What I Like About This Machine:
Compact Design – The machine is small in stature but great for making espresso. It is only 12 inches tall and 8 inches wide. It should fit in just about any size kitchen. The Saeco Aroma is almost small enough to travel around with or bring to a small intimate dinner gathering.
Pressurized Portafilter - This is the key to what makes this machine so easy to use. It allows you to use just about any grind and still produce a pretty good espresso. The portafilter allows you to build up the pressure to 9 bars before the coffee is allowed to flow. This means that the portafilter is creating all the pressure for you to extract an espresso. In my opinion, the Aroma has been built to be kind to newbie’s. Almost anyone should be able to brew a satisfying espresso with this machine.
Easy controls – The controls are very simple. You have an easy to find on/off switch. You also have two buttons – one for activating the steam, another button to brew with and a steam knob on top of the machine to start and stop the steaming.
Stainless Steel Boiler – This is one of the few machines in this price range that has a stainless steel boiler. This is important to many people and it also helps keep your boiler form building up mineral deposits. This type of boiler can help improve the longevity of your machine.
What I Would Change:
Portafilters- It would be nice if you could also use a non pressurized portafilter. Many semi-automatic machines offer the ability to use a pressurized or non pressurized. The Aroma only offers the pressurized version.
Pannarello Wand – You may want to get a Gaggia Latte Art Pannarello wand. This will fit on the Saeco and give you much more control over the steaming of your milk. You will be able to create perfect latte milk with some practice. The Panarello wand that comes with it will make great cappuccino foam but may struggle with Latte milk.
Recommended User: This machine is great for people just getting in to their first espresso machine or for people that have limited counter space. It can work in a small apartment to a vacation home quite well. I could even see it on a RV or a boat. The nice thing is with a little care and good soft water the Aroma should be a good friend for a long time.