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Our Coffee Machine Guide: Free-Standing or Built-In?

Smeg Coffee Machines

If you’re a certified coffee lover, you’ve probably already got a coffee maker. A magnificent machine that makes you a double espresso in the time it takes you to brush your teeth. However if you’re new to the world of liquid caffeine, there’s plenty of research to be done on what brand, what type and what model you need to make that perfect cup of Joe. Whether you’re ready to replace your old one, or are taking baby steps into the new world of coffee, choosing a coffee machine is made simple with this coffee machine guide.

An Introduction to Coffee Machines

People love coffee all over the world. Every culture and every individual has a special way they make their coffee every morning (or every night!). Brews are made using pressure, through steeping, drip (filtration) or boiling.

Your more traditional, smoother coffee is made through a filter. Gravity comes into effect as hot water is poured over coffee grounds, slowly dripping out into the pot below, being kept warm on a hot plate. A rich espresso is made through pressure, the process of intensely pumping water through lots of compacted fine coffee grounds. A French press uses steeping, like your regular cup of tea, where grounds are steeped in hot water and in a matter of minutes there’s a lovely cuppa waiting for you.

These methods have barely scraped the surface on the types of coffee machines that are out there in the universe. Here are just a few more methods of making coffee:

  • Pod or Capsule Machine
  • Moka Pot
  • Drip Coffee Machine
  • French Press (or a Cafetiere)
  • Aeropress
  • Espresso Machine
  • Percolator
  • Fully-Automatic or Semi-Automatic Machine
  • Ibrik

Now you have an overview of how coffee is made, you may have a vague idea of what method is ideal for you. But what machine is ideal for your kitchen?

Free-Standing vs Built-In…

You’re looking to make a permanent addition to your kitchen, so the choice of coffee machine needs to be exactly right for you and your decor…

Free-standing is exactly what it says on the tin. Also known as a standalone coffee machine, this kitchen appliance will fit in and work happily exactly where you need it. A free-standing machine is instantly presentable, sleek and maneuverable according to your needs. If you like to change things up on the regular, you will need a free-standing to fit in with your new choice of decor.

Built-In machines take a little more effort but they are worth their weight in gold once installed. An integrated machine will do the world of good if you’re a caffeine fiend, as it’s a permanent installation that allows for coffee to be at your fingertips in a flash. The built-in machine is space saving and fits seamlessly, reducing the amount of clutter that builds up on your counter. If you’re really wanting to take your coffee game to the next level, the built in machine is for you.

Still undecided? There are a number of differences that will improve your chances of finding the perfect coffee making machine. To start, your free-standing machine can come in a variety of types and sizes that are suitable for your kitchen. You have espresso, drip and fully automatic. Drip would be perfect if you’re a beginner; it’s as simple as coffee grounds, water and wait. Espresso needs extra work with loading the grounds, and it can only make you an espresso or cappuccino, however it will make you feel like a fully-fledged barista in no time! Fully automatic allows you to make every type of coffee under the sun. Lattes, cappuccinos, ristrettos, or just a plain flat white, you name it, it’ll make it.

Unlike the versatile freestanding, our built-in machines are solely fully automatic. However these modern machines have a variety of technological features that will enhance your coffee morning. With some models, you can connect your phone or tablet and make coffee from the comfort of your bed. Other models are self-cleaning and can keep the coffee warm for longer in the integrated warming shelf. And if you really want to push the boat out, get a plumbed-in model. Directly attached to your water mains, the plumbed in machine cuts out the inconvenience of constantly refilling the water tank. No more stopping mid coffee!

There really is no limit to what these modern machines can do, so make sure to do your research and check out the unique range we have here.

Your Coffee. Your Choice.

If you’re looking to make a long term investment, fix coffee into your life with the built-in coffee machine that will make you coffee for years to come. But if you’re interested in a taster of the coffee life, with the thought of your flexible counter space in mind, the free-standing machine is right up your street. Ultimately, it’s your coffee, your choice, but make sure to see our extensive range of coffee machines right here. You won’t be disappointed!

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