We have been craving good quality coffee in the comfort of our home and a machine that was essentially closer to zero waste. We used to have a Nespresso machine but the aluminium pods didn’t seem very sustainable and was taking up too much space in terms of storage and rubbish. After much research we decided on a Delonghi Dedica Espresso Coffee Machine. We wanted something that could re-create the cafe coffee quality without paying the high costs. Let’s dive into what we wanted and how well this machine performed.
What were our requirements?
- Under 200 pounds (Our budget was 200 pounds)
- No pods (We understand that Nespresso pods can be recycled in their store but that would essentially mean we would have to visit their store once a month and it would mean we would be spending even more money buying their pods)
- Ability to buy coffee bean grinds from specialty stores (Part of going zero waste we want to move towards less packaging and this was one way to enjoy coffee)
- Steaming wand (we wanted to be able to create the same level of milk frothing as they do at a cafe to create latte art and perfect the milk to our liking)
- Small real estate/Compact (we don’t have much space on the kitchen bench so a machine that takes up less real estate would be key)
- Easy to maintain and clean (This would be our first non-pod espresso machine and we wanted something easy and dummy-proof)
What did we use?
Delonghi Dedica Espresso Coffee Machine Review
We got our machine for £149 delivered Delonghi Dedica Espresso Coffee Machine. This was great because it was £50 under our £200.
There are other deals if you keep a look out on Argos, AO.com and Amazon.com.
Size and Dimension
- Weight: 4.22kg
- Dimension: 33cm x 14.9cm x 30.3 cm
- Holds 1 Litre of water in the back.
This is quite a compact machine taking up only 30cm by 15cm on the kitchen table top and rises around 30cm high. We were able to slot this machine neatly in the side nook quite easily.
Coffee Grinds vs Pods
Switching from pods to grinds was an interesting experience. It took us about 2 weeks to get used to scooping, filling and pressing the grind into the puck. Within one week in we started to question why we switch to grind because the espresso wouldn’t drip through the puck unless you have it absolutely clean. There were so many instances at the beginning that the machine wouldn’t push the water through the coffee and it really stumped us. However, we pressed on and found out the reasons for why the water didn’t push through.
- The seal was not spotlessly clean from any grinds – Solution: wipe the rims of the puck before clipping it into the machine
- Small specks of coffee grind would pass through the filter and clog the tiny hole that lets the espresso flow through – Solution: Rinse everything before use and make sure no grind is anywhere under the filter
- Too much coffee grind added to the puck – Solution: follow the scoop amount by levelling with the scoop and don’t over fill the puck.
After identifying and tackling these issues – we are so happy with the grinds. A nice crema flows through now.
Easy of Use and cleaning
Compared to a Nespresso it takes twice as long to clean because you need to empty the grinds into compost and clear out the steam wand. However, it is still relatively easy to use and after figuring out why the espresso wasn’t being pushed through everything was a lot easier. Make sure to “purge” the steam wand because milk from your foam can start to clog the steam wand pipe and the next time you go to froth the milk the air doesnt flow through as nicely. And nobody wants old bits of milk in their coffee! Nobody!
It was hard to get the micro-foam at first, however, with a little practise we were able to get a really nice foamed milk that allowed us to create rookie latte art. We used Oatly Barisata Milk because it’s the closest thing we’ve tasted to dairy milk. It is rich, creamy and has a nice subtly sweet taste when frothed, just like real milk. We also tried Bonsoy because we noticed cafes use this brand a lot, however, it didn’t turn out too well on our machine. Probably due to lack of skill and experience with the machine, we weren’t able to create any micro-foam with the Bonsoy.
Anyway, here are some of our attempts at creating the perfect flat white or latte.
Would I recommend the Delonghi Dedica Espresso Coffee Machine?
Yes – if you want to practise latte art, be able to choose where to get your coffee beans and have cafe quality coffee at home, this would be a good first espresso machine to start with.
- Produces a delicious espresso
- Value for money
- Allows you to practise your barista skills
- The scoop and presser is a black plastic and doesn’t feel premium, however, it does the job.
- When clipping in the puck the machine moves a little bit so you have to hold the machine when clipping it in
- Doesn’t come with a milk frother jug