Gaggia Achilles Espresso Machine
Gaggia is one of the most respected names in espresso today, and for the use of home espresso machines we can thank Achilles Gaggia, who patented the first electric pump motor - vital for consistently creating enough pressure to produce good espresso - in 1938. Prior to this invention, the operators of manual espresso machines used pistons to manually adjust the pressure - The Gaggia Achilles is named after the man. It is almost identical to the design used back in the 1930s, a lever-operated machine with a stainless steel body, chromed brass group head and filter and a 32-oz water reservoir. The machine performs best with freshly roasted and ground beans, but will also work with special espresso pods, though if you're going to get a Gaggia, it is worth knowing the intricacies of the coffee bean as well as the machine itself. Price: $1,499.95.