What Kind of Espresso Machine Should I Buy for My Coffee Shop?

I did not know what type of espresso machine to buy for our first coffee shop. The former tenant left a Verismo 701, so we began operating with that machine. Within a year, we knew the local espresso machine repair guy well – this machine unfortunately needed frequent maintenance. After about a year, we hired an experienced barista to manage that location who encouraged us to consider a manual espresso machine rather than a super-automatic one.

We began by researching common brands and visiting local coffee shops that used machines such as La Marzocco and Synesso. During this process, a friend told me about the Retro Espresso Machine by Fracino. These espresso machines are unique because they pull the espresso shots with manual levers rather than a button system. It is user friendly, produces high quality espresso, and has a very eye-catching design. I also appreciated that I could perform its simple maintenance process! We purchased the Retro Fracino, and it worked so well that we purchased two more for our second location and became one of Fracino’s US distributors. (Visit shilohcoffeesupply.com to see our selection.)

Regardless of the espresso machine you choose, it is vital that you purchase a brand-new unit. Used or refurbished espresso machines often cost more time and money in the long run due to frequent, expensive repairs. The espresso machine is the heart and soul of your coffee shop. Since this one piece of equipment produces the majority of your coffee shop’s income, I highly recommend investing in a dependable espresso machine made from quality parts.

Espresso machines, including Fracino, come with single, double, or triple group heads. Some have steam wands on one or both sides. These different options affect how quickly baristas can make the drinks and how many staff members are needed. For example, we chose two Fracino machines with dual group heads for our second coffee shop location. The reason we purchased two machines is because this location has a drive-thru (typically about 40%-60% of your business). One machine produces drinks for the drive-thru, and the other produces drinks for in-house drinks and mobile orders. This provides more space for our baristas to work, and they can assign drinks to a specific machine to eliminate confusion. It also significantly speeds up the process. Our first location primarily serves in-house drinks at a lower volume, so one machine with dual groups heads is sufficient.

If you are in the market for an espresso machine for your coffee shop or restaurant, we encourage you to consider a Fracino Espresso Machine. Fracino was established in 1963 and its machines have a reputation for quality and reliability worldwide. In fact, over 70 countries use Fracino machines. They manufacture around 90% of their high-quality parts in Birmingham, England, and the machines are built to last 20+ years with proper maintenance. Fracino is also one of the only companies in the world to offer a propane-powered dual-fuel espresso machine designed for coffee carts, coffee trucks, food trucks, or other remote espresso service locations. This opens up a world of possibilities for coffee shops, restaurants, wedding vendors, and disaster relief efforts. Mobile coffee can be both convenient and delicious!

To learn more, you can visit our sister company, Shiloh Coffee Supply, to see these espresso machines available for purchase.


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