The Rancilio HSD-SILVIA Silvia Espresso Machine has coffee lovers split up in the middle. Some appreciate its looks and weight. While others feel it doesn’t really make any statements with its design that’s neither modern nor retro. It seems to sit comfortably between commercial and home machine. And that’s not always a good thing.
However, in a lot of other things, consumers seem to be in agreement. And at the top of the list is grinding.
It’s been said over and over by many coffee aficionados. You will get the best results only if you have a quality burr grinder. Nothing beats the taste and flavor of freshly ground coffee beans, certainly not those that have been roasted and grinded months before.
Having said that, it must also be mentioned that for you to get the most out of the Rancilio HSD-SILVIA Silvia Espresso Machine, you’d have to get a burr grinder. It’s a machine that’s very picky with its grinds. Because of this, it’s no surprise that many have experienced dumping grinds and readjusting because the room temperature and humidity is suddenly different. This makes making consistently good shots a challenge.
When the conditions are good though, the Silvia works like a dream. Tamping properly will even give you microfoam.
Over-all, the Silvia operates rather quietly, has a solid metal steam wand and features aplenty. There’s a brass boiler and brew group, large tank, and the steam pressure is ample. The user manual is a little hard to fathom, but get on the internet and you’d be sure to find loads of videos to help you out. Rancilio is also a reliable brand and has been known as such for decades. And the Silvia has really good build quality as a whole.
But if you’re new to coffee-making, the learning curve may just be too daunting. You may get too frustrated with all the additional skills you need to learn just so you won’t have to toss out another disgusting shot to the trash.
Even if you’re a coffee maker extraordinaire however, the Silvia still has some drawbacks. It takes a while to heat up and because it’s a single boiler, you’ll have to wait between brewing and steaming. It’s definitely not the machine to use if you are aiming to produce a large quantity of coffee quickly.
It also needs to be said while espresso making is not a cheap hobby, there are a lot of other machines in the market that can get a novice started without having to spend as much as you would on a Rancilio Silvia. It will set you back at almost $700. And you’d need to purchase separate accessories and other equipment just to get a good cup of java. (Burr grinders cost around $300 on average, for one.)
If you do still decide to go for it though, you’d be happy to know that Rancilio is a popular brand so there’s a lot of support to be found and had. And all the parts and accessories you need are easily located and purchased.
Is the Rancilio HSD-SILVIA Silvia Espresso Machine ultimately a bad buy? Well, not really. But for it to be worth your money, you’d have to invest a lot of time and effort to really make it work.
- powerful steaming
- accessories are easy to locate and purchase
- no pressure gauge and PID
- finicky machine
- Dimensions: 9.2 x 11.4 x 13.3 inches
- Weight: 30.8 pounds
- Input Power
- Pump pressure
- ergonomic portafilter
- commercial grade group head
- articulating steam wand
- professional steaming knob
- classic linear design
- optional pod and capsule adaptor kit
Colors: Stainless steel
Consumer Rating: 4.3 out of 5 stars at Amazon
Price: $685 at Amazon at time of review
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Rancilio Silvia Espresso Machine Review,