I have always been fascinated by machines and have come to appreciate painstaking workmanship and carefully engineered and tested designs. Finding the very best quality design and craftsmanship at a reasonable cost in an espresso machine can be a daunting task. In some cases the beauty and...
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OverviewBack to Top
Espresso perfection requires precision temperature and pressure control, consistently, every time. Recognizing this need, Breville has designed the BES900XL Dual Boiler espresso machine around the concept of meeting the “Gold Standard” for making great espresso. They define four key elements that dual boilers and state-of-the-art electronic controls should maintain control over:
- limiting maximum extraction pressure
- low pressure pre-infusion
- consistent extraction temperature
- simultaneous extraction and steam
With one boiler just for espresso and dual electronic PID controls, (proportional–integral–derivative), the BES900XL delivers temperature controlled pre-heated water to the boiler, producing precise water temperature for an ideal extraction every time!
That said, there's still much more to this machine for the coffee geek. Programmable pre-infusion duration and pre-infusion power with manual override; a temperature display in either °F or °C; and preset/manual-override/programmable shot volume. An optional Auto Start setting preheats the machine at a programmed time; a top-fill 84 oz water tank ensures easy access; and the dedicated hot water outlet makes it faster to pre-heat cups or prepare an Americano. There is also a shot clock and pressure gauge to help you improve your barista skills over time. All you'll need are some freshly ground beans and a bit of practice to rival the best café.
FeaturesBack to Top
Features & Benefits
The Breville BES900XL Dual Boiler features not one, but two PID controllers. One is working on the brew boiler, and the second one is on the grouphead, not the steam boiler. This temperature control delivers precise water temperature for optimum espresso flavor and is user programmable to achieve optimal espresso flavor. The steam boiler is controlled via a thermister control. This focus on maintaining temperature extends to the commercial grade grouphead which has an embedded element for optimal thermal stability during extraction.
This machine also has two pumps. One is a 15 bar Italian pump with over-pressure valve (OPV) protection and delivers water at the optimum maximum extraction pressure of 9 bars. The other one is a less than 3 bar pump exclusively used to feed the steam boiler. That means no pressure problems at the grouphead should the auto-fill decide to trigger for the heat exchanger boiler while you are pulling a shot.
Finally, a user programmable low pressure pre-infusion feature gradually increases water pressure to gently expand grinds for an even extraction.
Components & Functionality
- Dual Stainless Steel Boilers - Dedicated boilers for simultaneous espresso extraction and milk steaming
- Dual Italian Pumps - Dedicated espresso and steam pumps for optimal pressure
- Regulated Extraction Pressure - Over-pressure valve limits extraction pressure
- Electronic PID Temperature Control - For precise water temperature
- Actively Heated Group Head - Maintains thermal stability throughout extraction
- Programmable Extraction Temperature - 190 degrees - 205 degrees for different roasts and origins. Displays in either Fahrenheit of Celsius
- Programmable Volumetric Control - Preset 1 and 2 cup volumes, manual over-ride or reprogrammable volumes
- Programmable Pre-Infusion - Alter the pre-infusion duration and power to fine tune flavor profiles
- Espresso Pressure Gauge - Monitors extraction pressure
- Espresso Shot Clock - A guide to extraction consistency
- Backlit LCD - Displays either extraction temperature, shot clock or clock
- Auto Start - Preheats the machine at a programmed time
- 360 degree Swivel Steam Wand - 3-hole tip for a silkier texture
- Hot Water Outlet - For making an Americano or preheating cups
- Drop Down Swivel Foot - Lifts the machine upwards for easy maneuverability around the countertop
- Built-in 24 hour clock allows you to program the machine to turn on every day at a specific time.
Steam Wand and Steam Control
The steam wand has full range of motion, left to right, front to back, and even swivels. The movement has enough drag to require a little effort but moves smoothly and provides satisfying feedback for precise positioning. A large soft rubberized grip keeps your hands safe from burning while operating. The bulbous end of the wand features a three-hole tip. Included with the BES900XL is a multi-tool for cleaning the wand or even unscrewing the tip so you can give it a complete cleaning.
Being a dual boiler machine, the BES900XL has on demand steam, and possibly the best steam control system in its class. It even rivals many commercial systems. Steam power is excellent for building perfect micro-foam time after time. A dedicated 32 oz, (950ml) steam boiler, delivers instant and continuous steam.
The Breville Dual Boiler has PID-controlled temperature for both the brewing boiler and the grouphead's active heating system. That means if you want to have 94C temperatures, you get that, or at least very close. More importantly, the temperatures hold very steady once they get to your programmed setting. The settings are in 1C or 2F jumps.
The 84 oz, (2.5L), reservoir can be entirely removed from the back of the machine through a lift and pull out handle system built right into its base. Removing it is simple to allow refilling or replacing the integrated filter.
One would think that removing the reservoir from the back of a heavy machine to refill it on a crowded counter would be very difficult. Breville did not overlook this situation and have designed two ingenious ways to handle refilling.
First, at the top of the machine, in front of the cup tray, there's a soft-touch, damped release lid that once pressed, slowly rises showing a place to pour water into. You can fill the entire reservoir from here. There is an LED lighting diode that enables you to see the water level as you fill through a sighting area under the grouphead. In the event you overfill the reservoir, Breville designed the shape of it in such a way that any overfill automatically gets poured into the machine's drip tray! Very nice!
The second way to fill the water reservoir is to remove the machine's drip tray, where you'll see a big knob underneath it. Turn it from 12 o'clock to 6 o'clock and the front of the machine rises up slightly setting the machine on three rubberized roller wheels. The front wheel (right under that knob you just turned) is on a 360 degree swivel. All of a sudden, you can roll the machine around on your counter, allowing easy access to the sides and back. Brilliant!
Hidden Accessories Tray
By pulling out the drip tray a small accessories storage tray is released revealing space to store spare filters, tools, cleaning tablets, and more.
Hot Water Tap
The hot water knob on the left of the Breville BES900XL Dual Boiler has a micro-switch that communicates with the main CPU about its status. Water comes from the brewing boiler, and because the brew boiler is given 80C water via the steam boiler's heat exchanger, there's little chance of excessive temperature drops even when dispensing 150ml or more of hot water.
A cavity inside the back left of the machine provides space for the flat cord to roll up. Very little effort is required to fit the entire cord inside.
The covered drip tray has a large surface, covering 33cm wide by 12.5cm deep. It is designed with a spill area that helps you pour out the contents; by tipping the tray towards the spill area you can control the out-flow of waste water. Another very nice feature is the clear visual indicator of waste water level - a wide “empty me” sign slowly starts to pop up as the tray fills.
The BES900XL Dual Boiler includes a 58mm steel based tamper that fits into a magnetic storage slot in the grouphead underhang.
- 58mm stainless steel portafilter (double spout)
- Single wall filter baskets (1 & 2 cup)
- Dual wall filter baskets (1 & 2 cup)
- Integrated tamper
- 25 fl.oz (750ml) stainless steel frothing jug
- Cleaning disc and tablets
- Cleaning tool and Allen key
- Water filter holder and water filters (1 year supply)
- Construction: Stainless Steel
- Voltage: 110 - 120 Volts
- Wattage: 1700 Watts
- Dimensions: 15 x 16.25 x 15 (inches H x W x D)
- Weight: 38 lb
SpecsBack to Top
|Dimension - Width (Inches)||15|
|Dimension - Height (Inches)||15|
|Dimension - Depth (Inches)||14.5|
|Drip Tray Material||Aluminum|
|Drip Tray Cover Material||Stainless Steel|
|Power Cord Length (Inches)||42|
|One Touch cappuccino|
|One Touch Cappuccino||No|
|Steam Wand Style||Commercial Style|
|Usable Length (Inches)||3|
|Height Off Counter (Inches)||4|
|Number Of Holes||3|
|Reservoir Or Plumbed||Reservoir|
|Reservoir Capacity (Oz)||84|
|Water Level Visible||Yes|
|Type Of Controls||Push Buttons|
|Cup Volume Control||Yes|
|Aroma / Flow Control||No|
|Pressure Gauges||Brew Only|
|Brew Temperature Display||Yes|
|Passive / Active||Active|
|Material||Chrome Plated Brass|
|Commercial Filter Baskets Included||Yes|
|Pressurized Filter Baskets Included||Yes|
|Ground, E.S.E. Pod And Capsule Compatible||Ground & ESE Pod|
|Bottomless Portafilter Available||No|
|Tamper Size (Millimeter)||58|
|Material||Chrome Plated Brass|
|Capsule / Pod Friendly||Yes|
|Back Flush Capable||Yes|
|Number Of Boilers||1|
|Brew And Steam Simultaneously||Yes|
|Brew Boiler Data|
|Brew Boiler Type||Small Volume|
|Brew Boiler Watts||1000|
|Brew boiler Volume (Oz)||.95 Liter|
|Brew Boiler Material||Stainless Steel|
|Brew Boiler Heater Location||Internal|
|Steam Boiler Data|
|Steam Boiler Type||Small Volume|
|Steam Boiler Watts||1000|
|Steam Boiler Volume (Oz)||.95 Liter|
|Steam Boiler Material||Stainless Steel|
|Steam Boiler Vacuum Relief valve||Yes|
|Steam Boiler Auto Fill||Yes|
|Maximum Pressure (Bar)||15|
|Self Priming Pump||Yes|
|Back Flush Cleaner Used||Cafiza|
|Country Of Manufacture||China|
Q & ABack to Top
Just received this machine along with the Baratza Virtuoso Preciso grinder from you guys today. I just love the look & feel of the Breville, and so far, so good with it's use, as well as with the Baratza. One question - do you have a recommendation for the grinder setting on the Baratza for...
Answer by Tom
Any recommendations and / or advice would still be appreciated, but I think I have it nailed down now. Using my Lavazza beans, I keep experimenting my fineness of grind and tamping pressure until I think I have reached an optimum. I worked the grind on the Baratza all the way down to 2-B, and...
Can you recommend a grinder to pair with this machine? I have a Cuisinart CBM-18 and I have read that this won't grind fine enough for this machine. Although it worked ok with the Saeco, but that's with a pressurized portafilter. Any recommendations?
Answer by DanMoraldo
I would highly suggest pairing your Breville 900XL with the Baratza Virtuoso Preciso. This grinder will certainly grid your coffee fine enough to ensure coffee-shop caliber espressos and is very reliable as well.
How long have you guys been selling this machine? In your experience, how reliable is this machine? I am looking for a new machine and this one really interests me with all the features. I have been using a Saeco Aroma (Starbucks Equivalent) for almost 8 years now and think I am ready to graduate...
Answer by mjackson
Ty, I agree it has great features. We have been selling since it came out so over a couple of years. So far so good. I cant say for sure about long term reliability as it has not had a chance to prove itself over a longer period of time. We will see but many people have been happy with this...
Does WLL have a bottomless Portafilter that will fit and can I get a 3 or 4 shot filter? I like this unit, works very well. I hope it does hold up. I have been able to pull some great shots using the Breville smart grinder. Roast my own in a cafe gene and have the roasting profile dial in. I...
Answer by mjackson
Mike, Glad you like the machine and we do not carry the bottomless portafilter yet . Breville USA does and you can order it here - http://www.brevilleusa.com/dual-boiler-espresso.html. I am not sure if or when they will have a triple basket.
I was considering going with the Alex Duetto III, but concerns about having to move a 75lb machine from underneath my cabinet to be able to refill the water tank gave me pause. I started reading about the Breville Dual Boiler and am very intrigued. Looking to be able to pull a great shot of...
Answer by mjackson
I think it has an amazing price for the features it has. It has not been out a long time so we don't really have an idea on the long term durability yet. I would suggest getting a very good espresso grinder like the Baratza Vario. It certainly will give you all the tools you need to pull a...