Right now you’re probably wondering 1 of 2 things: either “Why are you doing a Product Spotlight on the Gaggia Titanium after it’s already been out for a while,” or “Gaggia Titanium SS? Is that different than the original?” Let’s just say question 2 pretty much answers question 1 – we’ve got the machine that put “super” into super automatic.
So just what makes the Gaggia Titanium SS so special? A whole lot more than can be squeezed into one sentence. But the cornerstone of all the excitement surrounding this espresso machine can be summed up in one phrase: stainless steel. Not only does the Titanium SS feature the same 2 boiler system, stainless steel Turbo Frother, and stainless steel front panel that you can find on the original, it also has – drum roll please – stainless steel housing. Yes, you read it correctly; the Gaggia Titanium SS is housed in gorgeous stainless steel that made it our staff’s pick for the hands-down most stunning all-metal super auto available.
Let’s recap here – this espresso machine is unmatched in its style and jam-packed with features. Can you say, “no brainer?”
The Whiz – Bang – Pow!
After its shiny stainless steel, the first thing people tend to notice about the Gaggia Titanium SS is the electric blue LED display that acts as an all-inclusive message center. From here you’ll be guided through the brewing process and even alerted when you need to perform daily maintenance functions like refilling the reservoir and bean hopper, or more infrequently, when the machine needs to be descaled. Directly below the display lie the keys to your daily caffeine fix – a set of 7 buttons that include your brewing controls, bypass doser activation, hot water dispensing, descaling activation, and one-touch menu access. This kind of right-at-your-fingertips control makes this espresso coffee maker extremely user friendly.
This allows you a fair amount of customization with your drinks, but this super automatic also affords you the ability the designate the amount of coffee grounds that are used in each brewing cycle between 6 and 9 grams, and also features 18 grind settings. This level of adjustment allows you to make everything from the perfect espresso shot, using a finer grind and around 2oz of water, to a delectable café crema, which is made with 6 to 8oz of water pulled through a coarser set of grounds.
The 3 brewing buttons in this set are fully programmable to dispense any amount of liquid you choose – just press and hold the button all the way through the SS’s grinding, tamping, and brewing process until the amount of coffee you want to program that button to produce has been dispensed. Even if you decide to brew using preground coffee in the bypass doser instead of the beans in the hopper, every time you press that programmed button, that same liquid volume will end up in your cup – no abnormally large brain or super powers needed.
Both the grind setting adjustment and ground coffee dosing selection knobs are located inside the v-shaped 8.5oz bean hopper that sits behind the Titanium’s cup warmer. Not only does this cup warmer have its own dedicated heating element, it can be completely shut off through the menu options if you’d rather not leave it hot all day. Also to the rear of the cup warmer – and the bean hopper as well – is the SS’s 60oz removable reservoir, which is large enough to make it possible to brew up to 30 drinks without refilling or batting an eyelash.
The Men of Steel
The stainless steel-lined brewing boiler inside the Titanium SS provides excellent temperature stability for seamless brewing. And the fact that there is a second boiler devoted to steaming and frothing means this espresso machine can switch from brewing to steaming quicker than your local super hero can save a bus full of schoolchildren from peril. Actually, the only thing you need to do to get steam from this machine is open the steam knob that’s mounted on the right side of the machine – no button pushing, no waiting – just instant steam. And frothing your milk is just as easy as producing steam with your choice of using this Gaggia espresso machine’s stainless steel Turbo Frother or its auto frothing attachment. If you prefer americanos to the standard cappuccino or latte, just press the hot water button on the control panel, open the steam knob, and BAM*#@$! Hot water is dispensed directly into your cup.
An International Machine of Mystery
As we briefly touched on above, the Titanium SS’s control panel features a dedicated menu access button, so there’s no futzing around with pushing 2 buttons at the same time or anything like that. Once you’re in the menu, just use the small and medium cup buttons (which double as up and down navigation arrows respectively) to choose between which options you’d like to view or reprogram. This menu allows you to view the number of cups that the machine has brewed, turn the cup warmer on and off, program the brewing temperature to 1 of 5 settings, turn pre-infusion and pre-grinding on or off, set the auto-on and auto-off times, and if you’re feeling particularly multilingual, you can even choose to change the display language from English to Spanish, Italian, Dutch, Japanese, German, Portuguese, or French. C’est bon, non?
Eliminating Arch Enemies
Regularly cleaning and maintaining your super auto is a surefire way to keep away every espresso machine’s worst nemeses: grime and limescale. You will need to remove and rinse the Titanium’s brew group, clean the Turbo Frother and auto frother, and empty the drip tray on a regular basis and of your own accord. However, most other maintenance issues – like when the dump box needs to be emptied or when the machine needs to be descaled –are brought to your attention through the use of messages on the LED display. And descaling is made super-simple through the use of the descaling button that sits right on the control panel and the step-by-step descaling instructions that appear on the display screen.
Our Work Here is Done
After taking a look at all the goodies the Gaggia Titanium SS has to offer, it’s pretty obvious that this is one top-of-the-line machine. But wrap it all in a stainless steel housing and you have a combination of strength, speed, and style that we haven’t seen since – well, unfortunately I have trademark issues to worry about, but you get the idea.
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