Customer Reviews: Breville RM-BES860XL Remanufactured Barista Express Programmable Espresso Machine with Grinder
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on January 13, 2013
Hi, I got A coffee Shop, and I have a Rancilio Epoca, Automatic Double Group($7,000), and I make about 200-300 cups daily, and i taste every morning the coffee and set the grinding for best coffee flavor daily, and belive or not this little Barista Express machine took around 1 hour to set up the grind, shot programming, to make closely equal the same flavor i offer with the Rancilio and the machine only cost on amazon wholesale ($368) believe or not awesome, just is a liittle slower than rancilio (It's commercial) but for a house Kitchen Breville 860 Xl is more than just a espresso Machine.
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on October 8, 2012
decided to roll the dice with this unit...I must stress that this review deals ONLY with the condition of the unit I received and the accessories that came with it. I have NOT fired it up yet. For all practical purposes this machine and all accessories look brand spanking new with NO signs of wear anywhere, no scratches and no dents.(see my pictures) None of the accessories looked like they were repackaged and ALL were included, nothing missing....they were sealed in plastic and new in the box, nor was the machine dirty or unclean. I would swear it was brand new in the box, it looks beautiful. How will it work? who knows but how long does anything just don't know. I have 3 months to work it out and I also got a 2 year Canopy policy that specifically covers this machine. It's early but I think I might have hit a home run with this one though only time will tell. I sure hope it works as good as it looks...
> Made my first coffee this I need to go back to espresso school but the machine worked great, the operator just doesn't know what he's doing yet.
> 10/10 machine has been operating flawlessly so far. They weren't kidding about "dialing in" your coffee (single wall filter), it is not easy for me.
>Went back to dbl. wall mid setting...perfect espresso.
>Update > 12/4/12 No problems at all with the machine and it continues to perform as when I first used it. I want to reiterate that , as a coffee lover, I am thrilled that I bought this machine. It's not just the unit but rather the coffee it makes....for years I thought I was drinking espresso's...ha, the joke was on me. There is one downside however, and that is neighbors. They'll always "drop by" in the morning for a cup, but I really can't blame them! (try this....put your sweetener [I use unrefined raw sugar] into your frothing pitcher with your milk or cream before you froth it.)
> Update 2/28/13 > 860 still going strong. Dialed in my beans with the single wall filter and wouldn't trade it for anything, the coffee is superb.
> Update 6/26/13 > unit is still performing perfectly although not without basic routine maintenance such as cleaning the grinder and flushing the portafilter regularly and not necessarily waiting until the cleaning light comes on. I use Urnex Cafiza Espresso Machine Cleaning Tablets, 100 Tablets and they seem to work well.
> Update 11/27/13 > after a period of non use of a few weeks this summer I attempted to make a shot and my grinder was not would just "thump, thump thump" as it attempted to grind and nothing would come out. Gave it a quick clean job with no results so, bummed out, went to using a small portable one I've had for years. Then the other day I checked it out again as the conical grinder makes all the difference in your shot. I noticed the grinder was packed pretty good underneath the head so I picked away with jeweler like tools....then I would flip the unit over and empty what I had loosened up.(didn't want to attempt a dis-assembly) This took a while as the grounds were hard and packed. I bet I dumped it 6-8 times. Lots of stuff in there but I eventually got it all out. Tried it out and it worked perfectly again. I think humidity may have played a part in the clogging. Other than that this refurbished machine is still going strong.
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on October 22, 2012
This machine is top notch in my opinion. I purchased the refurbished machine and the one thing I noticed was a small blemish on the top face in the metal. No big deal to me for the price savings! The machine has worked perfectly and I am more than pleased with the results. Has turned my husband into a coffee making guy, which is amazing! Would recommend this machine to anyone interested in replacing their Starbuck's addiction with an at home cheaper option. This is easy to learn and the results are nothing short of AMAZING!
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on February 14, 2013
Just received this remanufactured BES860XL today from Amazon, opened up the box and found some broken black plastic pieces falling when lifted up the espresso machine. Later another problem was found, the grind quantity turning knob at the front was pushed inward, and the knob could not be turned. I thought at least I should be able to test the espresso function. Plugged in the power cord and pressed the power button, no light and nothing happened. I realized I got a DOA unit. Amazon couldn't replace another unit due to out of stock. I called Breville and the customer support lady was willing to help for a replacement. I am not sure whether I should get a replacement or get refund. Obviously, there is problem over the quality control procedure. I worry another defective unit may send to me.
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on September 15, 2013
I bought this machine almost a year ago and I purposely waited this long to review it so I could give a really accurate assessment.

I bought this because I was spending was too much money on drive thru coffee. I was a full time barista and drinking well, a ton of coffee a day. I was hesitant to drop this much money at once on something I didn't technically need, but with my coffee habit it paid for itself in about four months. Plus I'd always "dreamed" of owning something like this, so I did a ton of research on machines. Which was the best coffee for the best value, get the most options, it was REALLY important that the drinks were good otherwise I'd keep up my drive thru habit. I eventually decided on this machine because of how it looks, plus it gave me all the options I needed to make the drinks I wanted, and it had really outstanding reviews.

I had absolutely no problem with it for about six months. I kept it clean and did all the upkeep as it was prescribed (cleaning tablets, new filter, vinegar cleaning mix). I had an issue with the grinder not grinding the beans but with some solid time my husband was able to clean it out and get it fixed. I'm not sure why this happened, but it's ok, we fixed it ourselves just by taking it apart and it hasn't happened since. At times it seems to leak as well, but I think that is a user error (ie not replacing the tray correctly).

We use the machine once or twice a day every single day. It grinds well, heats does everything. You'd never guess it was refurbished. It looks pretty on my counter....It gives you the option of an advanced brewing and grinding system (if you're knowledgeable or picky) but also has the standard option as well. The manual is really clear with everything and anyone can learn to become a barista on this thing in no time. I literally have no complaints. It's performed really well for us for a year and I anticipate many more years of coffee to come!
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on January 15, 2013
I love my coffee (and my wife loves that she has a personal barista at home, so she can place her "orders" with having to leave the house... I digress).

I bought this machine after reading a multitude of others' reviews on the refurbished machine and felt comfortable. I have had this machine for over a month and have already surpassed 100 made drinks. The heating coils prep quickly and the pump feels strong (I really pack/temp my grounds, so water has to fight through, while picking up as much flavor as possible in the process).

The programmable draw buttons are great. Once set, you can work on other tasks (i.e. milk prep) while the pump is making your espresso.

My only con on this machine is the grinder distribution. The distribution of the grounds is on the very backside of the basket/filter. So as to create a mountain on the back edge of the filter, which is inevitably to high to remove from its holder position without losing a fair amount of grounds. Call me frugal, but I like to actually use all of my bought coffee, not lose a quarter of it to be thrown out in the water catch. I almost exclusively use the double shot, so I know do a single shot grind twice, so I can pack the first down to make room for the second. A little extra work, but it save me some oh-so-precious grinds.
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on October 24, 2012
Have only had the machine a little while but we are very impressed with our remanufactured Breville. Everything came in shrink wrapped packaging and all parts were shiny new. Brews an amazing shot of espresso. The grinder is very quiet and produces finely ground beans very quickly. I like that the water tank is large and comes with a filter. The drip tray is easy to remove and clean. There is a neat storage container housed under the machine. Still and working on my frothing art but the machine takes less than a minute to heat up for proper steam. I am not a coffee expert but I like a good latte or espresso shot and this machine is a huge upgrade from our $100 Krups machine. We don't need top of the line but this sure feels like it, especially for the remanufactured price.
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on January 15, 2013
Full disclosure the first unit was broken. Subsequent unit flawless. Use it everyday. So fast. You can have espresso in under a minute. Once you get the desired amount grounds through a few cups of trial and error you are good to go. Just give it a tamp, wipe the edges off and you are good to go. Really consistent coffee. Highly recommended at the refurb price.
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on December 17, 2012
I've only been using this unit a few days but I have to say I think it was money well spent. Back in my working days I spent a lot of time in Europe on business, especially Spain. Every morning while there I would walk to a local coffee shop for their delicious cafe con leche. I knew I could never create one of these great drinks without a machine like this, or something much more expensive. Well, using the beginner settings I have been able to make cappucinno/cafe con leche that taste just like what I enjoyed in Spain! I intend to push myself to be more creative with this unit and try the manual settings to see if it can create even better espresso shots but even if it doesn't get any better I am satisfied with this machine. It does an amazing job of frothing milk.
If I had one complaint it would be that the temperature of the espresso is not hot enough for me - but, easy solution, just pop the cup in the microwave for 20 seconds and problem solved.
I weighed going with this re-manufactured unit vs. a new one. At the price difference I bought a three year service plan with plenty of money left over to buy lots of espresso beans. And the machine looks like new anyway (just a couple of small marks on the SS which you can barely see.
I recommend this unit unless you are used to the whiz-bang expensive units that probably do much more. At the price point this is a bargain.
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on December 21, 2013
My 860 worked for about one year and made great espresso, but then the pump failed. The good news is that Breville had great customer service. They replaced it with the newer 870 that replaced the discontinued 860.

The 870 fixes several flaws in the 860 and adds an "instant" hot water spigot. The most important fix is the redesign of the bean hopper. The 870 does a great job of keeping any water spilled on top of the machine from running down into the grinder. The 860 funneled any spilled water right down the grinder. It is a nightmare trying to clean wet grinds out. Ask me how I know... Also the bean hopper has steeper sides so all the beans easily slide down into the grinder.

They also added the ability to adjust the water temp in the 870. I had always thought the 860 didn't get the water hot enough, so I was delighted to experiment with this adjustment. Ironically, I found that, with the medium roast beans I favor, I got the best flavor using the lower temp setting just like the 860 used.

In conclusion:
If you get a super smok'n deal on an 860, and you are REALLY careful to never spill water on top of it, then it will make great coffee and you should be happy with it. If the 870 is anywhere close in price, go with it.
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