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Commercial coffee machines (Professional coffee machines)

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Commercial Coffee Machines

Commercial appliances differ from all other coffee machines in that they enable their owners to serve a large number of coffee lovers. These professional brewing tools are perfect for offices, seminar rooms, catering businesses and all places serving takeaway coffee, be it cafés, restaurants or hotels. 

Based on their principle of operation, commercial coffee machines are further divided into two distinct categories: these are professional semi-automatic coffee machines and professional bean-to-cup coffee machines. The first ones require the skills and continuous efforts of a professional barista, while the second ones can do just as well without the barista’s help.  

Professional Semi-Automatic Coffee Machines

Professional semi-automatic coffee machines are designed to be manned by trained baristas. More often than not, appliances like that are encountered in cafés and restaurants that consider high-quality coffee to be an integral part of their menu, or even one of its cornerstones. If that’s the case for your business, serving flawless coffee that satisfies every requirement put in place by the professionals working in this field is an absolute must for you—and to achieve that, you’ll definitely need a professional semi-automatic coffee machine. 

How to Choose a Professional Semi-Automatic Coffee Machine? 

When it comes to choosing the right professional semi-automatic appliance for you, one of the first criteria to consider is its productivity. Ask yourself how many servings you’re likely to serve during the busiest time of the day, then choose the boiler size, as well as the number of groups and steam wands, based on your answer.

Once you do that, the next step is to identify the approximate sum you’re able or willing to spend on a new coffee machine. This will point you towards the direction of either mid-range or premium models. Premium commercial appliances are characterised by particularly convenient operation (display and programming options), a wide range of functions allowing you to control every step of the brewing process (i.e., pre-infusion, brewing pressure, water temperature and so on), as well as automated maintenance programs. They’re usually distinguished by luxurious design solutions too, of course, which turns machines of this kind into eye-catching interior accents or even key points of attraction.

Coffee Friend’s assortment includes both affordable professional semi-automatic options (Lelit)and particularly lavish commercial machines (Rancilio).

Professional Bean-to-Cup Coffee Machines

Professional bean-to-cup coffee machines are designed for venues looking to serve lots of delicious coffee quickly and conveniently—which means drinks served at the touch of a button. What distinguishes these appliances from domestic bean-to-cup coffee machines is their productivity and container size. Most commercial bean-to-cup machines can be plumbed in and are equipped with drainage systems for used grounds and water. Appliances of this kind can often be seen in offices, hotels, gas stations, fast food restaurants, self-service areas and coffee kiosks. 

How to Choose a Professional Bean-to-Cup Coffee Machine? 

So, what should you pay attention to when deciding on the right professional bean-to-cup coffee machine for your business? We’ve listed the main criteria below.

Productivity. Just like in the case of professional semi-automatic coffee machines, the first question to ask yourself is how many cups of coffee you expect to brew daily. Pick a coffee machine based on its productivity: you’ll find the recommended number of daily servings indicated in the machine’s description or amongst its technical specifications. The time it takes for the appliance to brew one or two servings of black or milk-based coffee is often specified too. 

Black coffee drinks and/or milk-based beverages? It’s just as important for you to decide whether you require black coffee drinks only (perhaps your office is occupied exclusively by sworn fans of espresso?) or whether you’re going to serve milk-based beverages to your employees or clients too. Some commercial models, like Saeco “Royal Black” and Saeco “Aulika Evo Black” aren’t capable of frothing milk and are instead designed specifically for lovers of black coffees. However, if milk-based beverages are just as important to you, you should definitely choose a commercial machine with a milk system.

Option of plumbing the machine in. Next, consider whether you’re going to use removable containers that need to be filled up from time to time or whether you’d prefer plumbing your machine in and using a drainage system for used coffee grounds and water. Some commercial models come in two different versions—one of them capable of being plumbed in and the other relying exclusively on removable containers—so you should make your mind up before making your purchase.

Coffee grinders and bean containers. Coffee machines of this kind can be equipped with one or several grinders, as well as a single bean container or a couple of them. Your choice will depend on how important it is for you to brew drinks using different coffee varieties, hence being able to adapt to different tastes. 

Other hot beverages. Is the appliance you’re keen on purchasing equipped with additional containers for other hot beverages? For example, some commercial coffee machines are also capable of brewing hot chocolate thanks to special containers for chocolate powder. 

Cold drinks. Cold coffee drinks have been growing in popularity lately, so you might be interested in a commercial bean-to-cup machine that can serve you with some cold milk foam for your cold milk-based coffee beverages. 

Additional accessories. For those of you who want to brew drinks with even more ease and convenience, there’s a variety of professional accessories available. Milk coolers and cup warmers are particularly useful. The first of these are indispensable to those who end up choosing a machine with a milk system, while the second ones are guaranteed to come in handy as well: coffee’s known for turning cold extremely quickly and it definitely tastes best when served pleasantly warm.

Ad display options. Some commercial appliances let you display your own ads on the screen. This is an excellent feature for those who want to conveniently advertise their services or products to their partners or clients. 

Coffee Friend’s assortment boasts professional bean-to-cup coffee machines available at a variety of prices (Saeco). If you’re interested in more details or would like to get a personal offer for your business, feel free to reach out to Coffee Friend’s consultants: they’ll be happy to answer all of your questions and make sure that both you and your clients always have delicious, high-quality coffee available.