4 Best Manual Espresso Maker: Unleashing Your Inner Barista

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In the world of coffee brewing, manual espresso makers have gained significant popularity among enthusiasts. These devices allow users to take control of the brewing process, resulting in a truly personalized and high-quality espresso experience. In this blog post, we will explore the top contenders for the title of the best manual espresso maker: the Flair Signature Pro, NEO manual espresso maker, STARESSO Portable Coffee Maker, and The Flair 58. You can find the perfect manual espresso maker to elevate your coffee brewing game by understanding its features, benefits, and performance.

manual espresso maker with a red espresso cup

What Are Manual Espresso Makers?

A manual espresso maker is a coffee brewing device that relies on manual pressure and control to extract espresso from coffee grounds. It typically consists of a portafilter, a brewing chamber, a lever or pump mechanism, and a water reservoir. Unlike automatic espresso machines, manual espresso makers require active participation and manual effort from the user to create the perfect shot of espresso.

6 Factors to Consider When Choosing a Manual Espresso Maker

When selecting a manual espresso maker, several factors should be taken into consideration:

  1. Budget considerations: Determine your budget range and look for options that fit within it.
  2. Size and portability: Consider whether you need a compact, travel-friendly espresso maker or a larger, more robust machine.
  3. Durability and build quality: Look for devices constructed from high-quality materials that can withstand regular use.
  4. Ease of use and cleaning: Consider the simplicity of operation and the ease of cleaning and maintenance.
  5. Extraction quality and control: Evaluate the ability of the espresso maker to produce consistent and flavorful shots of espresso.
  6. Additional features and accessories: Consider extra parts or accessories that enhance the brewing experience, such as pressure gauges or temperature control.
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Best Manual Espresso Maker: Reviewed & Rated

Flair The NEO Espresso

Stars rating out of 5 Stars rating out of 5 background image
4.4 out of 5
Flair The NEO Espresso

The Flair The NEO Espresso is a compact and user-friendly manual espresso maker designed for coffee lovers who crave a convenient and hassle-free brewing experience. Featuring a sleek and modern design, this espresso machine offers an excellent entry point into the world of manual espresso brewing. With its simplicity and affordability, the Flair The NEO Espresso is perfect for beginners and espresso enthusiasts looking to enjoy delicious shots of espresso without the complexities of more advanced machines.

  • Intel Core i5 processor
  • 8GB RAM
  • 256GB SSD
Why we like it
  • User-friendly design
  • Compact and space-saving
  • Affordable
  • Consistent espresso quality
  • Easy to clean and maintain
Why we don't like it
  • Limited customization options
  • Single-shot capacity
  • Manual operation

Flair Espresso Maker PRO 2

Stars rating out of 5 Stars rating out of 5 background image
4.6 out of 5
Flair Espresso Maker PRO 2

The Flair Espresso Maker PRO 2 is a premium and professional-grade manual espresso machine designed for coffee aficionados who crave the utmost precision and control over their espresso brewing process. Building upon the success of its predecessors, the PRO 2 model incorporates several upgrades and enhancements to deliver an exceptional espresso experience. With its durable construction, sleek design, and advanced features, the Flair Espresso Maker PRO 2 is a perfect choice for those seeking barista-level quality in their home espresso setup.

  • Add 70ml of boiled water and a dose of up to 24 grams to yield up to a 56 ml shot with beautiful crema
  • Custom pressure gauge with an Espresso Zone between 6-9 BAR
  • Removable stainless steel spout
  • Enhanced all-stainless steel bottomless portafilter
Why we like it
  • Professional-grade build quality
  • Precise pressure control
  • Enhanced stability and consistency
  • Sleek and elegant design
  • Customizability and experimentation
Why we don't like it
  • Manual operation
  • Learning curve
  • Higher price point

Flair Espresso Maker - Classic with Pressure Kit

Stars rating out of 5 Stars rating out of 5 background image
4.5 out of 5
Flair Espresso Maker - Classic with Pressure Kit

The Flair Espresso Maker is a manual espresso machine designed to deliver exceptional coffee brewing experience right in the comfort of your own home. Crafted with precision and attention to detail, this sleek and compact espresso maker allows you to create barista-quality espresso shots using the traditional lever-pull method. With its durable construction and elegant design, the Flair Espresso Maker is a perfect choice for coffee enthusiasts who appreciate the art of espresso making.

  • Burr grinder essential
  • Brewing head detachable
  • Brewing range 6-9 BAR
  • Carrying case included
  • 5-year warranty
Why we like it
  • Custom pressure gauge
  • Built to last
  • Exceptional espresso quality
  • Manual lever-pull system
  • Portable and compact
  • Easy setup and cleaning
Why we don't like it
  • Learning curve
  • Manual operation
  • Limited capacity

STARESSO Portable Coffee Maker

Stars rating out of 5 Stars rating out of 5 background image
4.4 out of 5
STARESSO Portable Coffee Maker

The STARESSO Portable Coffee Maker is a compact and versatile coffee brewing device designed for those who want to enjoy their favorite coffee beverages on the go. With its innovative and portable design, this coffee maker allows you to brew espresso, cold brew, or even froth milk, all without the need for electricity or complicated setups. The STARESSO Portable Coffee Maker is perfect for travelers, outdoor enthusiasts, or anyone who appreciates a convenient and flavorful cup of coffee anytime, anywhere.

  • 18~22% Gold Extraction Rate
  • 15-20bar Internal Extraction Pressure
  • Silicone Material with Same Safety Level as Baby Bottles
  • Aerospace-grade Nano-ceramic Coating
Why we like it
  • All-in-one brewing
  • Portable and compact
  • Easy to use and clean
  • No electricity required
  • Consistent flavor extraction
Why we don't like it
  • Limited brewing capacity
  • Learning curve
  • Smaller coffee grounds compartment

Best Manual Espresso Maker: Inspiration Gallery

Why Purchase a Manual Espresso Maker Instead?

  • Control: Manual espresso makers give you full control over the brewing process, allowing you to fine-tune your shots to perfection.
  • Portability: Manual espresso makers are compact and portable, making them ideal for travel or use in small spaces.
  • Cost-effective: Manual espresso makers are often more affordable than their automatic counterparts, saving you money in the long run.
  • Durability: With fewer electronic components, manual espresso makers are typically more durable and have a longer lifespan.
  • Ritual and enjoyment: Brewing espresso manually can be a rewarding and enjoyable experience, allowing you to connect with the coffee-making process.

Experience the art and satisfaction of handcrafted espresso with a manual espresso maker.

Man pressing down on his manual espresso maker and espresso being squeezed out of it

Tips for Using a Manual Espresso Maker

To make the most of your manual espresso maker, consider the following tips:

  • Familiarize yourself with the user manual and follow the recommended brewing techniques.
  • Experiment with different coffee bean varieties, grind sizes, and extraction times to discover your preferred flavor profiles.
  • Practice tamping techniques to ensure even and consistent extraction.
  • Pay attention to water temperature and preheating to optimize flavor extraction.
  • Clean and maintain your manual espresso maker regularly to prolong its lifespan and ensure the best-tasting espresso.
espresso cup seen from a top down view

Maintenance and Care of a Manual Espresso Maker

To keep your manual espresso maker in optimal condition, follow these maintenance and care guidelines:

  • Regularly clean and descale the brewing components according to the manufacturer's instructions.
  • Store the espresso maker in a clean and dry environment when not in use.
  • Inspect and replace any worn-out or damaged parts as needed.
  • Perform routine maintenance routines, such as lubricating moving parts and checking for leaks.


Choosing the best manual espresso maker requires careful consideration of various factors, including budget, size, durability, extraction quality, and additional features. The Flair Signature Pro, NEO manual espresso maker, STARESSO Portable Coffee Maker, and The Flair 58 are all top contenders in the manual espresso brewing arena. Each offers unique features and advantages, allowing you to find the perfect match for your brewing preferences.

Embrace the world of manual espresso making and unlock your inner barista. Explore, experiment, and enjoy the art of crafting your perfect cup of espresso with these exceptional manual espresso makers.

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