Flat White Coffee made by the Breville Duo Temp Pro

Breville Duo Temp Pro Review — An Espresso Machine For Coffee Shop Coffee at Home

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Ever since the release of the Breville Duo Temp Pro, it has gained wide popularity as being one of the best machines to make espresso.

But what if you’ve never used an espresso machine before like this before? How do you set it up? How do you make sure you get a delicious cup of coffee time after time?

Well, it can get pretty overwhelming to work with such a machine at first, and that’s exactly where I come in!

Today, we’ll be helping you figure out how to use the Breville Duo Temp Pro espresso machine with a simple yet comprehensive guide.

So if you just bought this machine or you’re thinking about getting one, this review is definitely for you!

Keep reading to learn how to use the Duo Temp Pro and make every cup of coffee a perfect shot.

Step 1 – Get to Know Your Breville Duo Temp Pro Espresso Machine

First things first, you need to get to know the machine. Understanding all the buttons, controls, and features can make all the difference in your experience since you’ll actually have an idea of what you’re pressing and why you’re doing it.

You’d be surprised by the number of people who blindly jump into action once their machines are out of the box, then complain about the process being too complicated!

So to save you the trouble, let me introduce you to the basics:

Type of Machine

The Breville Duo Temp Pro espresso machine is classified as a semi-automatic home espresso machine.

This means that the machine will automatically set the temperature of the steam and hot water, as well as set the pressure when brewing the espresso.

However, as it’s not fully automatic, you’ll have to control the timing and the volume of each espresso shot you pull out of the machine.

Main Operation

This Breville espresso machine is called “Duo Temp” for a reason; it actually works using two different temperatures during every cycle.

The temperature of the water is automatically set at approximately 93°C (200°F) when you’re pulling the espresso shot. Then when you’re frothing the milk, it increases to around 135°C (275°F) to produce the needed steam.

After steaming, automatic purge takes place where the temperature of the heating system drops back to the initial 93°C to ensure that your next shot of espresso is extracted at the correct temperature.

Breville Duo Temp Pro Review: Controls and Features

Now that you have an overall understanding of your machine’s operation, it’s time that you learn about its controls and unique features. This allows you to take full advantage of the machine’s true potential.

The interface of the Breville Duo Temp Pro is actually very simple! Right on the front side, you can find a control dial at the center that lets you switch to ‘espresso mode, steam mode, or off/pause mode.

The power button is pretty obvious on your left side when facing the machine, while the right side has a select button that lets you pick what comes out of the swivel wand; either steam or hot water.

Of course, steam is what you choose when you want to froth milk for a latte or a cappuccino, while hot water can come in handy when you’re making an americano or even a cup of tea!

As for the Breville Duo Temp Pro unique features, I’ll just be going over a couple of aspects that you’ll probably appreciate as much as me!

One of these neat features is the low-pressure pre-infusion technique adopted by the machine.

What this means is that the Duo Temp Pro doesn’t begin its extraction process by applying the maximum water pressure. Instead, it releases a bit of water at a low pressure to gently wet the coffee grind.

The result? A more even extraction that makes your espresso taste better and stronger.

Step 2 – How to Set Up the Breville Duo Temp Pro

Now it’s time to start setting up your Duo Temp Pro espresso machine!

You should kick things off by locating and getting rid of all the packaging materials, labels, and any similar promotional stuff.

Make room for the machine on a table or a counter, but remember that it has to be dry and flat. Once the machine is parked in, find the water tank and fill it with clean fresh water. Carefully insert the tank into its designated slot at the back of the machine.

  • Tip – remember to do a quick on the water level every single time before you turn on the machine. The Duo Temp Pro isn’t equipped with a water level indicator, so unless you make sure there’s enough water before every use, you’ll be risking burning parts of the machine!

Next, plug the machine into a standard wall outlet (110/120 volt) and press the power button to turn it on.

You should see the ring surrounding the power button light up and flash. This indicates that the water is heating up to reach the ideal temperature for extracting espresso shots. Once the flashing stops and the light becomes solid, it means the machine is ready to start extraction.

If this is your very first time using the Breville Duo Temp Pro, you’ll need to prime the machine as follows:

  • Soak the water filter in a cup of water for about 5 minutes then rinse it for 1 minute under cold running water.
  • Wash all the components of the water filter, insert it over the bottom mesh, and make sure it’s locked in place.
  • Set the dial for 2 months ahead and secure the drip tray in its position.
  • Turn the front control dial to ‘espresso mode’ and leave it for 30 seconds, then turn the control dial to ‘steam mode’ for and leave it for 20 seconds.

You should repeat this sequence for 4 or 5 times to get the pump, the purge system, the steam wand, and the group head ready for action.

Step 3 – Preheat Your Machine

The Breville Duo Temp Pro espresso machine will start at a default ‘steam mode’ on the control dial when you first turn it on.

However, one of the most important steps that are often overlooked once you turn the dial to ‘espresso mode’ is allowing the machine to heat up and purge some water out.

Do this by setting the control dial to espresso and keep it there for about 10 seconds (before inserting the portafilter).

But if you want to guarantee that you’re getting the best results, let the machine preheat for 5 to 10 minutes to make sure all the parts are hot enough.

  • Tip – if you plan on having coffee every morning, you can turn on the machine when you wake and leave it to preheat while you go about your morning routine (bathroom, getting dressed, starting breakfast, and such). This will give the machine a few minutes to heat up while saving your time.

Preheating is crucial to ensure that the system reaches the optimal extraction temperature, so you avoid compromising the flavor of your espresso shot.

  • Tip – always remember to preheat the cup (or cups) you’ll be using to make your coffee to ensure the heat of the espresso doesn’t escape to the walls of the cup. You can do this either rinsing the cup with hot water and then keeping it on the top warming tray.

Step 4 – Time to Add Your Coffee

The key to making great coffee isn’t just using the machine correctly, but it’s also what you put inside the espresso machine that can make all the difference!

You see, the flavor of your coffee depends on many factors that work together to give you a delicious brew. These factors include the type of used coffee beans, the degree of roast, how freshly roasted beans are, the size and dose of the coffee grind, as well as the tamping pressure.

Freshness and Storage

All coffee experts recommend using freshly roasted coffee beans, ideally within 14 to 20 days from the ‘roasted on’ date. So, you should always look for this date rather than the ‘use by’ or ‘best by’ date.

As for grinding the coffee beans, it’s preferred that you do it right before you start brewing because ground coffee is prone to losing its flavor and aroma pretty quickly.

In any case, you can use pre-ground coffee, but it shouldn’t be more than 1 week old or else the flavor would be practically gone.

Tip – When you store your coffee, whether it’s whole or ground beans, make sure you place in a dark, dry, and cool container. You can vacuum seal it if possible, but never put it in the refrigerator or freezer.

Size and Dose

You want to make sure that you’re using the right size of the coffee grind, in the sense that it’s suitable for the machine.

The grind size needs to be fine but not too fine. Why? Well, the grind size affects how slow or quick the water travels through the ground coffee in the filter, and consequently, the taste of your espresso.

If the grind is too coarse, the water will flow through the ground coffee too fast. This means the contact time won’t be enough and the resulting espresso will lack flavor, color, and aroma because it’s under-extracted.

On the other hand, if the grind size is too fine, the water will have a hard time flowing through the ground coffee or it may not flow at all even under pressure. This means the contact time will be way too long and the resulting espresso will be too dark and bitter because it’s over-extracted.

  • Tip – if the ground coffee looks like a powder and feels like flour when you rub it between your fingers, then it’s probably too fine.

As for the dose of the coffee grind, there are 2 ways you can determine how much coffee to put in the portafilter.

You can “wing it” if you’re used to operating espresso machine and you have a good estimation of how much ground coffee you need for your drink.

Or you can do it the accurate way to ensure you have the right amount of ground for every cup of coffee. Here, you want to add about 8 to 10 grams of ground for a single shot of espresso, or about 15 to 18 grams if you want a double espresso shot.

  • Tip – to make the measurement process easier, you can simply weigh the portafilter before and after adding the ground coffee. The difference between the two readings is how much ground you got.

Step 5 – Tamp the Coffee Grind

Once you’ve added the ground coffee into the portafilter basket, you should tamp it. Tamping is when you press down the ground to evenly distribute and compress the coffee in the basket. This makes for a higher-quality shot.

So take the included tamper and really press down on the ground. Don’t hesitate to put some weight into it (around 30-40 pounds of pressure is what you want)!

  • Tip – the top of the tamper metal cap should be level with the top of the basket. If you happen to have more ground than this, use the razor tool to trim off any excess coffee.

Step 6 – Time the Espresso Shot

As I’ve mentioned, the Duo Temp Pro is a semi-automatic machine, so you’ll have to decide when to turn it off.

Typically, a shot of espresso should take around 15 to 20 seconds. Since you can also see the amount of pour going in the cup, you can also time the process by volume.

Step 7 – Steam/Froth the Milk

You can stop at the previous step and call it a day, but if you’re in the mood for a latte or a cappuccino, you’ll want to froth milk.

Luckily, the Duo Temp Pro comes with a nice swivel steam wand to let you do exactly that!

You can use any type of milk you prefer, as long as it’s cold, from skimmed milk to soy or almond milk. These produce the most volume of froth, but you can use full-fat milk for a creamier and richer flavor.

Once you add the milk in the frothing jug, make sure the tip of the wand is just under the surface of the milk. If it’s too deep, you’ll hear screeching sounds, and if it’s too high, you’ll end up splashing yourself and making a mess.

As the milk volume increases, slowly lower the jug to avoid spillage. When you start to feel uncomfortable touching the jug, that’s when you know the milk is hot enough to be added to your espresso.

Breville Duo Temp Pro: Final Thoughts

There you have it, a step by step guide to help you use the Breville Duo Temp Pro espresso machine. It may take you a bit of practice at first, but I’m confident you’ll be practicing your latte art in no time!

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