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11 Best Commercial Espresso & Coffee Machines in 2024

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This guide overviews the best professional espresso & coffee machines for small and large businesses. Keep reading to learn more.

Using my extensive experience selecting espresso machines for businesses. I’ve compiled my top recommendations into this guide.

I chose the Rancilio Classe 7 S as the best machine because it has an energy-efficient design, add-ons, and uses a heat exchanger. This saves money on the upfront and long-term costs while improving productivity.

rancilio classe 7 s 2 stone grey side

Rancilio Classe 7 S: Best Overall

  • Price: $7,830
  • Type: Semi-automatic
  • Dimensions: 21.3 × 39.8 × 20.5 in
  • Water Tank Size: 2.9 gal = 371 espresso shots
  • Boiler Type: Single boiler w/ heat exchanger
  • Number of Group Heads: 1-2
  • Use Case: Coffee Shops
  • Warranty: 1 year

It’s not perfect for everyone, though. Thus, I have picked ten more alternatives that fit more situations.

Keep reading to learn more.

11 Best Espresso Machines for Small & Large Businesses

  1. Rancilio Classe 7 S: Top pick
  2. Bezzera OTTO: Runner-up
  3. BFC Experta: Cheapest
  4. Rancilio Classe 5 S/ST 1 Group: Best for small coffee shops
  5. Astoria Plus 4 You TS SAE3 3 Group: Best 3-group machine
  6. La Marzocco GS/3 1 Group: Best single-group pick
  7. Saeco Aulika Evo Top HSC: Includes grinder
  8. UNIC Stella Epic: Best Italian machine
  9. Gaggia Cardona Prestige: Best for offices
  10. La Pavoni Bar Lever 2 Groups: Best manual machines
  11. Sanremo Opera 2.0: Best expensive machine

Top Industrial Espresso Machines

Here’s what I’ll talk about when comparing these machines:

  • Specifications
  • Pros and cons
  • Best use case
  • Overview of design choices and features
  • Deeper explanation of pros and cons

After all these recommendations, I’ll provide a buying guide. It’ll explain why each of the factors and design choices I cover is important for your business. I recommend reading it.

Almost all machines are semi-automatic espresso machines. They’re ideal for most coffee shops, stands, and carts due to the control they grant the barista.

This type of machine isn’t ideal for offices, buffets, and restaurants. However, I included super-automatic machines to suit those needs.

Let’s move forward.

1. Rancilio Classe 7 S: Best Overall

rancilio classe 7 s 2 stone grey side
Machine TypeSemi-automatic
Dimensions (D × W × H)21.3 × 39.8 × 20.5 in
Water Tank Size2.9 gal = 371 espresso shots
Boiler TypeSingle boiler w/ heat exchanger
Number of Group Heads2–3
Use CaseCoffee shops
Warranty1 year


  • Top-of-the-range thermal stability
  • High level of energy efficiency
  • A lot of add-ons


  • Uses a single boiler

The Rancilio Classe 7 S is a great option for medium to high-volume cafes and coffee carts focusing on cost-effectiveness and ease of use.

The Rancilio has a heat exchanger on its single boiler, unlike many other options on this list. That means you can froth milk and brew coffee at the same time. However, it’s not as good as dual boilers, which offer better temperature consistency.

The temperature is better on dual and multi boilers because those machines have boilers dedicated to separate tasks (brewing and frothing). That ensures you’ll have more temperature consistency among drinks.

However, you’ll want this device to save money while producing great-tasting drinks without sacrificing efficiency.

It uses an insulated boiler, which saves money on electricity. That’s helpful for businesses trying to reduce their electricity usage. And that’s especially helpful for coffee carts, which may not have as much access to electricity.

Meanwhile, your machine doesn’t suffer performance-wise. Because usually “energy-efficient” machines sacrifice power to use less energy.

Or you could pay a bit of extra money for add-ons like the cool touch steam wand, iSteam Wand (automatic wand), and T-Switch, which tailors brewing temperatures to different group heads.

Oh yeah, you can choose between 2 or 3 group heads. I only recommend 3 group heads to businesses serving more than 300 customers daily.

Smaller businesses may want something that’s good and more affordable. Here’s an alternative.

2. Bezzera OTTO: Runner-up

bezzara otto de automtic commercial espresso machine front
Machine TypeSemi-automatic
Dimensions (D × W × H)19.6 × 19.5 × 21 in
Water Tank Size2 gal = 270 espresso shots
Boiler TypeSingle boiler
Number of Group Heads2
Use CaseMost coffee businesses
Warranty1 year


  • Auto foaming wand
  • Electric dosage setting


  • Lacks a dual boiler

The Bezzera OTTO is an exceptional espresso machine for most businesses, except those that get more than 400 people daily or during rushes.

That’s because it includes 2 group heads. Such a number of group heads allows coffee shops to serve fewer than 300 cups of coffee daily. That’s an estimate, not a definite number. Because various factors (e.g., barista speed) play a role in determining the actual number.

Opt for a machine with 3 to 4 group heads if you’re a larger shop. Such devices will serve 300–600 or more cups daily.

This machine’s one of the more affordable models on this list because it uses a single boiler instead of a dual boiler. That means you can’t froth milk and brew coffee simultaneously, which could hurt your brewing speed.

However, the auto-foamer wand sort of makes up for that. It’ll automatically froth milk without requiring the barista’s full attention. There’s less potential for mistakes when they’re stressed during rushes.

Thus, you’ll have consistent cups of coffee and happy customers.

Another feature that will improve consistency is the electronic dosage setting. It automates coffee grounds measurement.

In addition to consistency, such a feature will reduce coffee waste from measuring mistakes and inherently save money.

The OTTO balances features and cost savings, making it affordable for smaller businesses to get high(ish)-end settings that’ll improve productivity and save money.

This isn’t the most affordable machine for small businesses, though. The next device is more likely up your alley.

3. BFC Experta: Most Affordable

bfc experta front
Machine TypeSemi-automatic
Dimensions (D × W × H)9 × 16.3 × 14.9 in
Water Tank Size43 fl oz = 43 espresso shots
Boiler TypeSingle boiler
Number of Group Heads1
Use CaseSmall cafés
Warranty2 years


  • Includes a heat exchanger
  • Uses a lever


  • Only ideal for small coffee shops

The BFC Experta is an amazing device for small coffee shops, bakeries, and some restaurants that serve fewer than 50 cups of coffee daily.

The single group head and the smaller water reservoir can’t handle rushes. First, because a single group head halves the amount of coffee you can brew simultaneously compared to a machine with 2 group heads. Then the water tank will frequently require refills.

Then it uses a lever to pull shots. That grants the barista much more control over the shots, which is great for slow-paced shops that want absolute control over their taste. But it’ll require training to use.

Otherwise, you risk having inconsistent drinks.

One area where this machine is faster than others is that it has a heat exchanger. Such a feature heats the steam and the boiler at the same time. Allowing you to brew drinks while frothing milk simultaneously.

That feature alone doubles your productivity and could help a small business during an unexpected rush.

The wood feature adds aesthetic value to this machine and your shop, but it requires extra care to ensure the wood remains in good condition. Adding to maintenance time.

You’ll want this machine if you’re a small business starting out and on a budget. If you predict you’ll have rushes, or if you currently have rushes with way more than 50 people, consider a refurbished espresso machine.

You won’t have as long of a warranty, but you’ll have a more affordable device that should have no issues.

I have plenty more recommendations for smaller shops. Keep reading to see what this device is.

4. Rancilio Classe 5 S/ST 1 Group: Best for Small Coffee Shops

rancilio classe 5 s 1 group tank stone grey
Machine TypeSemi-automatic
Dimensions (D × W × H)21.22 × 16.14 × 20.47 in
Water Tank Size67 oz = 67 espresso shots
Boiler TypeSingle boiler
Number of Group Heads1
Use CaseSmall coffee shops
Warranty1 year


  • Compact size
  • Uses heat exchangers


  • No water line connection

The Rancilio Classe 5 S/ST is a fantastic espresso machine for small coffee shops and cafés that don’t have much counter space.

This machine also has a single group head, which is only suitable for small coffee houses, stands, or carts.

What makes it better than the BFC Experta?

It doesn’t use a lever, for one. That’ll increase the speed at which you or your team brews espresso. Like the Experta, it has a heat exchanger, allowing you to froth milk and brew espresso.

And it has an optional add-on for the iSteam Wand. It automates milk frothing. That’s great because it increases speed, reduces the potential for mistakes (and lost customers), and ensures consistent drinks.

Imagine your barista is tired or stressed during a rush. A mistake is bound to happen, leading to a customer never returning. Adding automation with features like the iSteam wand will help prevent that.

The machine’s size makes it perfect for smaller businesses that don’t have much counter space. But such a small tank means you’ll need to refill it more often. A design choice such as a direct plumbing connection would remedy this.

But despite the higher price of this machine, we don’t get it with the Classe 5 S/ST. However, such a design choice would likely result in the machine costing more than $5,000.

Anyway. The previous devices aren’t ideal for high-traffic businesses. The next one is.

5. Astoria Plus 4 You TS SAE3 3 Group: Best 3-Group Machine

astoria plus 4 you 2 black front
Machine TypeSemi-automatic
Dimensions (D × W × H)42.3 × 22.2 × 22.6 in
Water Tank Size3.4 gal = 400+ espresso shots
Boiler TypeMulti-boiler
Number of Group Heads3
Use CaseHigh-traffic coffee shops
Warranty1 year


  • Energy efficient
  • Includes multiple boilers


  • Does not have the longest warranty

The Astoria Plus 4 You TS SAE3 is an exceptional espresso machine for medium- to high-traffic businesses serving 300–600 drinks daily.

The 3 group heads, 2 steam wands, automatic water refilling feature, and multiple boilers all contribute to this beast being able to handle most rushes.

3 group heads and 2 steam wands allow your barista to brew more drinks simultaneously. Its independent water tanks are electronically managed to work autonomously. For instance, there’s a boiler dedicated to continuously producing steam. Then there’s one for drinks.

Such features reduce the time it’ll take for your machine to reheat after brewing. The exact amount of time depends on your usage patterns. But it could save you up to a few minutes per drink.

When your business has downtime, the Plus 4 You TS SAE3 will activate an energy-saving feature. This could reduce energy consumption by up to 47.6% compared to regular espresso machines.

Thus, saving you money on your operational expenses.

These features are amazing for productivity, but this machine does not have the most extended post-sale support period. Though most brands will have a year-long warranty, a machine that costs this much should have a prolonged period.

Consider the next pick if you’re a small business looking for a machine that’s better than what I covered earlier.

6. La Marzocco GS/3 1 Group: Best Single-Group Machine

la marzocco gs3 av auto volumetric espresso machine stainless steel
Machine TypeSemi-automatic
Dimensions (D × W × H)21 × 16 × 14 in
Water Tank Size50 fl oz = 50 espresso shots
Boiler TypeDual boiler
Number of Group Heads1
Use CaseSmall coffee shops
Warranty13 months


  • Includes a dual boiler
  • Has pre-infusion


  • A bit expensive

The La Marzocco GS/3 1 Group is an optimal choice for small businesses that need a device that’ll handle rushes.

Machines with single group heads aren’t great for businesses serving more than 50 drinks daily. However, you may be a small business that has rushes that require brewing drinks back to back quickly.

The machines I mentioned a couple of sections earlier use single boilers with heat exchangers. Those allow for simultaneous brewing and frothing. However, it could take them a minute or 2 to reheat when switching tasks.

Dual boilers don’t need to reheat for different functions (steaming and brewing) since you’re using 2 boilers. Thus, there’s no wait time when reheating. Dual boilers also provide more stable temperatures, better for drink consistency.

The automatic pre-infusion feature will also gradually apply water at low pressures to your beans. This helps extract more flavor to improve each drink’s taste. That’ll result in happier customers.

Such features are excellent for small coffee shops that want to brew quickly and provide high-quality drinks. But they also result in a higher-cost machine. It’s not the best choice for small business owners on a budget.

Espresso machines with built-in grinders aren’t common for businesses. But this next pick is great for buffets.

7. Saeco Aulika Evo Top HSC: Best With Grinder

saeco aulika evo top hsc a
Machine TypeSuper-automatic
Dimensions (D × W × H)17.7 × 13 × 22.6 in
Water Tank Size1 gal = 128 espresso shots
Boiler TypeDual boiler
Number of Group HeadsNone
Use CaseOffices
Warranty2 years


  • Includes a dual boiler
  • Compatible with payment systems


  • Not ideal for high-traffic restaurants

The Saeco Aulika Evo Top HSC is ideal for offices and businesses that offer coffee to a low number of customers daily.

How many customers? 120. That’s how many drinks this machine can produce daily without any issues.

That means it’ll do fine in cafeterias of business offices and in areas without much food traffic. Otherwise, you’ll overwhelm the machine.

However, it’s the best super-automatic machine you can get for offices due to including a dual boiler. It’ll brew drinks and froth milk simultaneously while ensuring consistency among your drinks.

It ensures consistency because it boils water and steams milk in separate tanks. Unlike what single boilers do.

This machine does support “payment systems,” but none of Saeco’s resources said which payment system. You’d need to contact their customer support if you want to charge anyone who uses this machine.

I tried and didn’t receive a response before finishing this article.

This machine isn’t good for coffee shops, though. The next one is.

8.  UNIC Stella Epic: Best Commercial Italian Espresso Machine

unic stella epic 2 black side
Machine TypeSemi-automatic
Dimensions (D × W × H)27 × 31 × 20 in
Water Tank Size55.7 fl oz = 55 espresso shots
Boiler TypeMulti-boiler
Number of Group Heads2
Use CaseHigh-traffic coffee shops
Warranty5 years


  • Precise brew ratio and extraction time control
  • Uses PID temperature control


  • High price

The UNIC Stella Epic best suits high-volume coffee shops and restaurants requiring precise coffee customization and consistent quality.

It has 2–3 group heads—depending on what you buy—allowing it to serve hundreds of customers daily without issues. Various features, such as the multi-boiler system and customizable extraction profiles, further increase its speed.

The multi-boiler system allows various functions (steam and brewing) to heat separately, which removes reheating time from your machine. This is part of the puzzle of this machine that ensures consistency among drinks.

Then there’s the Lunar ACAIA Scale Integration. It’s a feature that measures the coffee’s weight during extraction to ensure it aligns brew ratios with extraction times.

Afterward comes the Proportional Integral Derivative (PID). It’s a system that uses an algorithm to micromanage your machine’s brewing temperature. Such a feature ensures optimal extraction conditions to ensure temperature consistency with drinks.

These features result in excellent-tasting and consistent coffee but at a price. You’re paying extra to get premium features.

While great for coffee houses, it’s not optimal for other business types (e.g., restaurants). Here’s a machine that’ll work fine for restaurants and offices.

9. Gaggia Cadorna Prestige: Best Commercial Espresso Machine for Offices

gaggia cadorna prestige
Machine TypeSuper-automatic
Dimensions (D × W × H)10.2 × 17.3 × 15 in
Water Tank Size60.8 fl oz = 60 espresso shots
Boiler TypeSingle
Number of Group Heads0
Use CaseOffices, clinics, and small businesses
Warranty1 year


  • 14 pre-programmed drinks
  • Customizable coffee strength and flavor


  • Uses a ceramic burr grinder

The Gaggia Cadorna Prestige is a fantastic espresso machine for office settings, clinics, and other small businesses offering free coffee to customers and team members.

Because those use cases and businesses shouldn’t have an espresso machine with a group head. Otherwise, you’d need a trained barista to operate it.

It’s a super-automatic machine, which means you press one of the pre-programmed drinks, and it’ll brew it. It’ll grind, time the shot, dispense your drink, and froth the milk.

Here are the drinks it can make:

Café Au LaitLatte MacchiatoFrothed milkFlat White
Hot water

Furthermore, it’ll allow you to customize the drink’s strength and flavor. Perfect for allowing team members or customers to adjust the drink to their preference.

It has a built-in ceramic conical burr grinder since it’s a super-automatic machine.

Ceramic burrs are better than steel ones because they’ll typically last longer and have minimal heat transfer. The latter means they won’t heat up as much, which could burn your beans and make them bitter.


Ceramic burrs are brittle and susceptible to breaking if debris enters the grinder. Then you’d need to order a new burr or call someone to replace it.

Regardless, it’s an exceptional device for any business that offers free coffee because it’s affordable and offers a lot of drink options.

This next pick is better for businesses focusing on aesthetics.

10. La Pavoni Bar Lever 2 Groups: Best Manual Espresso Machine

la pavoni bar lever 2 black
Machine TypeManual
Dimensions (D × W × H)21 × 31 × 21 in
Water Tank Size3.69 gal = 472 espresso shots
Boiler TypeSingle
Number of Group Heads2
Use CaseBoutique coffee shops
Warranty1 year


  • Absolute control over drinks
  • Some automation


  • Learning curve

The La Pavoni Bar Lever 2 Groups is an ideal machine for boutique coffee shops who want to focus on aesthetics and absolute control over your drinks.

This machine will automate water boiling and pumping, unlike most manual machines that require manual input on every step. However, you’ll need to time every shot.

If you’re reading this section, then this is what you want. But if you and your team aren’t familiar with using lever espresso machines, you’ll need a lot of practice to time your shots perfectly. Otherwise, you won’t have great-tasting coffee.

And regardless if you time them perfectly, you likely won’t have consistent shots due to the lack of automation.

But this machine is the best you’re going to get if you’re after something that’ll allow you to craft espresso by hand.

There’s not much to cover with this machine and I wish that I could do more to push you to spend money on it, but it has a specific use case. And if you’re not in that group of businesses that would have no use for this device, then you’ll need to keep looking.

I saved the best option for last. Keep reading to see what it is.

11. Sanremo Opera 2.0: Best Expensive Machine

sanremo opera 2.0 black 2 group
Machine TypeSemi-automatic
Dimensions (D × W × H)2 group: 25.2 × 29.3 × 17.3 in
3 group: 25.2 × 40.9 × 17.3 in
Water Tank Size2.11 gal = 270 espresso shots
Boiler TypeMulti-boiler
Number of Group HeadsAvailable in 2 or 3 group models
Use CaseHigh-traffic coffee shops
Warranty1 year


  • Automatic cleaning cycle
  • Superb temperature management


  • Specialized features may be underutilized in some settings

The Sanremo Opera 2.0 is the best espresso machine for most coffee businesses. It even works for high-traffic businesses due to it having a 3 group head option available.

It’ll ensure consistency in ALL drinks due to it including the following features and design choices:

  • Multi-boiler: Heats steam and water in separate tanks.
  • Insulated steam wand: No losing temperature when steaming your milk.
  • PID controller: Makes microscopic adjustments to your machine’s temperatures.
  • Insulated boiler: Maintains temperatures.

The insulated boiler also can save you up to 40% on electricity bills. That’s a nice way to save money after you just spent $27,000 on an espresso machine.

But it’s worth getting.

Partially because of the  Control Coffee Delivery System (CDS). This feature enhances customization for different coffee types, boosts efficiency, and elevates the customer experience. Ideal for businesses focusing on high-quality coffee​.

The automatic cleaning cycle in the Sanremo Opera 2.0 espresso machine works by automatically dispensing water through the coffee groups to clean them.

That’s great for businesses because it allows baristas to focus on other tasks.

That’s it for recommendations. Learn whether you’re making the right choice.

Commercial Espresso Machine Buying Guide

Consider these factors when shopping for an espresso machine for your business:

FactorExplanation & Importance
Number of Group HeadsDetermines machine’s serving capacity.
BrandReflects quality, reputation, and reliability.
FeaturesEnhances versatility, convenience, and control.
PriceAffects budget and investment value.
Water Tank SizeInfluences refill frequency and capacity.
Machine TypeDictates functionality and user-friendliness.
Drinks It Can MakeExpands menu variety and customer appeal.
Boiler TypeImpacts heat consistency and speed.
After-Sales Support & WarrantyEnsures long-term service and reliability.
Energy EfficiencyReduces operational costs, eco-friendly.
Where It’s FromDetermines cost and potential issues with logistics
Grinder CompatibilityAffects coffee quality and customization.

The following sections will dive deeper into each of these factors.

1. Number of Group Heads

# of Group Heads1234
Cups per Day Served<5050–300300–600>600

Here’s a further breakdown of what shops would benefit from certain numbers of group heads:

  • Coffee shops:
    • <300 cups/day: 2-group
    • 300–500 cups/day: 3-group
    • >600 cups/day: 4-group
  • Bars & Restaurants: 1-group
  • Offices: Super-automatic or capsule espresso machines (1-group)
  • Bakery: 1-group

An espresso machine rental company says that more than 70% of their rentals were 2-group machines [1].

This fits with my experience that most businesses will need 2-group espresso machines.

When considering group heads, you’ll need to consider how many cups of coffee you’ll make during rushes. Most small coffee shops that don’t have too many people during rushes can get away with a single group head.

Restaurants, offices, and clinics needing an espresso machine will want super-automatic machines that don’t have any group heads. Because your team or customers are serving themselves.

They likely don’t have the barista skills needed to use a portafilter.

But in most cases, you’ll want to consider upgrading to at least a 2-group machine.

More group heads mean serving more customers simultaneously. This is crucial for handling high foot traffic.

A machine with multiple group heads can make several coffees at once. This reduces waiting time for customers, especially during peak hours. It boosts customer satisfaction and increases potential sales.

Let’s transition into brands.

Summary: Most coffee shops should consider using espresso machines with 2 group heads. Stores serving more than 300 people daily should consider 3-4 group heads. That said, you need to consider your

2. Brand

Brands like Rancilio, often charge more due to their reputation. They offer advanced features and consistent performance. Higher prices also reflect superior materials and craftsmanship.

Well-known brands often provide better customer service and warranty. This ensures long-term support and machine durability. Investing in a reputable brand can mean fewer maintenance issues. It also means gaining customer trust with a known quality product.

Here are examples of brands that offer commercial espresso machines:

La MarzoccoNuova SimonelliRancilioFaema
UNICRocket EspressoBFCFiamma
La PavaniBarista AttitudeGaggiaWaveman
WegaMavamVictoria ArduinoLa Cimbali
SlayerLa SpazialeElektra

Some brands will include more features on their espresso machines like…

Summary: Some brands, like Rancilio, typically charge more due to having higher-quality machines and customer trust.

3. Features

Commercial espresso machines will typically include the following features:

FeatureExplanation & Importance
PIDPrecise temperature management
Programmable SettingsCustomizes shots for consistency, saves time.
Pre-InfusionEnhances flavor, ensures even extraction.
Built-in GrinderOffers freshness, streamlines process.
With Steam WandAllows baristas to froth milk for drinks like cappuccinos.

Only commercial super-automatic machines will include grinders, and these aren’t common. Most machines will include programmable settings. However, not as many of them will have PID and pre-infusion.

The former is ideal for precise temperature management for consistent drinks. Since it micromanages your boiler’s temperature. The latter pre-wets beans to enhance overall flavor extraction.

All semi-automatic and automatic espresso machines will include steam wands, which give you more control over your milk’s texture. Resulting in better drinks. Many machines will include automatic steam wands.

Super-automatic machines will typically include automatic milk frothers, which don’t produce as flavorful of milk foam.

If machines have such features, they’ll cost more.

Summary: Almost all commercial espresso machines will include steam wands. Higher-end models will include programmable settings, PID, and pre-infusion.

4. Price

Average price:

  • Single group head: $2,000 – $4,000
  • 2 Group heads: $4,000 – $8,000
  • 3 Group heads: $7,000 – $12,000
  • Super-automatic: $5,000 – $20,000

Factors that’ll impact the price of a commercial espresso machine includes:

  • Group heads: More heads increase capacity and cost.
  • Machine type: Super-automatics are pricier due to automation.
  • Materials: High-quality materials raise the price.
  • Brand reputation: Reputable brands often charge more.
  • Features: Advanced features like programmability add cost.
  • Technology: Innovations in espresso technology impact price.
  • After-sales support: Better warranty and service add value.

Brand reputation seems to have the biggest impact on price, then the number of group heads.

Water tank size and whether it has direct plumbing connection will also impact the price. Let’s dive deeper into that point.

5. Water Tank Size

Most espresso machines for businesses will connect directly to your shop’s water line. This allows you to connect the machine to water filters and eliminates the need to refill your water tank.

Not all machines incorporate this design choice, though.

The ones that do include direct water connections require professional installation and plumbing setup.

Ongoing maintenance for plumbing connections adds to costs. Despite higher initial investment, they offer convenience and uninterrupted operation. This can be a valuable trade-off for busy coffee shops.

However, you can’t move these machines around, which isn’t ideal for coffee carts. You’ll need an espresso machine with a large water tank. And I said “large” because you want to ensure you won’t need to refill it frequently.

Doing so will ruin your productivity since you’ll run back and forth to the sink.

The next factor will talk about machine type.

Summary: Most commercial espresso machines connect directly to plumbing. But if you want to move the machine around, you’ll need to make sure you have a large water tank.

6. Machine Type

Let’s compare machine types:

Machine TypeWhat it AutomatesBest forPrice
Super-automaticEverythingRestaurants, offices, buffets, and clinics$2000–$35,000
Semi-automaticPressure & water flowCoffee shops, stands, and carts$1000–$20,000
AutomaticGrinding, tamping, & brewingCoffee shops and restaurants $1500–$30,000
ManualNothingBoutique cafes, artisan coffee shops, high-end restaurants$2,000 – $10,000
CapsuleEverythingHotels & offices$100–$500

Super-automatic espresso machines are fantastic for offices, restaurants, and other businesses that need to dispense espresso quickly. Meanwhile, you’d have a drink with identical temperatures and tastes every time.

These machines don’t have group heads and have built-in grinders. They’re excellent for customers and guests to serve themselves. Or for team members you don’t want to teach how to prepare an espresso puck.

They don’t offer much control over espresso preparation. Some machines will have features that’ll allow you to customize the shot timing and such. However, a semi-automatic machine’s granular control allows you to produce more flavorful drinks.

Not many businesses use automatic machines. I couldn’t find any to add to this list.

Capsule machines—think Keurig or Nespresso—are bad for coffee shops, restaurants, and for businesses that offer free coffee. Because these are single-serve machines that don’t produce high-quality coffee.

They’re not great for clinics because you must rely on customers to deal with pods. I could imagine a customer leaving a pod in the machine, which will lead to mold growth due to the moisture in the pod.

It’s bad for restaurants because these machines don’t have large water reservoirs. Your team would need to refill them after every few cups, which is bad for time management.

There are commercial versions of Keurig machines, which you could use for offices. I recommend the K-Suite for small offices (1–10 people). Or the K-2500 for larger teams.

What about Nespresso machines?

Many hotels will add cheap Nespresso Original Line machines to rooms to market additional amenities to guests.

Businesses valuing craft and customer experience should consider manual machines. They offer a unique, hands-on brewing method. Ideal for establishments prioritizing artisanal quality and presentation.


Manual machines aren’t generally suited for most businesses. They require skilled operation and are time-consuming. This can lead to inefficiency in high-volume settings. They also lack consistency, crucial for fast-paced or less specialized environments.

Let’s talk about drinks these machines can brew.

Summary: Most businesses will use semi-automatic machines. Offices, restaurants, buffets, and other self-serving businesses should use super-automatics.

7. Drinks It Can Make

Commercial espresso machines can make the following drinks:

Espresso shotsAmericanoLatteCappuccino
MacchiatoFlat whiteLungoDoppio

So long as the espresso machine includes a steam wand or milk frother, which almost all do, they can make milk-based drinks like lattes and cappuccinos.

There’s nothing else to cover here. Moving on.


All commercial espresso machines can make any espresso-based drink.

8. Boiler Type

Boiler TypeProsConsBest For
Single BoilerAffordable, compact.Slower, less temperature control.Low-volume, tight budgets.
Dual BoilerBetter temperature control, efficient.More expensive, larger.Moderate traffic, variety.
Multi BoilerExcellent control, high capacity.Costly, requires more space.High-volume, diverse menu.

Small cafés and coffee shops will do fine with a single boiler, but they can’t brew coffee and steam milk simultaneously. That’s not ideal for tackling rushes. However, some single boilers will also include a heat exchanger, which allows you to also steam milk.

These machines cost more, though.

High-traffic shops will do better with dual boilers. And multi boilers are excellent for super-high traffic shops.

Summary: Multi boilers cost the most, but are best for multi-tasking and speed. Single boilers are the most affordable, but aren’t ideal for high-traffic environments.

9. After-Sales Support & Warranty

After-sales support and warranties ensure long-term reliability and performance. Good support minimizes downtime during repairs. This is vital to maintain consistent service.

Warranties protect against defects and breakdowns. They reduce repair costs, safeguarding your investment.

Typical warranty lengths for commercial espresso machines range from 1 to 3 years. Some brands offer extended warranties. 

If you buy the machines here at Tim’s Coffee, we always offer a minimum of 1-year warranty on parts and labor. 

More extended warranties reflect confidence in product durability. They provide peace of mind and financial security. This is important for high-use, commercial environments.

A couple more points to go.

Summary: Warranties typically last 1 to 3 years for commercial espresso machines.

10. Energy Efficiency

Energy-efficient machines often have insulated boilers, reducing heat loss. Programmable settings allow for energy-saving modes during off-peak hours. Automatic shut-off features also conserve energy.


Energy-efficient models may have higher upfront costs due to advanced technology. Some may heat up slower, impacting service speed during rush hours. The balance between efficiency and performance is key.

Machines that save money on electricity are also better for coffee carts, since they don’t typically have much access to electricity.

Weigh initial costs against long-term savings and operational needs.

One more point.

Summary: Energy-efficient machines cost more upfront due to having better boilers and heat management, but will save you money on electricity in the long run.

11. Where It’s From

You’ll primarily find commercial espresso machines made in the United States and Italy. Some of the cheaper super-automatic grinders are made in China.

Italian machines may mean longer shipping times and higher import costs. However, they often offer unique quality and style.

American-made machines often promise shorter delivery times. They also ensure easier access to parts and service. This can mean quicker repairs and less downtime.

Summary: Most commercial espresso machines are made in Italy and the United States.

12. Grinder Compatibility

The right grinder ensures that coffee grounds are the ideal size for your machine, maximizing flavor extraction. If you use an incompatible grinder, you might get grounds that are too coarse or fine, leading to weak or bitter espresso.

For instance:

The La Marzocco Linea Mini espresso machine pairs well with the Mazzer Mini Electronic Type A grinder. They’re compatible because the Mazzer grinder can consistently produce the fine, uniform grounds that the Linea Mini requires for optimal espresso extraction.

The grinder’s electronic dosing allows for precise amounts of coffee, further enhancing the Linea Mini’s performance.

What makes commercial espresso machines different from regular ones?

Summary: Ensure you get a coffee grinder that’ll produce grounds fine enough for your espresso maker.

What Are Commercial Espresso Machines?

A commercial espresso machine is a high-capacity coffee maker designed for use in businesses like cafés, restaurants, and coffee shops.

They can quickly produce many espresso shots, often simultaneously, using multiple group heads. It also features robust build quality and advanced temperature controls for consistent results.

In contrast:

A home espresso machine is smaller and simpler. Designed for personal use. It usually has a single group head and lacks the advanced features of commercial models.

The main difference between the 2 lies in their intended use. Commercial machines do best in high-volume, professional settings. Home machines work for casual, personal use.

That’s it. I recommend you keep reading to find frequently asked questions, though.

FAQs for Commercial Espresso Machines

Read on to find frequently asked questions about espresso machines for businesses.

What Type of Espresso Machine Does Starbucks Use?

Almost all Starbucks locations worldwide will use custom-made Mastrena super-automatic machines. Many of their roastery locations will use the Victoria Arduino Black Eagle.

What are the Different Drive Types for an Espresso Machine?

Espresso machines operate with lever or pump-driven mechanisms. Lever types rely on manual force for water pressure, while pumps use electric or manual pumps for consistent pressure.


Here’s a review of our top picks:

  1. Rancilio Classe 7 S: Comes in 2 or 3 group head models and energy-efficient.
  2. Bezzera OTTO: Balances features and affordability.
  3. BFC Experta: Great for slow-paced features that value aesthetics and brewing control.

I chose the Rancilio Classe 7 S as the top pick because it has 2 group heads, which is an ideal number of group heads for most coffee shops. It also has features that’ll improve brewing speed and consistency.

Do you need a coffee grinder for your shop as well? Consider our picks.

rancilio classe 7 s 2 stone grey side

Rancilio Classe 7 S: Best Overall

  • Price: $7,830
  • Type: Semi-automatic
  • Dimensions: 21.3 × 39.8 × 20.5 in
  • Water Tank Size: 2.9 gal = 371 espresso shots
  • Boiler Type: Single boiler w/ heat exchanger
  • Number of Group Heads: 1-2
  • Use Case: Coffee Shops
  • Warranty: 1 year
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Tim Lee is, as you might have guessed the founder of He is a former barista and a professional web publisher. He has now combined his knowledge and expertise in both subjects to create
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2 thoughts on “11 Best Commercial Espresso & Coffee Machines in 2024”

  1. Hey Tim,

    Just finished reading some of your articles. And I have to say, I’ve learned a lot. As someone who’s been toying with the idea of opening a small café, this info is invauble!


    • Hi Jordan,

      Thanks so much for the kind words! It’s great to hear that the article was helpful for you. A lot of time and effort goes into researching and writing these pieces. So your feedback is truly appreciated.

      Best of luck with your café venture!

      All the best,


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