Office espresso - single person. Is it worth it?

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#1: Post by DoubleR »

I'm looking at options to achieve better coffee than what my office provides. My office has a lot of large large super auto machines with Starbucks coffee in it. I'm looking for my own personal setup. A few things to note.

1. Our office space is an open office environment and nobody has their own office and instead it is a flexible work space environment. Therefore a permanent setup is not an option. It's something that I would use and put away when I'm done.

2. The offices do have small personal lockers on each floor. So I can leave things in the office.

3. This is a large corporate office with a capacity of around 2,000 people and outsourced facilities management. So suggestions to do something different than the current super auto machines won't work.

4. It is important that I can make coffee relatively fast and don't spend a ton of time on making coffee. My days are mostly packed with meetings and I won't have the luxury of just hanging out making coffee. So speed/ease of workflow is important.

My thoughts.
Option 1: Cometeer coffee.
Option 2: Robot, manual grinder, and a collapsible kettle.
Option 3: Aeropress or other options.

Option 1, Cometeer. I've been using these recently and am enjoying them when in a rush. With that said, I'm always wishing I had the option for something a bit more involved and better quality in the cup.

Option 2: Robot. I really like this idea, but I worry it is a bigger hassle than it's worth. The need to hand grind the beans, prep the shot, pull, and cleanup is what has me worried. I've never used a Robot, so maybe it is super quick and easy, but if it would end up being a lot of work it would end up being a waste and I'd just default to Cometeer.

Option 3: Aeropress or other. I ruled out V60's or similar. When comparing pour overs to Cometeer I would likely just default to Cometeer. Aeropress on the other hand, I have never used, so I'm not sure what type of drink that produces or the workflow.

Looking for some thoughts and options, much appreciated.

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#2: Post by danetrainer »

Pico Presso, King K4 grinder, & a collapsible kettle, you'll be all in for well under $300 and with great beans you'll rival what you can make at home with very little fuss.
I spent 3 months this summer using this setup every morning, tent camping, rv trailer, and a house without any other coffee making gear.


#3: Post by Trop_de_Cafe »

1. Nespresso?
2. A short break and a walk to a nearby coffee shop? (It adds up, but there are probably other benefits)
3. Immersion brew: Buy an electric kettle (or ask your office manager to buy one), grind a dose of coffee into a Ziplock bag in the morning and take to work with a filter and a Clever Coffee Dripper?

I work in a large open office where the senior staff are deeply invested in coffee, and we have all the non-espresso gear you could want in the kitchen, so it it is not uncommon for staff to make a cup at some point in the day, but in a busy work environment, in an office 60-70x larger, I can't imagine getting into elaborate solo coffee-making routines, particularly in the absence of a coffee-interested culture.

At some point you are chasing diminishing returns and have to ask what is the itch you are trying to scratch / what is the fix you think you need? Or as you put it in your subject line, Office espresso - Is it worth it? I'm sorry to be negative, but for me, the answer would be a clear no, although I'd probably try option 2 or 3 if I felt I _needed_ coffee during the day.

DoubleR (original poster)
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#4: Post by DoubleR (original poster) »

Thanks for the comments. I'm actually liking the idea of the Picopresso. I've never looked into that before, but after doing a bit of research tonight I bought one along with a Kinu M47. Worst case scenario I have a travel setup. My guess is that I'll get decent usage out of this at the office.

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#5: Post by danetrainer »

You should be up to speed in no time, I use a preheat method just like you would with a Flair or Robot. What I use for the Pico is a small styrofoam bowl, keeping the filter basket out to do your grounds prep, but screw the big ring in the bottom, about 10 pumps into the styrofoam bowl and leave it sit in there to preheat. Dump all the water, give it a couple pumps to clear the chamber, load the prepped filter basket, about 10 pumps to prime then slow and steady pumps to get the volume you want.


#6: Post by Janika79 »

Get a good insulated coffee mug and take some coffee from home. That's what I do and it works for me. Otherwise I could think of an electric Moka pot and a hand grinder.


#7: Post by dyno »

I send the wife to work with 125 mL glass jars of espresso. There's room for milk after you load your double shot.

I used an Aeropress when my main machine went down and found the coffee somewhat weak and lifeless. The Robot setup would seem to be more work than you have time for.


#8: Post by AZRich »

Having made over 2K coffee's with my aeropress in the last 2+ years as my daily driver I'd suggest that and not espresso. I almost never use my V60, and don't make espresso any more in my home. I settled on basically inventor Alan Adler's method which is fast and easy after trying dozens of other youtube recipes over the years. Besides great coffee, cleanup is super fast - maybe 15 sec's unlike the mess and time required for espresso. It's a small kit easily stored away in a drawer. The majority of my time to make a coffee is spent waiting for the water to reach my preferred temp. From the time my water is ready I'd say I am all done, cleaned up, and drinking coffee in under 2 minutes.

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#9: Post by lancealot »

The demands of my use case are similar to yours. I don't think office espresso makes sense in your case. IMO. I use a Clever Dripper to make 1 or 2 cups at a time of nice black coffee. It is a variation on your Option 3.

Clever dripper, I think it is perfect for my personal office coffee. Consistently good, quick and relatively little thought has to go into it. Easy to clean up. You'll need a kettle. The clever does not require a gooseneck kettle. I use a hand grinder. It is quiet and does a good job. Bout 40 seconds to grind 30 grams, it is meditative. The whole process takes 5-6 minutes.

I used to use the AeroPress. The beverage it makes is good, it is easy to use and clean up. The reason I moved away from it is the beverage it produces was too small for me. It makes 200-225ml (~6oz) of strong black coffee. The beverage is similar but with a thinner mouthfeel to the beverage you would get if you poured 4oz of hot water into a shot of espresso. The AeroPress does not make espresso. IME the recipes that allow you to make a 8oz or 10oz beverage by making a super-concentrated AeroPress and then diluting it are a faff.

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#10: Post by baldheadracing »

I had a small SBDU espresso machine - a Mokita, similar in size/technology to a Lelit Anna, and a hand grinder (Hausgrind).

The machine easily fit in the bottom of an office locker.

Before that, I used an Espro press at the office, and back then I ground the coffee at home every morning to bring in.
-"Good quality brings happiness as you use it" - Nobuho Miya, Kamasada