STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker: A Hands-On Review

Published on Jan. 26, 2024, 9:19 a.m.

For coffee lovers who want barista-quality espresso on the go, the STARESSO SP-200 Classic is an excellent choice. This handy little manual espresso maker delivers rich, intense espresso without batteries or electricity. Keep reading for our hands-on review of this portable powerhouse!

Overview

The STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker is a compact, lightweight manual espresso machine made by Italian brand STARESSO. Key specs:

  • Weight: 0.88 lbs
  • Capacity: 2.8 oz
  • Pressure: Up to 20 bars
  • Material: 304 Stainless Steel, food-grade silicone
  • Compatibility: Nespresso-style capsules and ground coffee

 STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker

Highlights:

  • Portable and lightweight
  • Manual hand-press operation
  • Durable 304 stainless steel
  • Powerful 20 bar pressure
  • Versatile 2-in-1 design

Design - Compact and Durable

The STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker features a sleek cylindrical design with durable 304 stainless steel construction. Measuring approximately 5.5 cm in diameter and 15 cm in height, and weighing around 0.4 kg, it’s easy to take with you wherever you go, whether you’re traveling, camping, or commuting. The textured silicone grip offers a comfortable hold, even with wet hands. Overall, the STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker is designed to be compact, durable, and ready to satisfy your coffee cravings anytime, anywhere.

 STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker

Ease of Use - Straightforward Manual Operation

As a completely manual device, the STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker prioritizes simplicity. Just add hot water and coffee grounds or a capsule, then pump the lever by hand. After about 30 pumps, rich crema espresso starts flowing into the glass cup in 1-2 minutes. The process is straightforward and hands-on.

Brewing Types - Ground Coffee and Capsules

The versatile 2-in-1 design allows brewing both ground coffee and Nespresso-style coffee capsules. This flexibility lets you enjoy fresh ground coffee or the convenience of capsules.

Suitable Coffee Types

The STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker can brew shots, standard espresso, and longer drinks like americanos. The 20 bar pressure extracts optimal flavor from different coffee types.

 STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker

Coffee Quality - Intense and Aromatic

Utilizing its segmented pressure technique, the STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker delivers espresso with an intense coffee aroma, a fine crema, and rich coffee layers. With the first sip, you’ll be greeted by an explosion of rich coffee fragrance, followed by a smooth and velvety crema coating your palate, and finally, a symphony of distinct coffee flavors dancing on your taste buds. Whether you enjoy pure espresso shots or craft lattes and cappuccinos, the STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker promises an unparalleled coffee experience.

Temperature - No Heating Element

Without an internal heating element, the STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker relies on the user to provide hot water. This saves battery power and makes the device fully manual.

Pressure - Up to 20 Bars

The STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker employs a unique segmented pressure system to generate up to 20 bars of pressure. This high-pressure extraction effectively releases the coffee’s flavor and oils, producing rich and intense espresso comparable to professional espresso machines.

Water Tank - 80ml Capacity

The water tank holds 80ml, enough water to pull 1-2 shots before refilling. The tank is small by design for portability and single serve brewing.

Innovations - Segmented Pressure

The unique segmented pressure technique sets the STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker apart from other portable espresso makers. It achieves cafe-level pressure in a compact manual device.

Additional Features

The STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker focuses solely on manual espresso preparation without unnecessary features like timers or temperature controls. This minimizes cost and complexity.

Portability - Lightweight and Go-Anywhere

The STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker is not only lightweight but also easy to store, carry, and clean. Its compact size allows it to fit easily into backpacks, purses, or suitcases, so you can enjoy delicious coffee wherever you go. Additionally, its detachable design makes it simple to clean, requiring only a rinse under running water.

Noise - Typical Pumping Noise

The pumping action produces moderate noise comparable to using a bicycle pump. It’s not disruptive enough to be a problem indoors.

Safety - Food Grade Materials

All materials touching water and coffee are food-grade stainless steel and silicone. This ensures safety and sanitation.

Power Source - Human Power!

No batteries or electricity required! The manual piston generates all the needed pressure through human power.

Cleaning - Simple Rinsing

Thanks to the removable parts, cleaning just involves rinsing under running water. A included brush cleans the fine filter mesh. The STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker is not dishwasher safe.

Cost of Ownership - Just Coffee!

With no disposable filters or descaling needed, the only recurring cost is coffee! The STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker provides long-term value.

Brand & History - Italian Innovation

STARESSO is an Italian brand with 20+ years of coffee experience. They are known for portable innovation.

 STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker

Ideal Use Cases:

The STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker is perfect for espresso lovers who are always on the go. Its lightweight, compact size makes it ideal for activities like:

  • Camping trips in the great outdoors
  • Road trips with the family
  • Commuting to work or school each day
  • Business trips and traveling abroad
  • Days at the park, beach, or tailgating parties

With the SP-200, you’ll always have cafe-quality espresso whenever and wherever you want it.

User Feedback Analysis:

Pros:

  • Portable and lightweight
  • Simple manual operation
  • Durable stainless steel material
  • Powerful pressure up to 20 bars
  • Versatile 2-in-1 compatibility
  • Delivers rich, aromatic espresso
  • No batteries or electricity required

Cons:

  • Manual pumping can be tiring
  • Small water tank capacity
  • Not the simplest to clean
  • Brewing speed is slow

Value for Money - Just Coffee!

The STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker is not only powerful and easy to use but also highly cost-effective. Unlike other espresso makers that require disposable paper filters or capsules, the STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker is reusable and requires only coffee grounds to produce delicious espresso, saving you money in the long run.

In addition, the STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker is priced very reasonably, allowing you to enjoy barista-quality espresso at an affordable price.

Recommendation

For incredible espresso on the go, the STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker is a must-have. This high-performing manual device delivers coffeehouse quality and convenience anywhere. Perfect for travel and outdoor adventures!

Specifications:

  • Weight: 0.88 lbs
  • Capacity: 2.8 oz
  • Pressure: Up to 20 bars
  • Materials: 304 Stainless Steel, silicone
  • Compatibility: Ground coffee, Nespresso-style capsules

What’s in the box:

  • 1 x STARESSO SP-200 Espresso Maker
  • 1 x Glass cup
  • Instruction manual
  • Brush for cleaning
  • Extra O-rings
  • Measuring cup

STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker User Manual

Getting Started

  1. Before using your STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker for the first time, please wash all parts with warm water and mild soap.
  2. To make espresso, you will need finely ground coffee beans.
  3. Fill the water tank with hot water, but do not exceed the maximum fill line.
  4. Assemble the espresso maker according to the instructions below.
  5. Add your ground coffee to the filter basket.
  6. Screw the filter basket onto the espresso maker.
  7. Place a cup under the spout.
  8. Slowly and evenly press the plunger down to extract the espresso.
  9. Enjoy your delicious espresso!

Making Different Espresso Drinks

  • To make a cappuccino, simply froth milk and add it to your espresso.
  • To make a latte, steam milk and add it to your espresso.
  • To make an Americano, add hot water to your espresso.

Tips for Making Great Espresso

  • Use fresh, finely ground coffee beans.
  • Preheat your espresso maker by running hot water through it before adding coffee.
  • Tamp the coffee grounds firmly into the filter basket.
  • Apply even and steady pressure when pressing the plunger.
  • Experiment with different grind sizes and tamping pressure to find your perfect cup of espresso.

Cleaning and Maintenance

  • After each use, disassemble your espresso maker and wash all parts with warm water and mild soap.
  • Allow all parts to air dry completely before reassembling.
  • For best results, descale your espresso maker every month.

Troubleshooting

  • If your espresso is not extracting properly, make sure that the coffee grounds are tamped firmly into the filter basket and that you are applying even and steady pressure when pressing the plunger.
  • If your espresso is too weak, try using a finer grind of coffee beans.
  • If your espresso is too strong, try using a coarser grind of coffee beans.

Safety Precautions

  • Do not use your espresso maker if it is damaged.
  • Do not touch the hot parts of the espresso maker during or immediately after use.
  • Do not place your espresso maker on a hot surface or near a heat source.
  • Keep your espresso maker out of reach of children.

Warranty

Your STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker is covered by a one-year warranty against defects in materials and workmanship. For warranty service, please contact the manufacturer.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Can I use both ground coffee and capsules with the STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker?
  • Yes! The STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker boasts a 2-in-1 design, allowing you to enjoy the flexibility of using either your favorite pre-ground coffee (fine grind recommended) or compatible capsules.

  • How much espresso does the STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker make per serving?

  • Designed for a single serving, the STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker extracts approximately 30-50ml (1-1.7 oz) of espresso per use. The water tank holds 80ml, enabling you to top off your creation if desired.

  • What is the maximum pressure the STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker can generate?

  • This portable espresso maker is engineered to generate up to 20 bars (290 PSI) of pressure, delivering a rich and flavorful espresso extraction with a beautiful layer of crema.

  • Is the STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker easy to clean?

  • Absolutely! The STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker features a thoughtfully designed removable construction. This allows for quick and easy cleaning of all components, ensuring a consistently delicious espresso experience.

  • How durable is the STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker for travel and outdoor use?

  • The STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker is designed to be your on-the-go companion. With its robust construction featuring a 304 stainless steel pressure pump, tank liner, powder cup, and aluminum threads, you can reliably brew quality espresso wherever your adventures take you.

Tips

  • Pre-heat your parts: For the best possible espresso extraction, run a cycle of hot water through the STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker before adding your coffee grounds or capsule. This warms up the internal components, ensuring optimal brewing temperature.

  • Use freshly ground coffee: Grinding your beans just before brewing maximizes flavor and aroma. Aim for a fine grind for the ideal espresso extraction.

  • Tamp your grounds (if using): If you’re using ground coffee, lightly tamp it down in the powder cup to ensure even water distribution and a balanced shot.

  • Experiment with pressure: The STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker gives you control. Play with the pumping pressure to fine-tune your espresso’s strength and flavor profile.

  • Descale regularly: Depending on your water’s hardness, descaling your STARESSO SP-200 Classic Portable Espresso Maker periodically will help maintain optimal performance and flavor extraction.