Discover your perfect brew with a Bialetti Stovetop Espresso. Here's our guide to selecting the correct size, how to get the best from your new moka pot and our FAQ.
If you're a coffee enthusiast on the lookout for a way to produce exceptional coffee easily and safely at home without all the mess and fuss of an electric machine, allow us to introduce you to the Bialetti Stovetop Espresso. Here's our guide to how to select the best model and size for you (and, more importantly, your hob/cooktop), how to get started, how to care for your machine and a few troubleshooting tips and tricks. Let's go!
First off, are Bialetti Stovetops safe?
Rest assured, Bialetti espresso makers are designed with your safety in mind. All Bialetti machines operate on a pressure system, creating a seamless brewing process.
Before your initial use, it's important to follow a few simple steps:
- separate the top (5) from the base (1),
- detach the filter funnel (2), the filter plate (4), and the rubber/silicone washer (3)
- wash all components in hot water
- reassemble the top section - and you're set to embark on your coffee journey. (We recommend putting two 'brews' through the machine using water only (ie, no coffee) to seat the silicone seal into place.
Compatibility with Heat Sources
One of the most appealing aspects of Bialetti espresso makers is their versatility. Whether you're using a gas, electric, ceramic, or even an induction cooktop (look for "Suitable for Induction" on the Venus model box), these espresso makers perform effortlessly, brewing your favorite coffee blend to perfection.
Crafting Your Perfect Brew
Achieving the ideal cup of coffee with your Bialetti espresso maker is a breeze. Here's how:
Fill the water tank (base) with fresh, clean, room temperature water, ensuring it's just below the safety valve level. Avoid overfilling, as this could lead to overboiling and a bitter taste.
Insert the filter funnel and gently fill it with your favourite espresso ground coffee. There's no need to pack the coffee down, just gently level it off.
Screw the top section to the base securely but avoid overtightening.
Place your machine onto your cooktop on a low to medium heat, adjusting the flame on a gas hob to avoid the flames licking up the side of the base which will protect the handle and valve.
Leave the lid open during the brewing process. Your coffee should be finished in approximately 3-6 minutes (depending on size of your machine and heat intensity). As your Moka pot finishes brewing, you'll hear a hissing, bubbling sound. This is the last of the liquid from the lower chamber being pushed up through the grounds.
- Make sure to remove the coffee pot from the heat as soon as it's finished brewing. Be very careful never to leave the moka pot unattended while it's on the heat as this can result in irreversible damage to the valve mechanism and warping of the metal base.
Tips for the Best Results
As mentioned above, seasoning your espresso pot by passing a few brews through using only water (ie no coffee grounds) is recommended to ensure the silicone seal is seated into place.
- Use a medium-fine grind of your favourite coffee blend. A medium-fine will feel gritty when rubbed between your fingers, not powdery. We recommend you avoid ultra fine espresso grinds intended for electric espresso machines as these are too fine and may block your Bialetti.
- Do not be tempted to use instant coffee in your Bialetti - it won;t work. Similarly, infusions and flavourings.
Selecting the Correct Size
Choosing the appropriate size of Bialetti espresso maker is crucial. This is espresso coffee so it's a full flavoured, robust brew. Each 'cup' size of Bialetti produces about 60mls. Feel free to add freshly boiled water or hot milk to taste.
Remember, using the correct size ensures an even flow of water through the coffee, resulting in a perfect brewing experience. It is important for optimal operation to ensure that you use your Bialetti with optimal measures of coffee grinds and water - half measures won't allow the Bialetti build the correct pressure which can result in damage to your pot. Many of our customers have three or four moka pots which allow them to serve coffee to one person or to a crowd!
Caring for Your Bialetti
- Never place the espresso maker on a heat source without water.
- Avoid using the handle as a lever, especially when the machine is hot. Allow the pot to cool or run it under cold water before unscrewing.
- When finished and before storage, ensure the machine is rinsed and dried. We recommend storing with the lid only loosely screwed on to minimise damage to the silicone seal.
Bialetti Espresso Maker Sizes
Selecting the correct size for your needs:
- 1 Cup: Height 13.5cm, Base width 7.0cm
- 2 Cup: Height 14.5cm, Base width 8.0cm
- 3 Cup: Height 16cm, Base width 9.0cm
- 4 Cup: Height 18cm, Base width 9.5cm
- 6 Cup: Height 21.5cm, Base width 11.0cm
- 9 Cup: Height 25cm, Base width 11.5cm
- 12 Cup: Height 29.5cm, Base width 13.5cm
- 18 Cup: Height 32cm, Base width 13.5cm