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Best 3 Group Commercial Espresso Machines


BEST 3 GROUP COMMERCIAL ESPRESSO MACHINES

Only the fastest espresso machines possible will do for the busiest coffee shops or businesses that sell espresso drinks.

In commercial settings where there are constantly back-to-back orders, a three-group commercial espresso machine can make all the difference. With three groups, baristas can make multiple drinks at a time, and you start to get enough room for more than one barista to work at the machine simultaneously.

In this guide, we’ll go over the best 3 group commercial espresso machines. We’ll cover fundamental espresso machine information and the highlights of each espresso machine on the list.

This is what you’ll learn:

  • Fundamental espresso machine information
  • What to consider to help you make your decision
  • Our picks for the best 3-group commercial espresso machines

ESPRESSO MACHINE FUNDAMENTALS

AUTOMATIC VS SEMIAUTOMATIC

Automatic and semiautomatic refer to what type an espresso machine is at its core. 

This will have the greatest effect on its daily use. It’s imperative to get a good understanding of the most common types so you’ll be able to make an informed decision.

You’ll ordinarily run into two types of espresso machines: automatic and semiautomatic.

Semiautomatic machines need their users to both begin and end the extraction process for them. Since the length of time you spend pulling the shot has a huge impact on its flavor, this means baristas need to learn the right amount of time for the brew cycle.

These are the advantages to using a semiautomatic machine:

  • Can customize drinks by pulling longer or shorter shots whenever necessary
  • Encourages baristas to hone their skills or talented baristas to demonstrate their skills
  • Generally cheaper than automatic machines

But, like with everything else, there are also disadvantages:

  • Takes more time to learn to use 
  • Can be slower than automatic machines
  • Drink quality depends on how experienced the barista is

Automatic machines only need the user to start the brew cycle, and then the machine will end it at the right time automatically. Predictably, this results in them being easier to learn for beginning baristas.

Here are the advantages of automatic machines:

  • Accessible to all skill levels
  • Increases multi-tasking, as employees don’t need to time the espresso
  • Quality of drinks is consistent, because the brew cycle duration is always the same

These are the disadvantages:

  • Typically costs more than a semiautomatic machine
  • Decreased flexibility to customize drinks

In the end, both automatic and semiautomatic machines can make great-tasting espresso. Which one is better is more a matter of which one meets your business’s individual requirements.

BOILER DESIGNS

No espresso machine would work without a good boiler system. In commercial espresso machines, you’ll usually see heat exchange or dual boilers being used.

Single-boiler systems also exist, but because they cannot steam and brew at the same time, they’re usually not sufficient for larger businesses.

Heat exchange boilers (also called HX boilers) make simultaneous steaming and brewing possible because they store steaming-temperature water away from brewing-temperature water, which is carried to the group head by a tube.

The advantages of a heat exchange system are the following:

  • Lower heat-up time, as only one boiler has to be heated
  • Energy-efficient during use because the machine has to work to keep only one boiler warm
  • Can be less expensive than dual boiler systems

These are the disadvantages of heat exchange boilers:

  • Often requires flushing of the group head before pulling a shot
  • May offer less steam power than dual boiler machines

Dual boiler machines use two boilers, with a boiler dedicated to brewing and another dedicated to steaming.

Here are the advantages of dual boiler systems:

  • Usually have more steam power
  • Usually comes with more temperature control options to alter the temperatures in the steaming or brewing boilers

The disadvantages are:

  • Typically pricier than heat exchange machines
  • May have a longer heat-up time after turning on

Either type of boiler has its own dedicated fan base and can make high-quality espresso.

WHAT TO CONSIDER BEFORE YOU CHOOSE AN ESPRESSO MACHINE

If you’re reading up on 3-group commercial espresso machines, then you already know you’re looking for something fast.

However, there are other factors you can consider that will help narrow down your choices.

One of the first things most people think about when it comes to making a purchase is the price, and that also applies here. You’ll need to define what kind of budget you have for your espresso machine.

The flipside is that you also shouldn’t fixate only on how much an espresso machine costs. Make sure you balance considering your budget with other features.

Is uniform quality every day, week, or month important to you? Automatic machines are great for consistency, because they take human errors in timing the brew cycles out of the equation.

At the same time, if you’re a specialty coffee shop that makes tons of highly customized drinks, you may need the adaptability that naturally comes in a semiautomatic machine.

The way your espresso machine looks is also important. Because it’s an investment, you’ll want one that fits in or boosts your business’s aesthetic.

Many espresso machines come in different colors or with stainless steel casing. As you look at them, imagine how it would look on your counter not only from your own point of view, but from your customer’s.

BEST 3-GROUP COMMERCIAL ESPRESSO MACHINES

VICTORIA ARDUINO BLACK EAGLE GRAVIMETRIC 

VICTORIA ARDUINO BLACK EAGLE GRAVIMETRIC

High-end coffee shops or businesses wanting to make espresso drinks with an unmatched degree of precision should take a look at the Victoria Arduino Black Eagle Gravimetric. 

What makes this machine so accurate is its gravimetric technology that knows when to end the brew cycle by the weight of the espresso’s volume rather than the time of the cycle. This keeps other miscellaneous factors like tamping and the group head’s condition from impacting your espresso.

  • Majesty Coffee Price: $30,105
  • Machine Type:  Automatic + manual dosing option
  • Boiler: Multiple boilers
  • Gravimetric Technology: The precise scale built into the Black Eagle Gravimetric weighs the shots to guarantee each one is the same every time.
  • Soft Infusion System: Protects your espresso from mistakes made in tamping.
  • Reverse Mirror: Watching espresso for any visible changes in quality is even easier with the backplate that doubles as a mirror.
  • Automated Cleaning: Employees will be able to close the shop even faster, as they won’t need to stand at the machine and clean its groups themselves – the Black Eagle can take care of that for them.

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NUOVA SIMONELLI AURELIA WAVE T3

NUOVA SIMONELLI AURELIA WAVE T3

The Nuova Simonelli Aurelia Wave T3 brings world championship-level espresso to businesses. 

The Wave T3 was designed to keep baristas comfortable during long hours. Its touchscreen display couldn’t be easier to navigate through, and its cool touch wands prevent workplace injuries by protecting users from burns.

On top of that, it has a beautiful curved accent on its side panel that makes it look like a crashing wave, bringing to mind luxurious beaches. 

  • Majesty Coffee Price: $20,500
  • Machine Type: Automatic + manual dosing options
  • Boiler: Multiple boilers
  • T3 System: This grants baristas unparalleled control over internal temperatures, as they can tweak the settings in each group head, as well as the primary and coffee group boilers.
  • Push-Pull Steam: Sore wrists after long days of constantly twisting a steam valve are in the past – the Wave’s steam can be controlled with just a light push or pull of a switch.
  • Automated Cleanings: Baristas can choose options that make the Wave clean its own groups, freeing them to focus on other matters at the end of the day.
  • Cool Touch Wands: Employees won’t dread cleaning a steam wand that always remains cool to the touch. Bonus: the cool external temperature of the steam wand keeps milk from sticking to it, so cleaning is even faster.
  • Milk Light: A light will come on automatically during steaming and shut off once the steaming is complete, allowing the barista to monitor the quality of the milk foam.

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VICTORIA ARDUINO WHITE EAGLE T3

VICTORIA ARDUINO WHITE EAGLE T3

A sibling of the Black Eagle, the Victoria Arduino White Eagle T3 brings many of the state-of-the-art technologies of the Black Eagle to you at a smaller price.

You’ll get the uniformity of an automatic machine and the customization of a semiautomatic machine combined. You’ll also get the richer flavors provided by an advanced soft infusion system and an intuitive LCD display you can use to tweak doses, boiler pressure, and pre-infusion settings.

  • Majesty Coffee Price: $18,900
  • Machine Type:  Automatic + manual dosing options
  • Boiler: Multiple boilers
  • T3 System: Make adjustments whenever you need to each group head, giving you the ability to draw different flavors from even the same blend of coffee.
  • Energy Efficiency: The White Eagle can be programmed to turn on or off at whichever times you’d like, aiding you in saving energy from running the machine unnecessarily.
  • Cool Touch Steam: Baristas won’t dread cleaning the steam wand, which remains cool to the touch even during heavy use.
  • Reverse Mirror: Keeping an eye on your espresso as it develops is crucial, and the reverse mirror above the drip tray makes watching over each shot easy.

 

NUOVA SIMONELLI AURELIA II SEMIAUTOMATIC

NUOVA SIMONELLI AURELIA II SEMIAUTOMATIC

The Nuova Simonelli Aurelia 2 Automatic is cutting-edge espresso machine used in the World Barista Championship.

As such, this is the perfect espresso machine for specialty and high-end business looking to provide world-class espresso-based drinks to customers. Its gigantic heat exchange boiler will have you blasting through drinks effortlessly and its famous Nuova Simonelli soft infusion system will take every shot to the next level.

  • Majesty Coffee Price: $9,315
  • Machine Type: Semiautomatic
  • Boiler: Heat exchange
  • Soft Infusion: A pressure-less stream of water is released into the espresso before extraction, settling the grounds so that the full pressure of extraction reaches every single coffee particle for an out-of-this-world flavor.
  • Manual Dosing Buttons: By giving complete control over the duration of the brew cycle to the barista, your skilled employees will be able to craft unique drinks for your most discerning customers.
  • Raised Group Heads: Having to transfer an espresso shot to another cup can disturb its golden crema. This issue is a thing of the past with the Aurelia 2’s taller group heads, which allow you to place even larger cups right under the group.
  • Surface LEDs:  Baristas won’t need to strain their eyes to watch the espresso by the light of the Aurelia 2’s built-in LEDs.

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LA PAVONI COMMERCIAL BAR-STAR 3V

LA PAVONI COMMERCIAL BAR-STAR 3V

The curved, aerodynamic look of the La Pavoni Commercial Bar-Star 3V simply screams speed, and this impression is completely true.

Its three groups and two steam wands allow for even more drinks to be made simultaneously, or even for two baristas to work on it at a time. The Bar-Star was born to race through lines of customers without needing a break or dropping quality.

  • Majesty Coffee Price: $7,800
  • Machine Type: Automatic
  • Boiler: Heat exchange
  • Massive Boiler Capacity:  An enormous 22-liter boiler means you won’t have to be worried about the Bar-Star running out of steam power even during your busiest hours.
  • Anti-Vacuum Valve: Untimely steam wand clogs won’t interrupt your workflow – the anti-vacuum valves on the steam wands prevent liquid from backing up into them.
  • Double Scale Gauge: Monitor both your pump and boiler pressure so you’ll know as soon as the machine is ready to steam or brew.
  • Four-Position Power Switch: If you have some downtime, the power switch can be put into energy-efficient positions that lower energy consumption by 33%.

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★ Customer Reviews ★

MajestyCoffee Verified Customer Testomonials

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Pleased w purchase

Love my new bottomless portafilter! Recommend it to others!!

Quick and consistent

This addition to our espresso bar has been great. It is quick, consistent and has eliminated almost all of our arm and shoulder strain. We will be purchasing this for all our future setups.

Great grinder. Great service thank you!

Great Grinder

This grinder is very quiet and very quick. The grind is great and it's much neater than my previous grinder that made a mess every time I used it. Its expensive and kind of large, but makes a great espresso with lots of crema.