The Casabrews 5700Pro is an espresso machine that features an automatic, built-in grinder and steam wand, so you can use your favorite beans to make coffeehouse-style drinks at home. It’s relatively easy to use – and even those new to espresso machines will be able to learn quickly – although making a shot is a bit more involved than it would be with a pod machine or a basic coffee maker. But the rich, flavorful results are worth the effort. Just be prepared for some trial and error with the settings to achieve your perfect shot of espresso.
Casabrews was founded in 2020 and deals exclusively in coffee machines, making sleek yet functional options for a variety of budgets. The brand has gained some notoriety on TikTok, and having used the 5700Pro for the past few weeks, I can see why it’s received some social media love – especially when you consider its low price. You’ll also find other budget-friendly alternatives in the Casabrews range, which drop features such as the built-in grinder or the LCD panel, for example, to come in at a more competitive price.
If you’re looking for a commercial espresso machine experience, but without having to part with a fortune, the Casabrews 5700Pro is a sleek, compact alternative. The grinder offers 15 different grind sizes, and you can select the time for which the grinder distributes grinds into the portafilter for a more hands-off experience. Admittedly, the LCD and control panel are slightly confusing to use at first, but most should become familiar following a few uses. A weighty distributor and tamper are included, too, making the ground coffee ready to brew.
When brewing an espresso, the machine heats up quickly and is ready to pull shots in about one minute. It takes some strength to slot the portafilter into the brew head, but once done, it’s ready to brew. The LCD panel displays the brew time and pressure, and if you fail to pull perfect results with your first shot, making adjustments is simple. Note, however, that the whole brewing process can be noisy, and I’ve experienced issues with vibrations moving my espresso cup – so be prepared.
A steam wand is on hand to heat and foam milk in under 30 seconds, while the same wand can deliver hot water – with a little too much water pressure, in my opinion – for americanos or teas.
Overall, if you love espresso or espresso-based drinks, the Casabrews 5700Pro is one of the best espresso machines available, especially when you consider the price and features. Experts and novices alike will appreciate its capabilities.
Casabrews 5700Pro review: price and availability
- List price: $899.99
- Only available in the US
You can purchase the Casabrews 5700Pro direct from the Casabrews website; it’s currently on sale for $459.99. You can also pick it up from third-party retailers such as Amazon and Home Depot, but the best deals are on the Casabrews website.
There’s no doubt that with a list price of $899.99, the 5700Pro espresso machine is expensive. With features such as a built-in grinder and steam wand, it has plenty going for it; but models such as Breville’s Barista Express Impress offer the same features for less. That said, I’ve yet to see the Casabrews 5700Pro selling at its list price, so if you manage to pick it up for $500 or less, it’s a great deal.
The 5700Pro is the top-of-the-line model in Casabrews’ range, so if you’re looking to spend less then there are several alternatives available. The 3700 Gense costs around $150 and comes with a steam wand and pressure gauge, but no built-in grinder, while the 5700 Gense retails for slightly less than the 5700Pro, yet comes with almost all the same features; there’s no LCD screen, though.
Casabrews 5700Pro: specifications
|Size:||12.8 x 11.2 x 16.5 inches (w/ bean hopper)a|
|Water tank capacity:||91oz|
|Number of filters:||2, single/double|
|Pump pressure:||20 bar|
|Average noise level when brewing: 65dB Average noise level when frothing milk:||75dB|
Casabrews 5700Pro review: design and features
- Sleek, durable build with stainless steel finishes
- Straight-forward, relatively simple setup
- LCD and controls are difficult to navigate
The Casabrews 5700Pro arrives in a large, pretty bulky box. Inside, you’ll find a number of accessories, which could prove overwhelming for those who haven’t used an espresso machine before and remain unaware of the purpose of these different components. Luckily, an instruction manual and a shorter-length operation guide are on hand to enlighten you.
Setting up the Casabrews 5700Pro is more straightforward than it might first appear. Most of the machine is already put together, including the grinder – a spare is provided, in case you damage the original. The only parts you need to attach are the 0.4-gallon bean hopper, the 91oz water reservoir, and the filter holder bracket – which proved the trickiest. Nevertheless, it took about 10 minutes to get the machine set up for first use, which included washing and drying many of the parts before assembly.
Before the first use, you’re supposed to run through a brew cycle, to flush out the machine. Likewise, with the steam wand. I flushed the machine many more times than the one time recommended, however, since the water had a strange fishy smell. After several run-throughs, the smell dissipated.
The machine itself is quite heavy, weighing a whisker over 20 lbs, so it’s not something you’ll want to be moving around a lot. Size-wise, it’s on par with other espresso machines offering similar functionality, at 12.8 x 11.2 x 16.5 inches with the bean hopper on top. It takes up a good deal of space on my counter, and only just fits under my cabinets, making it better for those with more spacious kitchens.
The Casabrews 5700Pro’s finish is almost exclusively stainless steel, with its sleek, polished look matching many of the other appliances in my kitchen. Given its price, I expect its build to stand up to a good deal of use, and so far, I have no complaints in this regard. It’s easy to clean, too. The drip tray and plate that slot into the bottom of the machine offer a similarly sturdy feel, and the tray features a tab that will pop up when it needs to be emptied; it holds a good deal of water, requiring me to empty it only once during a week of use. It’s simple to take out and put back in.
The plastic water reservoir slots into the back of the machine, which makes it slightly challenging to get to when it needs to be filled; Casabrews recommends filling it with “fresh, cold tap water before each use.” I’m lazy, adding water only when the level went below the minimum fill line on most days. I didn’t notice any difference between “fresh” versus “days old” water, but it could play into the longevity of the machine. There doesn’t appear to be any type of filter at the bottom of the tank, which is disappointing. It means that calcium buildup as a result of hard water could lead to issues down the road.
As mentioned, this machine comes with a grinder preinstalled. You can select a grind size of between 1-15, simply by turning the notch. Be sure to never get the grinder wet; Casabrews puts a stunning amount of warnings about this. For cleaning, the grinder can be removed and replaced easily, with the machine’s LCD panel indicating if it isn’t properly in place.
Speaking of the LCD panel, the Casabrews 5700Pro’s generously sized screen displays such information as grind time for filling the portafilter, time of extraction, pressure, and more. Admittedly, I found this screen difficult to master. There are several well-labeled controls sitting below the panel, such as a dose dial and menu button, plus a Single and Double espresso button. And while it is possible to adjust the temperature of the espresso shot and the volume, the process for doing so is a bit convoluted and super confusing. I kept most of the settings as is, other than adjusting the grind time for filling the portafilter.
The final attachments include the steam wand and a knob. The knob is more straightforward to use; you simply turn to choose the available settings – steam ready, steam, off, or hot water. The wand moves fairly easily while still feeling securely attached to the main body of the machine. However, I do wish that there was a separate water dispenser rather than having to rely on the wand, which delivers water with a bit too much pressure.
As for the other accessories you’re likely to use daily, there’s a portafilter offering two filter sizes – single and double – that are easy to pop in and out. There’s also a distributor, which helps spread the coffee grounds evenly, and a tamper to apply pressure, while a small rubber mat is included to support the portafilter as you perform these tasks. I just wish there was somewhere to store these accessories on the machine so they don’t get lost.
Also included are a milk jug for steaming, a coffee spoon, cleaning utensils, and a decorating pen – all of which I’ve rarely used, if at all.
Casabrews 5700Pro: performance
- Produces flavorful espresso with a thick, golden crema
- Noisy, strong vibrations in use
- Steam wand heats milk fast with long-lasting foam
The Casabrews 5700Pro is fairly easy to use. However, do keep in mind that if you haven’t used an espresso machine before, there’s a bit of a learning curve. An instruction sticker on the machine itself, as well as a more in-depth guide of how to make espresso, can be found in the manual that accompanies the machine. In reality, though, achieving your perfect shot of espresso involves a lot of trial and error, especially when it comes to finding the best grind size for your brews.
Adjusting the grind size is easy enough, with Casabrews recommending you start at setting 8, turning the grinder up or down to make it coarser or finer, depending on the bar pressure and brew results. This is a 20-bar pressure machine, although you’ll never want your espresso to hit that level. The ideal number is around 9. My first few espressos were above that, and while they still tasted rich and bold, the crema was lacking.
With my beans of choice, I settled on a sweet spot of a grind size of 6.5 and an 11-second timer for the grinder using the single shot filter. It’s possible to engage the grinder and stop it automatically by setting the time on the LCD using the Dose dial. Otherwise, if you find the filter is getting too full, you can push the portafilter back in to stop grinding. It’s possible to set different timers for the single or double filters, which is extra handy.
The espresso brewed with these settings resulted in a shot with a nice, bold flavor, a tiny hint of acidity and some sweetness – something that I welcome. There was beautiful, thick golden crema on top that reformed when cut with a spoon. I added a teaspoon of sugar to the top of the crema to see how it held up; it rested on top for a few seconds before dropping to the bottom – all signs of good espresso.
The time to get these results wasn’t very long. It took about 1 minute for the machine to preheat, time I used to ground the beans. Next, it’s recommended that you use the distributor, to spread the grounds evenly in the portafilter. This isn’t a tool I’ve seen included with other espresso machines I’ve used, but it works surprisingly well. Once you’ve applied a bit of pressure to the beans using the solid, metal tamper, you’re good to slot the portafilter into the brew head. Note that this does take a bit of muscle. It took one hand to hold onto the machine while the other locked the filter into position. Then it was simply a matter of placing a cup under the machine and pressing the “single” shot button.
Be aware that this machine gets quite noisy, hitting 65dB in use. There’s also a good deal of vibration; I found the espresso cup I was using started to move around a fair bit, leaving splashes all around the outer rim of the cup. The LCD times the espresso as it brews and lets you know the pressure bars. After 22 seconds, hitting the perfect nine bars, I had about 30ml of espresso at a temperature of 135°F. While it isn’t possible to brew another shot immediately after, the machine will be good to go again inside a minute or so.
Getting the portafilter out of the machine was as difficult as getting it in, and neither does the Casabrew machine come with a tool to easily remove the used grinds. I used a spoon, or hit the portafilter hard against my garbage can to get the puck out. While I never had an issue with the filter falling out as I did this, the process did sometimes get a little messy. I wish there was a better solution. Nevertheless, at least the actual espresso results were successful and tasty.
If you’re looking to double the amount of espresso you brew, simply swap out the single filter for the double. As I mentioned, you can save the grind time of the double dose as well, so about 18 seconds procured the ideal amount of grounds for the brew. Having followed the same steps and selecting the “double” shot button, it took the machine 27 seconds to pour an espresso with similar attributes to the first. Only this time, I had 60ml of espresso to sip on or use in specialty drinks. Note that the 5700Pro will also evenly distribute the espresso into two separate vessels, if you want to make separate drinks.
The Casabrews 5700Pro comes with both a steam wand that was a joy to use and an easy-to-turn dial on the side of the machine. To get frothing, simply move the dial to the steam-ready notch until the indicator light is steady, which takes about 20 seconds. Then you steam the milk using a metal steam jug and steam wand. I heated 2% milk until it was too hot to touch the jug, about 52 seconds. This process is loud, hitting 75-80dB with the pump thumping every couple of seconds. However, this isn’t unusual with espresso machines in this price category.
The resulting steamed milk had a temperature of 145°F and a good layer of thick, foamy bubbles on top. Five minutes later, the foam was still intact and held its shape following a dusting of cinnamon powder on top, making it perfect for cappuccinos and lattes. I tested Oatly oat milk as well with similar results, though it was slightly less foamy than the 2% milk. It’s important to note that you can’t brew espresso at the same time, and there’s a slight delay before you can brew a fresh shot of espresso after steaming. I never found this to be an inconvenience, though.
When adding the espresso, steamed milk, and foam in a ⅓ ratio, I made cappuccino on par with a good deal of coffee shops I frequent. The coffee taste still cut through the milk, making a tasty, warm beverage to enjoy. My latte tasted similar, although I preferred the extra foamy cappuccino I created.
The Casabrews also delivers hot water for making an americano or tea through the steam wand. The water runs out with a good deal of pressure, annihilating any of the crema on the espresso – which I found disappointing, since an americano is my go-to everyday drink. A separate spout that didn’t push water out so fast, such as that included in the Breville Barista Express Impress would have been better.
You get a cup full of hot water each time you turn the knob, or turn it back to “off” to stop the water flow. It takes about 45 seconds to get a cup full of water around 160°F – while not an ideal temperature for tea, it will work when you’re in a pinch.
There are a few other settings you can play around with on the Casabrews, although I didn’t find them particularly helpful. For example, you can make the espresso shot with warmer or colder water, but not set an actual temperature. Scrolling to the setting took a while, and in testing, it only made the temperature different by 10°F – not enough to make a noticeable difference, in my opinion. According to the instruction manual, you’re also able to set the volume of the espresso shots, with the single shot being 20-60ml and double from 60-120ml. I’ve yet to figure out how to do this, however.
As far as maintenance goes, The Casabrews 5700Pro is on a par with similar espresso machines. There are two cleaning modes: flush and descale. You can access both using the same process as changing the water temperature. It’s recommended you flush the machine through every week, which simply involves a water clean that takes one minute and minimal effort on your part. Descaling is a similar process, but you add a descaling agent to the water – vinegar is my favorite affordable option.
The only other component that may occasionally need maintenance is the grinder, and the Casabrews 5700Pro will alert you when it’s time to do so via the LCD. There is a cleaning brush to help with the process, and the manual provides very clear instructions for all the cleaning processes.
Should I buy the Casabrews 5700Pro?
|Value||Offers great performance and features at the sale price.||4/5|
|Design||A sleek, durable build with a stainless steel finish, a built-in grinder, a steam wand, but a slightly confusing control panel.||4.5/5|
|Performance||Makes full-bodied espresso with a thick, golden crema. The steam wand heats milk fast with a great foam consistency, but the machine is noisy in use.||4.5/5|
Buy it if…
Don’t buy it if…
|Header Cell – Column 0||Breville Barista Express Impress||Seattle Coffee Gear Diletta Bello||De’Longhi Dinamica Plus|
|Water tank||67oz/ 2 liters||63oz/ 1.8 liters||1.8 liters|
|Dimensions||12.9 x 14.9 x 16.14 inches / 33 x 38 x 41cm||11 x 17.75 x 14.5 inches||13.7 x 9.3 x 16.9 inches / 34.8 x 23.6 x 42.9cm|
If you’re not sure about the Casabrews 5700 Pro, here are a couple of other options to consider…
How I tested the Casabrews 5700Pro
- Tested for three weeks
- Used all settings on the machine
I tested the machine for three weeks, with several different varieties of coffee beans to compare performance. I used both the single and double filters on the portafilter, and I made several cappuccinos and lattes, testing the abilities of the steam wand.
The Casabrews 5700Pro took the place of my usual Breville Barista Express. It proved to be a worthy replacement for that machine.
This post originally appeared on TechToday.