Bialetti 6799 Moka Express 3-Cup Stovetop Percolator

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Pros: Inexpensive, fast! Good yield
Cons: Not good if you have a short attention span!
Consuming espresso and cappuccino abroad and returning to American coffee is a harsh reality. Seriously. Twice-daily doses of inexpensive cappuccinos at Italian 'bars' will spoil even the most coffee-addled consumer. I simply couldn't handle regular coffee. Even black. Old. Strong. None of it hit the same flavor profile of Italian espresso drinks.

Without the resources to drop several hundred dollars on a quality espresso maker with enough power to create steam to froth the milk, I went down the easy road. Alas, the Bialetti Moka Express. It is a stovetop espresso maker. Water in the bottom. Fine ground espresso in the funnel-shaped filter. Screw on the top. Done. Place the aluminum 'cooker' on the stove and the water pushes through the grounds to the receptacle at the top. Pour. Just that easy. Time invested: maybe 2 minutes, seriously. Think "1970's percolator.... upside down."

I heat milk and pour into a mug, espresso over the top. Not quite cappuccino, but it is close, sans milk mustache.

The Moka Express is really hassle-free to use, portable, simple to clean and just the same to maintain. One word of caution: Do not set the Moka Express on the stove and leave. The time it takes to push the water through the grounds is remarkably fast. You can actually scorch the espresso in the blink of an eye. Do I want an electric espresso maker with cool milk-steaming wand? Yes. Will the Bialetti Express work in place of the more pricey counter-top unit? Has been so far!
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