Breville Oracle Touch™ Espresso Machine Review (2019 Update)

Features
Brewing
Price
Quick Review: A fully-automated espresso machine that lets you prepare quick coffee drinks, Breville Oracle Touch is the right product for busy coffee addicts. It comes with everything automatic from grinding, brewing and milk frothing. So, all you got to do is swipe and select, then tap and you’ll have your coffee.
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A fully-automated espresso machine that lets you prepare quick coffee drinks, Breville Oracle Touch is the right product for busy coffee addicts. It comes with everything automatic from grinding, brewing and milk frothing. So, all you got to do is swipe and select, then tap and you’ll have your coffee.

Despite the expensive price tag, many are still buying this fully-automatic Breville Oracle Touch. This is probably because it has achieved a perfect balance between café-quality coffee and convenience with everything operable at your fingerprints. But, is it really worth your money? Why don’t you discover it yourself as we take you to our in-depth review on this product?

What is Breville Oracle Touch?

The Breville Oracle Touch is a feature-packed fully automatic coffee machine that lets you prepare your drink in three simple steps — grind, brew, and milk. It’s touchscreen-operated and automatic, so all you need to do is swipe and select. Not only is using this espresso machine convenient, but it delivers great-tasting café-quality coffee.

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Breville 1 Oracle Touch Dual Boiler Touchscreen Automatic PID Espresso Machine-BES990BSS, 2.1, White
2 Reviews
Breville 1 Oracle Touch Dual Boiler Touchscreen Automatic PID Espresso Machine-BES990BSS, 2.1, White
  • Swipe. Select. Enjoy - with automation at every Stage, simply swipe and select for Espresso, long black, latté, flat White or cappuccino and enjoy café quality coffee at home. Touch screen operation for ease of use.
  • Dose amount - the integrated conical burr grinder automatically grinds, doses and tamps 22 grams, similar to the commercial machine in your favorite café.

This machine features automatic grinding, dosing and tamping, automatic milk texturing, precision temperature control and so on. In addition to that, the colored touchscreen display makes the operation easier. You can easily change the coffee strength, milk texture, and temperature to brew a perfect coffee you’ve always wanted.

Pros

  • Comes with a dual boiler that you can brew and steam simultaneously
  • Can choose between automatic and manual processes
  • Has built-in tamper, so it’s got consistent pressure and result every time
  • With automatic grinding, dosing, tamping and steaming
  • Has automatic purge on the group head and the steam wand
  • Very easy to clean and has reminders for the next cleaning cycle and descaling
  • Makes great coffee, seems like being brewed by a real barista

Cons

  • It’s very expensive
  • Since it automated, there’s a greater challenge when it breaks
  • The machine needs a bigger space in your kitchen countertop
  • Some users complained that water filter replacement is not available
  • There are minor software bugs, especially when adding customized coffee drinks
  • Warm-up time is much longer than other super-automatic espresso machines

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Design and Specifications

Out of the box, you can tell that the machine is big and really needs a “space” in your counter or table. It measures 14.5 inches wide, 17 inches deep including the portafilter and 17.75 inches high. It’s a bit heavy to move around since it weight is 35lbs.

A premium product like the Oracle Touch is made with stainless steel casing for durability and to easily wipe out spills and dirt. There’s a removable water tank at the back of the machine with 84oz water capacity and which can be filled at the top. It has an integrated water filter and backlit-level indicator.

It operates at 120V with power rating of 180W. It’s programmable with a touchscreen display that gives you setting for the pre-programmed coffee favorites, custom drinks, grind control, milk temperature and froth level, coffee strength, hot water on-demand option and so on. Has 58mm bottomless and non-pressurized portafilters.

breville-oracle touch review
credits: www.breville.com

Estimated warm-up for brew time is approximately 10 minutes, while the warm-up for steam time is around 25 minutes. With the stainless steel dual-boiler, you can simultaneously do brewing and milk texturing. It has an auto-on and auto-off functions with pre-infusion system to get an even extraction of your coffee grounds.

It features drip down swivel foot that is very useful to easily lift the machine for maneuver. This machine also includes a heated cup warming tray, dedicated hot water outlet that delivers just hot water for Americano and preheating your cups and descale access point. It has a capacitive and removable drip tray with Empty Me! Indicator when full and a tool storage tray to keep all the tools when not in use.

Features and Functionalities

Since the price is quite high, you’d expect more from it. But, Breville sees to it that you’ll be happy and excited each time you’ll use this machine. So, it is packed with more functions and features that you don’t expect to be present in a single espresso machine.

Among its amazing, yet very efficient features and functionalities are the following:

  • Built-in Conical Burr Grinder — With this integrated burr grinder you can easily get the perfect coffee grounds to achieve the natural and full flavor of your coffee. With just a press of a button, you can grind the same amount of coffee grounds every time.
  • Automatic and Hands-free Grind, Dose and Tamp — This is among the most wonderful features of this machine. The ability to enjoy hands-free dosing and tamping. As mentioned, the grinder gives the exact amount of coffee grounds every time (unless you change it.) So, there’s the automatic dosing. For the automatic tamping, it has a built-in tamper as well — a “tamping fan” that applies a certain pressure on top of the ground coffee, then, levels and smooths it. Hence, when you take out the portafilter, it’s all set for brewing — no spills, no mess and no need to do anything manually aside from inserting it into the group head for brewing.
  • Triple Heat System — First, it has a dedicated steam boiler which comes with the integrated Heat Exchange that helps achieve thermal stability. Second, there’s a dedicated espresso boiler with precise digital temperature control (PID) technology that delivers the optimal water temperature for brewing. Lastly, an embedded heated group head-PID controlled element that keeps the thermal stability during the whole process.
  • Automated Touchscreen Display — Simply swipe and select, then, enjoy — that simple! Select from the drink menu whether you like espresso, long black, flat white, latte or cappuccino. Then, you can actually change the coffee strength, milk texture, and milk temperature. You can save your changes and make it your own — you can name it and access it the next time you need your favorite coffee.
  • Hands-free Milk Texturing — Oracle’s steam wand automatically steam milk to the desired temperature and adjusts the amount of air so you can get just the perfect froth from silky smooth latte to creamy cappuccino. Not only that, it’ll remember your preferences so the next time you want a cup of coffee, you just need to select the drink you want and the machine will recall everything you set for that type of coffee. Lastly, after you’re done, it’ll start automatic purge to clean the steam wand with warm water after it’s back in its downward position.
  • Simultaneous Coffee and Steam — Now with this machine you can easily do brewing and milking simultaneously. It comes with two boilers; one is for espresso extraction while the other is for milk texturing. So, it’s very fast and easy.
  • Precise water temperature — The temperature of the water is kept to the optimum level to achieve a balanced-tasting espresso. Even a slight change of 2°F makes a difference in your coffee. So, Breville sees to it that it’ll never happen to Oracle Touch by having a digital temperature control (PID) technology onboard.
  • Optimal water pressure — High pressure during coffee extraction leads a bitter-flavored coffee. Hence, Oracle Touch is equipped with the Over Pressure Valve (OPV) that limits the maximum pressure during extraction. This feature is only available in some commercial espresso machine. Moreover, it has low-pressure pre-infusion that gives a gradual increase of the pressure so coffee grounds will gently expand for the best and even extraction.
  • Sufficient steam pressure — The steam wand will automatically texture your milk to your desired style and temperature. Hence, you can achieve café-grade silky milk-foam that will surely enhance the flavor of your coffee. So, a perfectly extracted coffee, plus your silky milk-foam will give you the best coffee you’ve never had before.

There are still a couple more amazing features of this machine. We can actually go on and on, but, since you can’t appreciate them if you don’t know how to use them, we’ll show you how to set it up and of course, to actually use it.

breville-oracle-touch-review
credits: www.breville.com

Setup and Operation

Out of the box, you can easily assemble the machine since it has a comprehensive instruction manual. The touchscreen display also gives you understandable instructions on your first setup. The instructions manual also have more tips on cleaning the parts to be used for the first time.

Press POWER button to turn the machine on. As mentioned, there’s a guide on the screen so simply follow it ‘til the very end. You can touch the ‘Guide’ button on the screen and again, it’ll give you step-by-step instructions on how to make your very first coffee.

On the screen, you got a lot of settings. Starting from the five pre-programmed café favorites, you can also add eight personalized and customized coffee drinks to the options. Once you choose the coffee drink you want, three simple steps will show — Grind, Brew, and Milk.

In the Grind, you’ll get the option to change the grind size. You can change it from the dial on the side of the machine (1 for the finest and 45 for the coarsest). Then, the corresponding grind size will be displayed on the screen under the Grind option.

Once you select the “Grind” it’ll automatically start to grind, then, dose and tamp. It’ll stop when the process is complete.

Next is the Brew. It has the option for the coffee strength and you can touch the button to scroll for more settings. For espresso, for example, you can choose between single shot, a double shot or timed custom extraction. For Americano, you can select between small, medium or large drink sizes.

Lastly, the Milk option that comes with two sets of numbers below it — one is for the milk temperature and the other is for the milk froth level. Milk frothing and texturing will stop once the set milk temperature is reached.

To add your own coffee recipe to the machine, you can simply tap the “Add New” from the menu screen. Then, start adjusting the parameters like coffee strength, milk temperature and froth level, name it and save it. Alternatively, you can also adjust the default parameter settings of the pre-programmed café drinks you can have the espresso or latte that you like.

There’s also a Hot Water option that lets you get hot water on demand. Hot water limit will go for 90 seconds. You need to prepare a much bigger container. Otherwise, you need to tap the Hot Water button to start and then tap again to stop.

Brewing Capacity and Process

Making espresso-based drinks, custom coffee drinks and milk frothing are made easier and seamless with the Oracle Touch. The process is simple! From the bean hopper, beans will fall to the grinder and dispense coffee grounds in the portafilter — already at the right dose and tamped. Then, you can insert the portafilter to the group head, brew and then, after doing the milk frothing.

While, it is very easy being said, the trick about fully-automatic espresso machines is that, you should determine the variables that make a great coffee quality, set every variable parameter and then, it’ll deliver consistent results each time you want to have your coffee. So, below, we give you a more detailed brewing process and what are the things you need to get familiar with when making your coffee with this machine.

Before you can go to grinding, you need to select the drink from five pre-programmed coffee drinks, plus your customized coffee drinks added through the steps detailed above. You need to heat your cup or glass to maintain the coffee’s optimal temperature. Likewise, it’s also necessary to preheat the portafilter and the filter basket for the same reason, because cold portafilter can reduce the extraction temperature that will also affect the quality of your drink.

Then, insert the bean hopper to position on top of the machine, then, lock-in in place. You can fill the hopper with fresh beans and let the machine do the rest. You can use either a single or double filter basket to be placed on the portafilter, before inserting it into the machine.

This espresso machine will grind just the right amount of coffee grounds, then, dispense it directly into the portafilter where there are automatic dosing and tamping. Hence, when you pull out the portafilter from the cradle, all you need to do is firmly inserted it into the group head. Before you place the portafilter, it’s important to purge the group head, allowing water to flow for around five seconds to remove any coffee residue.

breville oracle touch
credits: www.breville.com

Once you lock the portafilter in place (LOCK TIGHT position), touch the “Brew” button to get started with the coffee extraction. As mentioned, you can choose between single, double or custom where you can set the brew time. Press and hold the “Brew” button if you want to enter to manual extraction mode — you can tap to start brewing and tap the “Brew” button again to stop it.

For the milk frothing and texturing, you can do it automatically or manually. For automatic, simply fill the jug with fresh cold milk just below the spout position. Then, lift the steam wand and insert it into the milk jug. Lower the steam wand and ensure that it’s fully down. Simply tap the “Milk” button and it’ll automatically do the milk texturing until the milk reaches the temperature you want.

For manual, on the other hand, the process is almost the same, except that, the auto milk texturing and auto shut-off are disabled. To do this, lift the steam wand and tap and hold the “Milk” button for around two seconds to enter to manual mode. Once you’re there, simply tap the “Milk” button to start the manual milk frothing and tap it again when you feel it’s fine or if it reaches the desired temperature of your milk.

After it, get the milk jug and wipe the steam wand with a cloth. Then, lower the steam wand and push it down. It’ll start automatic purging that’ll run hot water through the wand so it’s already clean for the next use. Now, all you need to do is add the milk to your espresso in whatever fashion you want and voila, you get your favorite espresso-based coffee drink.

Cleaning and Maintenance

Cleaning this espresso machine doesn’t need much thought. Since you can do mess-less operations, all you need to do is wipe the casing with a clean cloth. It has an automatic purging in the group head and the steam wand to remove some residues, so all you need to think about are the descaling and the cleaning cycle.

For the cleaning cycle, it cleans the screen and the back flushes the group head. There’s a pop-up message on the touchscreen display to remind you that it’s time for the cleaning cycle. The descaling cycle, on the other hand, prevents the buildup of minerals and scale. Again, the machine is intelligent enough to let you know when is the next descaling cycle.

To check the best tricks and recommended cleaning and maintenance of this machine, refer the product manual.

Accessories and Add-ons

This machine actually comes with a lot of accessories and add-ons, so you can use it right away. It has a milk jug made of stainless steel. It has a two-cup and one-cup filter basket with water filter and water filter holder. You’ll be provided with cleaning disc with mini grinds bin, grinder burr brush, grind outlet brush and tamp removal magnet.

Aside from those cleaning tools for the grinder, it also has another cleaning tool set for the steam wand tip, steam wand cleaning powder and espresso cleaning tablets. Lastly, it has two Allen keys and a water hardness test strip to check your water source to ensure that’s safe to use.

You can store all the tools and cleaning materials in the tool storage tray located just beneath the drip tray. You can access it by pulling out the drip tray.

Who this product is for? / Should You Buy This?

The Breville Oracle Touch lets you make your favorite coffee in an instant — with less waiting time and less intervention. For busy people who only have a minute to spare to get their coffee, this is the best coffee maker for your kitchen or office. It operates with less mess, hence, it you can place it on one side of your table.

Not only does it eliminate the hassle and the long wait for a good cup of coffee, it delivers its promise of a great-tasting coffee. The kind of coffee you crave to have from an expert barista, you can do it from home. With simple swipe and select, it’ll serve you just the perfect cup of coffee you need.

In addition to that, it also has features and accessories not included in some super-automatic espresso machines. It has a lot of add-ons included so you can brew your first cup of coffee without the need to buy some more accessories.

However, this convenience and premium quality cup of coffee doesn’t come without a price. Frankly, this espresso machine is way expensive for beginners. However, if you think your money will be worth it, go on. After all, not only will you get a café-grade coffee, you can also improve your barista skills since it allows you to go manual.

Verdict

Having the Breville Oracle Touch at home is like having a magical coffee gene right next to you. It gives you the kind of coffee that you like, any time of the day. So, if you feel like you need to strengthen up and do more on a busy day, this espresso machine will surely come to the rescue.

Breville, as an Australian home appliance company has never failed to impress its consumers and coffee snobs. Whether you’re a busy man trying to keep up with your day with a cup of coffee or a real coffee addict, this fully-automatic espresso machine won’t fail you.

With all the features and functionalities you need to make coffee easier, yet, tastier, spending more than $2000 is worth it. Provided that, you’ll use it. Daily, if possible. Spending a lot of money for a single product will just be a waste if you’ll just let this great product sit in the corner.

So, only decide to buy this if you’ll use it. Don’t buy it if you don’t need coffee all the days of your life. We mean, it’s a premium product and it’s just too great to be placed in your kitchen countertop as a décor. It’s meant to be used and to be abused (in a good way, especially if you really want several cups a day!)

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