Arnt Gulbrandsen
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2009-02-12

Quickmill 3035 Pegaso

The Quickmill 3035 Pegaso, also called Quickmill 03035 or Quick Mill 3035 (or other combinations of the same units) is an espresso machine with built-in coffee grinder and an unusual heating mechanism.

Compared to similarly priced machines, the 3035 heats up quickly and is physically small, partly because of its integrated grinder.

Compared to its siblings 835 and 2835, it has a manometer (nice to have while one learns to make espresso), looks more impressive, and costs more.

Compared to cheap machines, it has a very much better build quality, etc.

We have one and I make a cup or two most days. Here's what I think about the machine.

Mechanism. It's solid and good. The quick heater is particularly pleasing, since I can turn it on when I need it, the machine is ready to brew as soon as I've found cups, etc. and ground the coffee. Because the machine is off most of the time, it doesn't suffer from clogged pipes.

Grinder. Many tests and reviews criticise the 3035 for putting the roasted beans close to the heating element. It hasn't been a problem in practice: The 3035 heats up in a minute and I turn the machine on when I want to make espresso, so the beans are only exposed to heat for a few minutes per day.

However, the grinder could be better. It has 24 settings, fewer than half of which are actually usable for espresso. The grinder's settings aren't labelled usefully.

The manual (PDF) isn't much to be excited about. It doesn't even suggest which grinder settings you might want to start with (1-3), or which of the removable parts are dishwasher-safe (all the removables survive my dishwasher). I sent Quickmill mail and got a good reply after a couple of days.

Espresso quality is the most important thing. With a bit of practice, the 3035 can be coaxed to make considerably better espresso than most bars serve. It can also make sludge if you get it wrong. Care is needed.

The machine has a couple of minor deficiencies. It's too difficult to put the espresso cup(s) in the right spot(s); the pattern of holes on which the cups stand could be improved to indicate the ideal spot. The foam-making arm could be redesigned so it would be easier to clean. (Update:) The channel from the grinder is too wide/long, so the coffee is stored unnecessarily between being ground and used.

The size specified is wrong. The 35cm stated height does not include the guard rail or bean container, and the machine has to be 3.5cm away from the wall, so it occupies a depth of 30.5cm on the bench.

Update (December 2012): The machine is now four years old, give or take a week, and the symbols on the buttons have been worn away from use. I'm still happy with the machine, and in particular I like that it heats up quickly. Plan your breaks in advance is not my motto.