Who says you need counter space for serious coffee? Rocket's newest machine brings their outstanding handcrafted quality to the urban dweller with the aptly named Appartamento Espresso Machine. Featuring Rocket's tried-and-true heat exchange boiler and E61 group head pairing, you'll be pulling shots and pouring lattes in polished style. Classic features like mechanical pre-infusion, a heated group head and articulated steam and hot water wands make it a true prosumer device. Rocket's new pint-size compatriot adds a flash of bold design inspiration with circular side-panel inserts and engraved steam and hot water spouts.
Features and Functionality of the Rocket Espresso Appartamento Espresso Machine
Heat Exchange Boiler - A 1.8-liter heat exchange steam boiler allows you to brew espresso and froth milk at the same time.
Heated Group Head - A small flow of water off the boiler keeps your machine's group head warm for more consistent shot temps.
Small Footprint - The reduced dimensions of the Appartamento suit it for small counters and space-restricted kitchens.
Manual Control - Learn to brew all on your own with mechanical steam and brew controls.
Rocket Design - A flashy update to Rocket's (already showstopping) design, the Appartamento will draw stares from everyone who enters your kitchen.
Quite a Looker - The combo of mirrored steel and fun side-panel cutouts give the Appartamento a distinctly vintage appearance.
Heated Brew Head - Consistently hot shots in a machine this size? Yes, please.
So Simple - The classic Rocket Espresso knobs, levers and switches are easy to use and satisfyingly tactile.
Portafilters - The Appartamento comes with spouted portafilters for both single and double shot use cases.
Loud Pump - The vibratory pump is just as loud as on its larger brethren. We doubt apartment neighbors will appreciate the early morning wall shaking.
Plastic Rack - We wish the cup warmer rack was steel instead of plastic.
How Does it Compare?
The successor to the Cellini Classic, the Appartamento is thinner and flashier with its contrast side panels and engraved piping. Unlike the slightly pricier Premium Plus, the Appartamento lacks a PID.
Tips and Tricks
The Appartamento's uninsulated boiler heats up the whole machine, especially after extended use. If you are used to bracing the side of the machine when removing your portafilter, the lower half of the machine is much cooler than the top.
What is the real world "downsides" of not having a PID on this machine?
I would be the only one using it, I seldom steam milk/soy and I make 1-2 per day. I have a PID on my Crossland CC1 but am looking to a Rocket some time later this year.
Just wondering about the lack of PID and trying to figure out if my use case, and the volume I would make of espresso, would not affect me much or at all?
A shopper on May 16, 2016
Best Answer:Because this is a heat exchanger machine a PID is not really necessary. All that is required is adequate warm up time (about 20 to 30 minutes) and you will want to do a brief flush through the brew head just prior to placing your portafilter and pulling your shot. I hope that helps. Victor
What is the depth of the base of the Rocket Appartamento? In other words does the 17 inch figure include the handle on the portafilter or is that the depth of the base to the front of the drop tray? If it includes the portafilter, what is the depth to the front of the drop tray?
Does the machine really require a 20-30 min warm up time?
A shopper on May 28, 2016
Best Answer:i just pulled a shot after a 20 minute warm-up and it was enough time. I usually turn it on first thing when I wake up for morning espresso. In the evening, I turn it on before dinner and it is all warmed up and ready to go after my meal.
Best Answer:I know that many of our customers will turn on their machines at night and turn them off when they leave for work in the morning! We haven't (yet, thanks for the idea!) done any long term testing with leaving a machine on for long periods of time.
Best Answer:Fit and finish on the Appartamento is better throughout than on the Oscar II. For me, it's the little things like excess plastic, exposed screw holes, and mixed finishes that detract from the Oscar II.
That said, they are very different machines, and have some key differences that should be considered: The Oscar II is a time-based automatic machine, the Appartamento is a classic semi-automatic. Steam pressure is higher on the Oscar II, and uses a featherable steam lever instead of the Appartamento's knob. The steam wand on the Appartamento is insulated (less scalded milk to clean up), the Oscar's wand is not. Drip tray is bigger on the Oscar II, but plastic and wire instead of stainless steel. The Oscar II has more cup clearance. The Appartamento has a dedicated hot water wand. The Appartamento comes with more accessories (2x portafilters, blind basket, tamper) and since it has an E61 group, can accept common aftermarket accessories like a brewhead thermometer, bottomless and triple portafilters etc.
Best Answer:The V2 has a rotary, rather than a vibratory pump, which makes it quieter and allows it to be connected directly to the water line for continuous automatic filling, If you do this, there is no need to ever refill the tank. It's also better insulated, has a pre-infusion system that brings the pressure up in two stages for improved brewing, and has an additional pressure gauge that tells you when the boiler is fully up to temperature.
There's a couple of differences! Think of the Cellini Evoluzione as the Appartamento with:
+ Quieter rotary pump + Plumbable + Brew pressure gauge on the left + Includes a stainless steel tamper But, it is a little larger than the Appartamento and doesn't have the colored side-panel inserts.
Purchased the V2 for its features and have been very satisfied with the machine. Exceeded all my expectations, and it looks great on the counter. Rotary pump is very quiet, and a welcome change from the vibration pump machine owned before.
Don't know too much about the Apartamento, but I believe that the dimensions are more compact.
Suffering from serious chrome-love with the Appartamento. But a question about grind: We buy our favorite, bricks of Lavazza Rossi, would that work OK in this machine?
A shopper on Nov 28, 2016
Best Answer:I wouldn't recommend using pre ground coffee with a machine like this - it's impossible to know if the extraction time will be correct. Expect to spend at least $300 or more on a nice grinder - some say that a nice grinder is more important than the machine (check out the $1k Rocket grinder).
Let's compare it to buying a home stereo. It would be stupid to buy really nice speakers and then hook a tape deck into it. Buying freshly roasted coffee with a nice grinder is essential to getting the most out of this machine.
Search "How To: Dialing in a Coffee Grinder" on youtube for a Seattle Coffee Gear video on how grinding beans for espresso works.
If you aren't ready to take the plunge and invest around 2k for a machine, then I would recommend an aeropress with freshly ground coffee.
I can't testify to the pre-ground Lavazza Rossa, but have been using Lavazza super-crema, which I grind to serving, and very happy with the results. My understanding is that if you splurge on this kind of machine, you would be best off to also invest in a good grinder to go along, and always grind fresh.
I don't think it would work as well as a dialed in grind. A machine with a pressurized portafilter would work better with your favorite coffee. I'm always tweaking the grind to get a good shot on my Appartamento. A small change in the grind size makes a big difference.
The Appartamento is 10.5 inches wide, 14.5 inches high and 17 inches deep. With the portafilter in, the depth is 22.5 inches, and you'll need some extra space to get to the water tank, which pulls out from the top of the machine. I'd also recommend adding a couple inches of free space to either side of the machine to make sure you have room to operate the steam and hot water wands.
Hi which would you buy the Giotto plus PID or the Appartamento? I love the look the the appartamento better, but really its about the machine. Will the PID on the Giottto really make a difference in getting the temp right comparatively?
Rocket Espresso Appartamento Espresso Machine - Custom Black
Best Answer:I think it is entirely up to your espresso work flow! For light day-to-day home use you likely won't see much of a difference between the two machines.
Where the PID, in my opinion, truly shines is if you like to try different coffees often and want the ability to moderate boiler temperature (and thus brew temperature) to accommodate different roast types, blends or single origin beans.
It's also worth it to point out that with the Premium Plus you also get a gauge for brew pressure, whereas the Appartamento only has a boiler pressure gauge.
I find that one secret to perfect espresso is removing as many variables as possible. That is the effect of having PID. Since temp concerns are removed, that reduces it to grind and tamp for me.
If you like the looks of the Aparmento, then you might consider the Cellini Premium Plus w/PID instead of the Giotto. The two reasons to go with the Apartmento for me would be space and price. You will like the PID.
The Appartamento is indeed a great looking machine. I have not missed having temperature adjustment, and I wouldn't have the knowledge to make adjustments. If you look at some of the previous questions, some of the experts are saying that a PID is not necessary on a heat exchanger machine. This set my mind on ease when choosing this machine versus the Giotto.
Best Answer:The Appartamento only has one pressure gauge. It is for the boiler, and goes up to 1 bar when the temperature is sufficient to make espresso. There is no pump pressure gauge to determine if the pressure is 9 bars for proper brewing. I think the pump pressure is set at the factory.
What brand of coffee grinder would be best to get for Rocket appartamento espresso machine? Aside from the rocket coffee grinders since they are very expensive.
A shopper on Oct 24, 2016
Best Answer:Many of our customers pair their Rocket with a Eureka Mignon Grinder! It has a small footprint, timed dosing, great espresso distribution, stepless bottom burr adjust (great for cleaning), and the polished version matches the case of a Rocket fantastically.
Please, what are the actual dimensions of the apartmento by rocket? I have the Classico, and by luck it fits with 1 inch to spare in my kitchen! All by fortuitous chance. I'd like to know the actual size differences. Thanks!
A shopper on Aug 11, 2016
Measurements on the Appartamento product page are off of a real machine! Which dimensions are you looking for specifically? I'd be more than happy to confirm any measurement you need.
Is there a way to insulate the boiler ourselves to reduce noise?
A shopper on Jan 9, 2017
Best Answer:The boiler itself doesn't make much, if any noise. What you're hearing is the vibratory pump, which is already pretty insulated by the steel case. There really isn't much in the way you can do about the sound of a vibe pump, which is pretty standard across most espresso machines. If you're worried about noise, I'd recommend a roatary pump driven machine like the R58.
How hot do the side of the machine get? Gail mentioned in a vid that the sides get hot and to be careful.
A shopper on Dec 17, 2016
Best Answer:The sides of the Appartamento get warm, (maybe ~100 degrees) but definitely not hot enough to burn you. You will want to be careful around the group head though, as the E61 is heated from the steam boiler and definitely gets hot enough to burn.
Best Answer:Yep! The E61 brewhead can be identified by the 'flying saucer' shape at the front of the machine. It's designed to siphon hot water from the boiler to maintain consistent heat—and helps you pull a tastier shot!
Best Answer:Rocket's heat exchanger espresso machines are calibrated at the factory by measuring water temperature at the brewhead. Each pressure stat will be set a little differently machine-to-machine for proper brewing temp. We've found that the Appartamento tends to calibrate a little lower on the spectrum, ~0.9 bars, than other machines.
We generally recommend waiting ~30 minutes for a machine to come to temp, but you're likely pretty much ready to go at the 20-minute mark after a flush.
Received my Appartamento last week and love it.Review by My New Toy
Since 1990, I have loved espresso drinks. People would laugh, but I started with a Krups espresso/coffee machine. I moved onto a Saeco machine which wore out. I have been going to the Portland store for the last few years.
When the Appartamento was released via the web, I feel in love.
This machine does everyone one would want. I have it paired with a Eureka Mignon grinder.
I now just need to practice my milk frothing in order to create latte art in my drinks.
One thing I would say, make sure you have the room for this machine in your kitchen. It is big even though it has a small footprint. (Posted on 9/27/2016)
Buy it!Review by Hoppity Hop Espresso
The Rocket Espresso Appartamento is my first espresso machine. I've been using this machine for about a week now, and I love it so far. I think it's the best looking machine in Rocket's lineup. I had some reservations about buying a machine without a PID or insulated boiler, but I'm glad I bought this machine since it makes great espresso, especially with the Velton's Bonsai Blend that SCG included with my order. For light home use, I don't think you can find a better HX machine for the price.
Expect for your first few shots to be horrible until you get the grind right. I'm using a Compak K3 grinder with this machine, and I had to make several adjustments before I started pulling good tasting shots. As SCG pointed out, this machine is loud, which is why I gave it four stars instead of five for quality. It sounds like a small air compressor, so expect this when you turn on the machine for the first time while the boiler fills with water. However, after the boiler fills up completely, it only makes noise for a couple seconds when you first turn it on and when you are pulling shots. Other than that, everything else is great. This machine has plenty of steam power too. It can easily froth a pitcher of milk while you are pulling a shot, but whether or not you can do that with great results takes practice. Frothing milk for latte art is difficult until you master it. I don't blame the machine for this: You just have to practice getting the microfoam just right. I expect this will take me a few more months to perfect. (Posted on 7/31/2016)
Looks wonderfulReview by JCS
Rocket upped their game with this one. My only suggestion for improvement is to add 25 cents worth of insulation to the boiler to keep the machine at a more desirable temperature. Two thumbs up overall. (Posted on 6/14/2016)
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