Last Updated on September 15, 2021 by John Moretti
It would be remiss of me or anyone who claims to like stovetop coffee makers, aka Moka pots, to not have an original Italian-made version of the coffee-making ingenuity, as scientists called it in a recent study.
Even more importantly, a Bialetti, which reigns supreme in representing the passion of the Italians when it comes to making the perfect brew, is a must-have. It’s a passion I share.
If you’re new to the world of Moka pots, which is the name I’ll use interchangeably, then it’s a device that prepares your coffee under pressure, similar to the espresso, but far less pressure, and leaves you with an intense cup of Joe.
Now, choosing the best Italian made is not easy, and I had to get the help of some baristas, friends, and family members and, of course, in-depth research to give you detailed information on the right size, style, make, and components when buying a stovetop coffee maker that is long-lasting.
- Top Pick: Bialetti Elegance Venus
- Budget pick: Top Moka Maker
- Bialetti Express
- Grosche Milano
- Alessi Espresso Maker
Top Pick: Bialetti Elegance Venus
I recommend Bialetti for a few reasons. It’s high-quality, variety of sizes and even fun colors. According to the experts, one of the benefits of a Bialetti is the octagonal shape, which allows the heat to distribute evenly.
It makes for a more consistent cup of coffee. Other than the small “cup” portions, which are more like espresso cups and not the typical cup size, I consider it as close to flawless as a stovetop coffee maker can get.
Five Best Italian Stovetop Espresso Makers
Bialetti Elegance Venus
The Bialetti Elegance Venus, designed by the same team that brought you the Moka Pot, has a stunning steel body that is attractive and safe, and effective at transferring heat.
The insulated handle comes in handy when the brewer is hot, and it’s removable, so you can carry it with you on a long trip. The most notable aspect of Bialetti’s Elegance Venus, however, is that we can use it with any heating system, including induction hobs.
It’s available in four sizes, each of which serves four “cups.” However, servings are referred to as “cups” in this example, and each Moka Pot portion weighs roughly two ounces.
- Elegant and lovely design
- The aluminum structure of high quality
- The handle is insulated and will not get burned by the heat of the stove.
- It’s easily detachable, making it portable and maintenance-friendly.
- It lasts a long time.
- Because cups are small servings, the 4 and 6 cup versions may be annoying for some people.
Bialetti’s Moka Express
It’s yet another fantastic Moka pot from the Bialetti family, with a long list of impressive features.
The Original Bialetti is available in various sizes to match your needs, with cups ranging in size from one to twelve. It has a unique octagonal shape that facilitates even heat dispersion, which is essential for successful extraction.
The anodized aluminum body lends a touch of class to the design, and the Original Bialetti has a well-insulated grip for lifting when it’s hot. To top it off, this Moka Pot comes with an easy-to-follow disassembly guide.
Many campers like the single cup but bear in mind that true coffee connoisseurs demand their brew everywhere they go. It’s simple to transport because it doesn’t take up much space.
- A range of sizes and colors are available.
- The octagon shape makes coffee brewing easier.
- It is simple to travel and maintain due to the detachable body.
- It lasts a long time.
- It comes with a two-year warranty.
- It does not work well on an electric stove.
- Excellent for camping.
With thick, durable metal, a heat-resistant handle, and a silicone gasket, Grosche’s Milano is built to last and priced to compete.
Cups are available in sizes ranging from one to twelve.
Your Moka pots must comprise materials that can survive the heat when used over an open flame, unless you’re using an electric burner. Grosche’s Milano is the most durable and functional aluminum Moka pot we’ve seen so far.
It works on gas, electric, and induction stovetops; however, because it is not magnetic, it takes longer to heat an induction stovetop. They include a broad, soft-touch handle with burn protection that makes them simpler to handle than other stovetop coffee makers.
Aside from being composed of durable, food-grade aluminum, Grosche’s Milano includes a silicone gasket that will outlast many competitors’ rubber ones.
Furthermore, even if we’re not making espresso, we’re still dealing with pressure when brewing in a Moka pot. Silicone has low memory, making it less prone to creases than natural rubber. It will seal better and last longer as a result.
The use of low-cost plastic handles is another issue we noticed in other models. While these items should be alright with proper care and attention, one slip-up and you’ll be dealing with melted plastic or, at the absolute least, a handle that needs replacement — we’ve all been there!
The Milano by Grosche features a silicone-coated handle, so you won’t burn yourself reaching for it (as you might with plastic), and it won’t melt if you’re a little careless with it.
The handle, as with every aluminum model, is the only part of Grosche’s Milano that we don’t like. The Moka pots have a durable design.
You could toss them in a fire pit, which is something that occasionally happens around a campfire. Grosche’s Milano, on the other hand, is the best, most widely available choice we’ve found, and it’ll withstand almost everything.
- Works well with gas, electric, and camp stoves
- Vital parts and of excellent quality
- Not recommended for induction cooktops
- Slightly caustic
- It’s not dishwasher safe
Alessi Espresso Maker
The Alessi Espresso Maker 9090, designed by a renowned inventor named Richard Sapper, is an excellent representation of design and functionality coming together.
The 9090 prepares up to 6 total (1.6oz) espresso cups and comprises polished 18/10 stainless steel. Its cone design maximizes heat and results in a fuller, richer brew.
Every sip of espresso winds up in the glass, not on the countertop, thanks to an anti-drip spout and lever lock. The 9090 is compatible with a wide range of cooktops, including induction.
The 9090 is the final espresso maker you’ll ever buy because of its overall design and build quality.
- The aluminum construction of the highest quality
- Capacity is higher than average.
- Full-bodied coffee is delivered.
- It is simple to use.
- Spout with no spills
- The handle is more oversized and more ergonomic.
- All stovetops are compatible.
- It’s a little pricey
- On the base and upper chambers, there are no apparent marks.
Top Moka Stovetop Espresso Maker
Aluminum is the material of choice for this incredibly economical Top Moka espresso machine. It is ideal for those seeking the best Italian stovetop espresso machine but don’t want to break the piggy bank.
Despite its low price, it is a well-constructed and long-lasting stovetop coffee maker with polished metal construction.
The fact that it features a distinctive boiler shape and a double-thick base that will boost the heat distribution for more decadent coffee is something that many coffee enthusiasts will appreciate the most.
Because it has the least volume in our stovetop espresso machine reviews, this coffee maker is best suited for single use.
The design allows functionality on various stovetops, including gas and electricity, but it’s not suitable for steeping on induction stovetops. However, this is not a huge deal since induction stovetops are not prevalent.
- It is pretty inexpensive.
- Heavy-duty material with a double-thick bottom that is easy to use and clean
- Smaller brewing capacity; induction stovetops are not compatible.
What Is A Moka Pot and How Does it Work?
It’s an espresso-style coffee machine that’s been around for a long time. The Moka creates coffee in the same way that an espresso machine does, but with lower pressure.
The water heats in the lower chamber of a Moka pot; then the steam pushes up through the coffee on a screen above the hot water. As a result, you’ll get a solid shot of java that’s more like espresso than a typical American cup of joe.
It is, nevertheless, effective, especially if you want to make an authentic Italian espresso yourself. Moka pots have been a staple in Italy since the 1930s.
What to Look For When Buying an Italian Stovetop Coffee Maker
When buying a stovetop espresso machine, some factors to consider to ensure it is the correct one for you.
The Moka Coffee Pot’s Dimensions
It is a matter of personal taste. You can buy one-cup machines for yourself or enormous Italian coffee pots for a large family. Of course, any size in between is available.
If you plan to travel with it, a smaller pot may be preferable. Also, these are espresso cup sizes, not American coffee cup sizes, when deciding on cup size. If you like a double, go for a little larger one. By normal standards, a 6 cup coffee machine will create two standard-size cups of coffee.
Where The Moka Pot Originated
There’s a reason why so many people, stovetop or not, look for the most incredible Italian coffee machine. Coffee is taken seriously in Italy and has been for decades. Choosing a manufactured Moka pot from Italy is usually a sign of quality, but that isn’t always the case.
Does it Work With Your Stovetop?
In most kitchens, there are a few different kinds of stovetops. Gas, electric, and induction are the most frequent. The majority of Moka Pots state whether we could use them on an electric or induction burner. They’ll all work on gas burners in most cases.
It’s a different story with an induction stove.
Choose a more extensive or heavier pot in this scenario. That is especially true for the lightweight aluminum Moka pots. To use an induction cooktop, it should have a heavy base.
What Is The Best Way To Clean A Stovetop Coffee Maker?
It’s pretty simple to clean a Moka Pot. However, there may be a few dos and guidelines to follow to maintain the coffee maker in top condition. If carefully used and serviced, the best Italian coffee makers can survive for years.
We can’t wash aluminum Moka pots in the dishwasher, but we can clean a stainless steel one in the dishwasher, but I don’t recommend it. Some argue that it reduces life expectancy. Any stovetop coffee maker should be hand washed rather than put in the dishwasher.
What Kind of Coffee Should You Use in a Stovetop Coffee Maker?
Freshly ground beans are essential for releasing the smells and flavors of great coffee beans when brewing coffee at home. Although we can use any beans in a Moka pot, dark roast coffee is the best. For each cup, around 18-20 grams of coffee is approximately correct. If you’re unsure, go with an Italian coffee brand.
Which Coffee Grinder is Best For a Stovetop Coffee Maker?
A fine grind is the optimum coffee grind for a Moka Pot. It would help if you used the same or slightly coarse coffee grind size as you might for an espresso machine.
How To Make A Moka Pot Espresso?
Unscrew the bottom of the Italian Moka coffee pot to prepare coffee. Fill the coffee maker’s base with water until it reaches the waterline. Fill the filter basket halfway with ground coffee. For each cup, add around 20 grams of coffee. The coffee should evenly distribute but not pack too tightly.
Close the coffee maker’s lid with a twist. Both gas and electric stovetops are compatible with Italian coffee machines. Place the coffee maker on a low to medium flame if using a gas burner. Using too hot heat can burn the handle.
After a few moments, you’ll hear the coffee brewing and smell the delicious aroma. The steam-pressurized hot water will flow up via the spout and through the coffee grounds.
The Bottom Line
Now that you’ve read the guide, I hope that you feel well boosted to grab your first Italian stovetop espresso machine or upgrade so you can start creating traditional espresso drinks in Italian style.
If you’re searching for giant cups of drip coffee, they’re not the best option. A stovetop espresso maker, when used with high standard espresso beans, delivers Italian cafe culture into the household and their cups, as I’ve come to know and get adjusted to, are smaller than the typical American measurement.
When using an Italian Moka pot for the first time, it’s advisable to stay close by and watch the coffee brew to adjust the heat or double-check that you’re using the machine appropriately. Follow the guidelines, and you’ll be a Moka pro in no time!