With the Breville Oracle Touch making café quality coffee at home is right at your fingertips.
The worst thing in the morning is waiting in line at Starbucks, right? The line is always super long. And there’s always that gal in front of you ordering two-pumps of something or other in her half-decaf-half-bold-soy-pumpkin-spice-venti. Or the guy that takes forever to order because he’s talking on his iPhone. You’d like to avoid the lines and brew your own specialty coffees at home but you know nothing about espresso machines. They all look so complicated. Besides, fooling around with a portafilter and a steam wand—if you even know what they are—first thing in the morning is too important a task to be done before you’ve had your morning coffee, right?
But what if you could just touch a button? What if you were able to make your own barista quality lattes, espressos, and more in the privacy of your home at the flick of a finger? And what if you didn’t need the skills of a barista? What if?
You can go bonkers watching all the YouTube videos about how to make the perfect espresso. But in reality, it doesn’t matter whether you know how to perfect dose amount, water temperature, pressure, or other variants. No matter what the videos show, making specialty coffees doesn’t need to be complex. In fact, what’s simpler than touching a button? It doesn’t require any special skills or ability. And that’s what Breville wants you to know.
So what separates the Breville Oracle Touch from the rest of the espresso machines out there? We’ve looked at a lot of them over the years. Amid all the testing, here are four things that stand out.
- The Breville Oracle Touch is the first automatic espresso machine Breville has built for the private home. This next generation machine strikes a balance between convenience and quality with a dead-simple operation that turns amateur coffee enthusiasts into seasoned baristas. We’d be surprised if any automatic machine beats the performance of the Touch. Like, really surprised. The only machine that has a chance in our opinion is the Jura GIGA 5, but it costs twice as much. We haven’t tested it yet, but we did compare the Touch to the Jura J90. The Touch is better.
- True to its name, the elegant Breville Oracle Touch features a 4-inch TFT display that lets you roll through menus, change settings, and program and save custom drinks. Just touch a button and you’ll soon be enjoying one of 5 pre-programmed café favorites—pure espresso, Americano, latte, flat white, and cappuccino. You can also create, save and name 8 customizable coffee settings.
- The Breville Oracle Touch’s impressive capabilities reinterpret traditional espresso machine design.The Touch stores whole beans, grinds them with an integrated conical burr grinder directly into a portafilter, doses and tamps, and then pulls a shot. So don’t worry, you don’t have to master those complex swirling motions you’ve seen on YouTube. What’s more, the Touch uses digital temperature (PID) technology to keep temperature at its optimum range. Using PID doesn’t necessarily mean better tasting espresso, but it can help. That’s because temperature changes as little as 2°F can mean the difference between an ashy espresso and a balanced one.
- The Breville Oracle Touch features a twin set of boilers. One boiler is for preparing espresso and the other for heating cold milk. The Touch’s smart steam wand automatically foams milk to your taste and preferred temperature for making lattes, flat whites, and cappuccinos while the shot is pouring. And when you’re done steaming, the wand automatically purges for you! Which means you can say goodbye to mucky steam wands, a feature that will help keep your Touch gleaming. And extend its life.
The Not So Good
This is a pricey machine. And it’s a large machine, too, standing 18 inches tall.
The Bottom Line
No espresso machine we’ve ever tested straddles the line this skillfully between hands on and handholding, and the Touch’s operating system is our hands-down favorite. It offers an impressive amount of customization while automating enough that you’d have to try hard to screw up. For savvy shoppers who prioritize whipping up delicious espresso for as little money as possible, the Touch might be a stretch. After all, you can pay less for a Bahamas cruise. So if you don’t care about fine-tuning things like PID, and if a single boiler and a steam wand that doesn’t purge is acceptable to you, Breville’s Barista Express is a lot cheaper. But for those who can shell out big bucks, the Breville Oracle Touch is an outstanding machine that doesn’t just grind whole coffee beans, froth milk, and pull espresso shots—it does it mostly on its own.