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The Bottom Line
Want an espresso machine that is the best bang for the buck in the Semi-Automatic Heat Exchanger Category? If so, the Quick Mill Andreja Premium is perfect for you.
The Quickmill Andreja Premium Espresso Machine available from Amazon
Quick Mill has a lengthy reputation of high quality inside the espresso machineniche, and the Andreja Premium lives up to the quality that Quick Mill is known for. The Quick Mill Andreja Premium Espresso Machine would make you a perfect first and perhaps only model if one follows the “buy once, cry once” mantra.
It is also a logical upgrade from a more basic machine such as a Rancilio Silvia and a Baby Gaggia. Outfitted with some accessories, the machine could even serve inside of a small coffee bar or for a business looking to expand into espresso and lattes.
The Quick Mill Andreja Premium is a heat exhanger semi-automatic espresso machine featuring quality construction at an excellent price; it features a 52 watt Ulka vibratory pump, a 1400 watt heating element, and insulated 1.6 liter copper boiler.
The on board E-61 brew group has been an industry standard for years and this superior boiler design will continue to dominate the upper tier of home and small restaurant Espresso Machines which means parts and accessories will always be available.
The cup warming tray features a hinged top cover that allows easy access to the 3 liter water tank.
An optional kit allows direct connection of the machine to water lines. This is one of those features that you’ll never no how you lived without it until you’ve tried.
E61 Groups require more than a little flushing while dialing in their initial espesso shot temperatures and if the machine is left idle for a period, they require a new round of flushing.
This uses more water than you think and having your machine hooked directly into your plumbing, coupled with the large 34 ounce drip tray, means is one less thing you need to worry about.
No Burn Steam Arms and separate hot-water arms set this unit apart from most other comparable products. Double insulation allows the barista to grab either arm at any point without the fear a being burned.
Moreover, optional multi-directional joystick steam and hot water assemblies are available, allowing the user to swivel the arms to any location AND operate with a simple pull of a lever instead of turning knobs.
Best for home, office, or a small restaurant (output capacity of 20 Espressos per hour).
A great machine for a great price that will serve you for many years and many espressos down the road!
At a Glance
- Commercial Quality E61 Group and Copper Boiler
- Large 3L Water Tank and Magnetic Water Level Sensor
- No Burn Steam Wand and Hotwater Nozzle
- 52 Watt Ulka Pump
- Large Electronic Indicator Lights
- Optional Joystick Assemblies
- Big 46 oz Drip Tray
- Optional Direct Plumbing
- Commercial Grade E61 Group and Copper Boiler.
- Large Drip Tray – The Andreja Premium features a large 34 oz drip tray.
- Separate Boiler and Brew Pressure Gauges.
- Compact Design – Is able to fit under all standard sized kitchen cabinets and takes up minimal counter space.
- Low Water Alarm.
- Top Quality Construction – Italian manufactured from top grade stainless steel with attention to fit and finish. Quick Mill is well known for keeping parts on hand for decades giving you the peace of mind that this machine may be a one time purchase.
- Somewhat Noisy – Like all vibratory pump equipped units, the pump is somewhat loud. You will need to step up in feature set and price to find a unit equipped, with a rotatory pump if noise is a concern. A close sibling of the Andreja Premium, the Quick Mill Vetrano Rotary, fixes this issue by including a rotary pump (at a higher price) but no internal tank (direct water line hook up).
- Slow to Warm Up From a Cold Start – Do to the heavy construction (46 lbs of stainless steel and copper), the machine takes 18-22 minutes to minimally warm up to brew temperature when turned off and an hour warm up time is best.
Comparison to Similar Products
The Quick Mill Andreja Premium is often compared to the Rocket Cellini Premium Plus.
The Andreja includes a much bigger drip tray over the Cellini (10 oz) while the Cellini features a horizontally mounted boiler giving it a very slight advantage in heating times. Also, the Cellini includes a very nicely crafted tamper with purchase.
Techniques, Tips and Tricks
A digital thermometer is recommended for any HX machine. These devices screw directly into the group head and are helpful in overcoming the “temperature surfing” issues inherent with heat exhangers.
I also recommend an appliance timer be used for scheduling if you do not want to leave the machine on.
Unlike some of their competitors, Quick Mill utilizes very high quality 304 (18/8) stainless steel throughout it construction. 304 stainless has relatively high percentages of both nickel and chromium allowing it to be highly resistant to rusting and staining from acid (i.e. Coffee) and alkaline liquids.
Magnetic Water Level Sensor
The Andreja Premium is equipped with a magnetic sensor that gives you an audible alert when the water level is low. The alert is set to notify you prior to completely running out of water.
However, you can still easily complete the shot that you are pulling and several more prior to the sensor shutting off the power to the heater.
Note that even if you do not add water then only heater power is turned off; pump power remains available allowing for the remainder of a shot to be completed.
Optional Direct Plumbing
You can alternate between water provided from on board 3 liter (101 ounces) reservoir or you can easily install the optional plumbing kit to allow the machine to draw off existing water lines.
The kit contains every part you will require plus the Andreja already features entry openings for all the required lines.
Although it might seem to many like a unnecessary extravagance, you’ll be amazed how frequently the reservoir requires filling up, given that flushing and a brief spray to wash the grouphead of loose grinds calls for about 5-8 oz of of h2o.
It’s not unusual to empty fifty percent of the reservoir in a single day and require numerous refills when you have guests.
Besides the usefulness, having a direct hook up will negate the requirement for once a week reservoir maintenance as well as eliminate worries regarding the boiler heating up the tank.
The sole disadvantage is the fact that the pump water that is usually drained into the reservoir through the expansion valve is going to drain directly into the drip tray, necessitating that you dump it more regularly.
Nevertheless, once you spend some time relishing this feature, you will wonder how come you didn’t install it earlier.
Optional Joystick Assemblies
The Andreja Premium can be equipped with multi-directional joystick steam and hot water assemblies. These assemblies are an optional, but a highly recommended upgrade.
Besides looking cool, the joysticks are useful in commercial operations to assist in preventing repetitive stress injuries.
Turning the knobs for hours on end could develop a problem for hands and wrists, as opposed to a joystick or handle that is a simple up and down action.
No Burn Steam Wand and Hotwater Nozzle
To assist in steaming and frothing milk for lattes and cappuccinos, the Quick Mill features a “no burn” steam wand that shields you (and any nearby children) from potential burns by ensuring that steam wand handle stays cool to the touch and that only the nozzle gets hot.
The wand has a four hole tip and a large control knob ergonomically place at the top of the wand. The stainless hot water nozzle also features “no bun” technology similar to that of the steam wand.
This feature is indispensable for crafting café Americanos and for providing hot water for teas, hot chocolate, or any heated beverage.
Commercial Quality E-61 Brew Group and Boiler
A professional quality E-61 brew group makes up the heart of the Andreja Premium. The high quality 1.6 liter copper boiler is double insulated leading to better efficiency and keeps the heat where it is needed-in the boiler and NOT in your kitchen.
Hot water is constantly circulated between the boiler and brew-group to ensure proper brewing temperature click here for more information on how heat exchanger and thermosyphon systems operate.
The patented E-61 brew group is standardized throughout the industry ensuring that replacement parts will always be available leading to a very long life for all machines designed around this robust system.
52 Watt Ulka Pump
This Quick Mill Andreja Premium model has been upgraded to feature a quiet 52 Watt Ulka Pump with bass ends and thermal protection.
This pump features over 30% more power over the less expensive 41 watt pumps used by competitors allowing it to work much more efficiently with less strain and significantly reducing noise.
Built in thermal overload protection protects the pump by shutting it off if it runs too long and gets too hot and protects your investment for years to come.
Large Electronic Indicator Lights.
Three large indicator lights allow the barista to easily observe the status of the machine. The indicator on the left is on when the machine is powered up.
The two lights to the right indicate the boiler’s status. Green means the boiler is at the correct temperature and red means it is heating.
The only feature that the Quick Mill Andreja Premium is lacking within the HX class of machines is a rotary pump which would quieten down pump noise.
If this is a feature that you think you may require, check out the Andreja’s bigger sister, the Quick Mill Vetrano Rotary which retains the no burn wands but replaces the vibratory pump with a rotary pump; however it is direct plumbed only (no tank).
If the Andreja is not quite in your budget you may check out the Quick Mill Anita which basically does away with the no burn arms and the ability to hook to water lines. A bit less money for a bit less capability.
As with all E61 based HX Machines, a Digital Thermometer that screws directly into grouphead is a good investment and allows you to quickly dial in the correct temperatures so that you don’t spend endless amounts of time or water (especially if you aren’t directly plumbed into waterlines) to get to the proper temperature for your brew.
All in all, I would say the Andreja would make a great first machine if you want to skip past all of the entry level units and would make a dandy brewer for an experienced home barista. Check it on Amazon today.
About Mike Quinn
Mike Quinn spent 20 years in the US Army and traveled extensively all over the world. As part of his military service, Mike sampled coffee and tea from all virtually every geographic region, from the beans from the plantation of an El Salvadorian Army Colonel to "Chi" in Iraq to Turkish Coffee in the Turkish Embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan. He spent nearly a decade in the Republic of Korea where he was exposed to all forms of traditional teas. Mike formerly owned and operated Cup And Brew, an online espresso and coffee equipment retail operation.