Some people think it's nearly impossible to make great espresso at home.
The common misconception is that you need a super expensive, complicated espresso maker with hours of practice to make a decent shot.
The Bellman Espresso Steamer CX 25P proves that's not the case!
Anyone on the hunt for an excellent stovetop espresso maker that doesn't break the bank or require a 4-year degree in "Brewology" will find precisely what they're after with the Bellman CX25P.
Easily able to produce lavish espresso and silky steamed milk - read on to get the full scoop and find out if the Bellman CX25P is the right at-home espresso maker for you!
What You’ll Find Here:
- Everything you need to know about the Bellman CX25P
- Pros & Cons: What I like about it and what you need to consider
- How to use it to make an amazing coffee
- The Best Place To Buy It
- Any alternatives I think are worth considering
The Bellman CX25P - REVIEW BY DARCY | THE BIRCHER BAR FOUNDER & OWNER:
- Make any style of coffee you like (espresso, americano, latte, cappuccino - you name it!)
- Inexpensive compared to other coffee makers of the same quality
- Solid, durable and robust stainless steel construction
- Easy to make variable coffee amounts & strengths
- Works on almost any stove-top & campfire
- Reputable and widely-regarded brand and model
- Takes a couple of pours to master it, but it's definitely worth persisting
Build & Design:
The CX25P is an all-in-one coffee maker & milk steamer.
From the classic short black and long black through to lattes and cappuccinos - its built to make just about any style of coffee. With a solid stainless steel construction, the Bellman CX25 won't ever break, is difficult to scratch, and is easy to clean.
Stainless steel also conducts heat very efficiently - allowing you to use the CX25P with any stove-top, whether gas, electric, ceramic, as well as most induction cooktops.
Relatively lightweight and portable it's an easy one to pack in for road trips or campouts. I've personally brewed it on a campfire, and it makes a delectable espresso while out in the wilderness! Just make sure the flames aren't raging, or you'll melt the rubber handle and ceramic steam knob.
The Bellman CX25P contains:
- a water boiler
- coffee-grind basket w/ basket reducer
- screw-on lid w/ release valve
- attached pressure gauge
- café-style steam wand w/ release knob
Unlike many traditional bench-top espresso machines, the Bellman CX25P can brew 3, 6, or 9 shots at once. As such, the CX25P not only allows you to make a quick, easy and delicious coffee for yourself, but also for friends and family!
Making espresso with the CX25P stovetop espresso maker does have a few nuances you'll have to be aware of to brew with it appropriately.
Here's a full breakdown of the process.
Choosing Espresso Amount & Strength:
As already mentioned, the ability to select the brew amount and control strength is one of my favourite things about the Bellman.
The process is made easy as the water boiler has markings for 3, 6, or 9 cups of water, and the filter basket also shows the correlating levels for the three different doses.
- For 9 espresso servings (50 grams), simply fill the basket full of coffee grinds to the top.
- For 6 servings (30 grams), place the basket reducer face up.
- For 3 espresso servings (15 grams), put the basket reducer face down.
You can experiment yourself and mix and match water/basket levels to fine-tune the strength as well. For an extra-strong espresso brew, fill the water level to 3 in the boiler, with the basket full of grinds and no reducer.
How To Use The Bellman CX25P:
Before we dive into the brewing and streaming process, here are a few top tips to consider:
The Right Pressure:
Getting the right pressure with the Bellman CX 25P is extremely simple. Using the attached gauge, heat the unit until you reach 2 to 2 ½ bars of pressure (the 'green zone'). If the pressure accidentally reaches 4 bars or over, take the device off the stove-top and wait until the pressure lowers.
Pouring the Perfect Shot:
Once you have reached 2 to 2.5 bars of pressure, twist the release valve very slightly until the coffee streams out. If you open the valve too much, you'll expel too much pressure too quickly and not produce a nice crema or a full batch.
Frothy Milk with the Steam Wand:
A key tip with the steam wand is to release or 'purge' the initial steam ad water build-up before placing the wand in the milk. That super-hot, wet steam at the start will burn the milk and spoil the foaming process.
With these top tips in mind - here's a quick step-by-step process to get you up and running with the Bellman:
Brewing Your Coffee:
- Fill the boiler with hot water to your desired amount.
- Fill the basket with finely-ground coffee and place inside the boiler.
- Use a tamper to compress the grinds down lightly.
- Place a paper filter on top of the grinds for optimal brewing.
- Screw the lid on tightly & make sure the steam knob is closed.
- Place on a stove-top at medium to high heat.
- When the pressure gauge reaches the green zone, release your coffee
Steaming The Milk:
- After you've released your coffee, place the CX25P back on the stove at low heat until the pressure builds to the top of the 'green zone'.
- 'Purge' any built-up water from your steam wand and then place it into your milk jug.
- Turn on the steamer knob. Allow the tip of the wand to agitate the surface of the milk for 3-5 seconds, and then submerge the wand halfway into the milk so that the milk swirls around in a circle.
- When the milk reaches 60 degrees Celsius, turn off the steamer and remove the wand from your milk. Purge and clean the wand.
- Pour your silky milk into your coffee and enjoy!
Note: To make sure there is not excess built-up pressure, do not to fill with water past the handle.The video below from the awesome crew at Alternative Brewing is great walkthrough guide on using the Bellman - I highly recommend you hit play and give it a watch!
Where To Buy The Bellman CX25P?:
Not an impossible task, however, the Bellman CX25P is a hard item to find stocked at your local cafe or coffee gear retailer. I've found buying it online is the best way to get a hold of it in terms of both availability and pricing.
Click the big blue button or any of the banners in this article to head over and check the current stock levels and best prices available for the Bellman CX25P.
Bellman Alternatives To Consider:
If you're after something a bit smaller than the Bellman or chasing a completely different style of coffee, check out some of our other favourites below:
One of the most famous and popular single-serve coffee makers on the planet, the AeroPress is inexpensive and brilliant for making small batches of high-quality coffee.
If espresso is not your style, cold brew might just be! The BOD Brewer is a brilliant way to make it at home and keep it on hand for weeks!
The worlds finest and most sought after pour-over coffee maker! One of the easiest ways to make coffee on the planet.
The Bellman CX25P stovetop espresso maker does take some finessing to create your ideal coffee, but once you've poured a few shots and dialled it in exactly how you like it - it's easily one of the best coffee makers for the money on the market!
With full control over how much coffee you'd like to make and a stainless steel construction for brewing on almost any stovetop or campfire, it is undoubtedly one of the most versatile coffee makers available. Sporting such a sturdy build means the CX25P coffee maker may even outlast you and become a family heirloom for your grandkids to admire as well!
Robust, versatile, portable and super high-quality - the Bellman CX25P has you covered at all stops, and will quickly become one of your favourite kitchen and camping items!
Thanks From The Bircher Bar!
I hope you've enjoyed this review and found it helpful! 😊
If you have any more questions at all, don't hesitate to send us an email - always happy to help out.
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