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Wacaco Nanopresso (Portable Espresso Machine)

Caffeinating at the campsite just entered a new era.

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MSRP: $64.90

BEST FOR: Camping, backpacking

No more packets of instant coffee; no more bitter, sludgy cowboy coffee. Caffeinating at the campsite just entered a new era with the Nanopresso, by Wacaco.

The shot of espresso you get out of this thing is quality—somewhat surprising considering how compact and simple the Nanopresso is. It weighs under 12 ounces and is half-a-foot long. All the various pieces screw and snap together quite intuitively.

The process of making your espresso, while somewhat more involved, is still quite intuitive. Once you have your grounds tamped in the basket and your water chamber filled with pre-boiled water, you simply unlock the little pump located on the side and pump it 30 times—give or take—once per second, to get your gourmet morning ristretto or lungo. Obviously the quality of the coffee beans you use will have a major bearing on how good your espresso tastes, but we found that the Nanopresso pulled a remarkably smooth, flavorful shot with the medium roast (and medium-priced) coffee we usually buy. It even delivers a nice layer of crema on top of your shot.

The biggest drawback for us is that cleaning all the individual pieces of the Nanopresso takes a bit longer than rinsing your cup after, say, a Starbucks Via, but this cup o’ joe is is probably worth that little bit of extra tidying up required.


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Rock and Ice vigorously tests all gear it reviews for either 50 days or 50 pitches. This is a time-consuming process and limits the amount of new equipment we can present to our readers. Every year hundreds of new products hit store shelves, and most of these aren’t reviewed due to our stringent selection and review process. To better keep you more up to date on what is new, we present First Look. Gear in First Look has not always been field tested, but is gear we think you’d like to know about as soon as it is available. Some of the gear will be reviewed using our 50 days/50 pitches criteria, in future print and online editions of Rock and Ice.