Café Affetto Automatic Espresso Machine Review: Style and Quality in a Small Package

Hi! My name is Arne. Having spent years working as a barista I'm now on a mission to bring more good coffee to the people. To that end, my team and I provide you with a broad knowledge base on the subject of coffee.

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This Café Affetto Automatic Espresso Machine review was a long time coming. GE’s espresso machine has been out for a couple years now, and it’s gotten pretty good reviews from the general kitchen appliance community.

This Café Affetto Automatic Espresso Machine review was a long time coming. GE’s espresso machine has been out for a couple years now, and it’s gotten pretty good reviews from the general kitchen appliance community.

That said, not many folks in the coffee industry have given it a thorough once-over. So, I’ve decided to take one for the team and write this initial Café Affetto Automatic Espresso Machine review. Who knows, maybe I’ll end up buying the thing to test out.

Sleek and minimalist machine

Café Affetto Automatic Espresso Machine

An intriguing smart coffee maker

Easy to use

Great value

Good build quality

Looks superb

Steam wand not the best

Overview: Café Affetto Automatic Espresso Machine Review

The Café Affetto Automatic Espresso Machine is a stylish espresso maker from home appliance giant GE. With its Café line, GE has entered the world of coffee supplies and other small appliances.

So far, they’ve done a pretty good job with designs that prioritize coffee quality. In fact, in a recent review I counted the Café Specialty Drip Coffee Maker as one of the best smart coffee makers.

Consequently, I have some pretty high hopes for the Café Affetto Automatic Espresso Machine. That being said, I can’t forget the reality that it can be pretty hit or miss with espresso machines carrying such a low $629.00 price tag.

Anyway, back to the espresso maker itself. The Café Affetto espresso machine is a beauty, available in a few different colorways and accented with polished copper.

Though it’s a compact espresso machine, it’s got it all: a built-in conical burr grinder, a thermoblock heating element and a steam wand for frothing milk. I’ll explore these features later on in this Café Affetto Automatic Espresso Machine review.

What’s more, the Café Affetto is a smart automatic espresso machine. You can connect the machine to GE’s SmartHQ app, where you can personalize an espresso recipe for the “MyCup” setting.

In addition to the app, the user interface on the machine itself is intuitive and easy to navigate. At the same time, it’s aesthetically simple.

Brewing espresso has never been easier, thanks to the Café Affetto Automatic Espresso Machine. Plus, this machine will look just gorgeous on any countertop. While this is only an initial review, I really think the Café Affetto has a lot of potential to be a great super automatic espresso machine.

Café Affetto Automatic Espresso Machine Features

Throughout the rest of this Café Affetto Automatic Espresso Machine review, I’ll break down the unique features of this stylish home coffee maker. Let’s get into it!

Size and Design

Café Affetto Automatic Espresso Machine Size and Design

If you’re acquainted with GE products or even my own website, the Café Affetto may look suspiciously familiar. In fact, it looks a lot like the GE Profile Automatic Espresso Machine, just a little prettier … and more expensive.

I suppose I can’t blame a manufacturer for copying its own design and charging a bit more for updated features. Although honestly, these two machines seem pretty comparable.

Well, I’ll put the Café Affetto through some rigorous testing when I finally get it in my hands to make sure it’s worth the extra cash. For now, I’ll celebrate the beauty and efficient design of this compact automatic espresso machine.

The design is simple yet elegant, perfect for a minimalist kitchen. Notable features on the front of the espresso maker include a copper dispensing spout, a steam wand and a removable drip tray. And that’s it!

All the other bibs and bobs, which I’ll discuss in a bit, are camouflaged into the top, back and sides of the machine. In other words, there’s nothing distracting or busy about this espresso machine.

What’s more, the body seems pretty durable, featuring a mix of stainless steel, copper and plastic materials. The drip tray connects to the body via magnets, so it’s easy to remove but won’t slosh around when you’re using it.

As I mentioned, the Café Affetto is pretty compact for an automatic espresso machine; it’s only got a 7-inch (17-centimeter) wide footprint. That said, it’s 16 inches (40 centimeters) in depth and 12.5 inches (31 centimeters) tall, so you do need to be mindful of your counter space and any overhanging cabinets or shelves.

Colors

I’ve already mentioned the colorways a few times throughout this Café Affetto Automatic Espresso Machine review. Still, I’ll reiterate for good measure.

The Café Affetto comes in three colors: Matte White, Matte Black and Steel Silver. By the way, all of the colorways feature stylish polished copper accents on the spout and drip tray.

If you read Coffeeness regularly, you know that I drool over shiny stainless steel coffee gear. However, in this case I find the silver to look a tad weird with the copper.

In my opinion, the contrast of the Matte White with copper accents looks the best. That said, I could definitely see myself being a little obsessive about wiping espresso splatters off the white machine.

But hey, this espresso machine comes with a microfiber cleaning cloth for a reason! Might as well use it.

User Interface

Here’s the cool thing about this espresso machine: instead of putting all the buttons on the front of the machine, the user interface is hidden on the top. This helps maintain a stylish and sleek appearance.

The top of the machine features an LED panel with capacitive touch keys. So, there are no buttons to press.

While many folks would consider touch keys a nice feature, the absence of buttons could make it more difficult for those who are visually-impaired to navigate the settings. In that case, a more accessible super automatic could be a better option.

Incidentally, the Café Affetto Automatic Espresso Machine features six touch keys: a power key and five different brew options. The brew settings include Espresso, Americano, MyCup, Steam and Hot Water.

“Espresso” and “Americano” are pretty self-explanatory. The default “MyCup” setting is a short ristretto shot, but that can be changed using the SmartHQ App. Finally, you press “Steam” to use the steam wand and “Hot Water” for, well, hot water. See, very intuitive!

SmartHQ App

Café Affetto Automatic Espresso Machine SmartHQ App

The user interface of this smart automatic espresso machine is thorough enough that you don’t need the app to use the machine. That said, GE’s SmartHQ app allows you to access a few other features.

In particular, the app allows you to control the strength and volume of your shots. While this still wouldn’t offer enough control for the seasoned barista, a more casual espresso drinker could be satisfied with this level of programming.

Plus, as I mentioned, you can program the MyCup touch key to whatever recipe you like. This means, once you connect the app to the espresso maker, you won’t need the app to access your favorite recipe.

I should mention that the Café Affetto Automatic Espresso Machine uses a WiFi connection to communicate with the app. Some buyers have had some difficulty with the initial WiFi setup; I’ll report back on this potential issue as soon as I have the Café Affetto in my kitchen.

By the way, if you were wondering how to program a pre-infusion to your shots, not to worry: pre-infusion is a default setting in this automatic espresso machine.

Okay, what else can the SmartHQ app do? Importantly, it reminds you to do some regular coffee maker maintenance.

More specifically, the app alerts you when you need to clean your espresso machine, empty out the coffee grounds bin and refill the bean hopper or water reservoir. Oh, and it even tells you when to empty the drip tray.

Incidentally, if you have more than one smart GE product, you can use the SmartHQ app to control your other devices, too.

Burr Grinder

The built-in conical burr grinder sits below the 6.5-ounce (184-gram) capacity sealed bean hopper. Unfortunately, the hopper is too small to fit a whole coffee bag. I’d suggest you invest in a coffee canister to store your coffee beans until you’re ready to use them.

The hopper and burr grinder are hidden behind a door on the top of the machine. I’ll admit, this could be frustrating for those who like to see how full the hopper is (ahem, me). Still, you can be assured that the SmartHQ app will tell you when to add more espresso beans.

As for the grinder, it has conical burrs with five adjustment settings. While you won’t be able to precisely dial in your grind size, it offers more adjustments than you can find in many super automatic espresso machines.

What’s more, adjusting the grind is very easy. Simply take the lid off the bean hopper and turn the dial for a finer or coarser grind.

I know plenty of you are rolling your eyes at the thought of an espresso grinder fitted with conical burrs. But in the conical vs flat burr debate, there is no proven winner!

Milk Froth

Café Affetto Automatic Espresso Machine Milk Froth

Any high quality espresso machine has to have a milk frother, right?

Well, not quite. But good news for latte lovers: the Café Affetto Automatic Espresso Machine features a stainless steel steam wand. What’s more, it comes with an included stainless steel milk pitcher for frothing milk. I really think the added accessory is a nice touch, especially for beginner home baristas who are building up their coffee bar accessories.

Incidentally, the steam wand is even removable, making for easy clean-up. Besides, nobody wants sticky, sour milk residue on their steam wand. Yuck.

Unfortunately, I do have some potential critiques here. The steam wand doesn’t move much, so you’d be hard pressed to find the right angle for steaming milk

What’s worse, the steaming power isn’t the best quality. You end up with big bubbles in your milk instead of smooth, silky microfoam.

Anyway, if you’re a purist who can’t fathom adding milk to your ‘spro, you can disregard this whole section and instead buy the (cheaper) Café Affetto model without a steam wand.

Specialty Drinks

As I mentioned, you’ve got a few options for specialty drink settings: traditional espresso, americano and MyCup.

The Americano setting is particularly cool, in my opinion. The Café Affetto espresso machine pulls a shot of espresso, ejects the coffee grounds into its waste basket, and then finishes the drink off with a generous pour of hot water. That’s right, no over extracted lungos here!

Plus, thanks to the steam wand you can make cortados, macchiatos, cappuccinos, lattes, flat whites… you name it. Hey, might as well whip up some homemade simple syrups and get a few mixers while you’re at it. Espresso tonic, anyone? How about an espresso martini? Or maybe a lavender latte? The possibilities are endless.

Thermoblock Heating System and Pressure

GE claims that its Café Affetto Automatic Espresso Machine can heat water and pull a shot within 90 seconds. Incidentally, that’s really only possible with a thermoblock heating system. So, there you have it.

As far as the pressure goes, this baby can achieve a whopping 20 bars of pressure. Needless to say, you know you’re drinking real espresso.

Of course, it helps that the internal brew group is pressurized, too. But that’s a given in pretty much any super automatic espresso machine on the market.

It’s worth noting that 20 bars of pressure is quite a bit more than is required for true espresso. Plenty of coffee professionals prefer the brewing time and profile of a machine that produces 9 bars of pressure.

Removable Water Tank

Café Affetto Automatic Espresso Machine Water Tank

The water reservoir on the Cafe Affetto is located in the back of the machine, and is accessible via a handle on the top. The reservoir is opaque, so you won’t be able to see how much water is in it. That said, the SmartHQ app will let you know when you’re running low.

And honestly, you’ll run low quite often if you make more than one or two drinks a day. The water tank has a 40.5-ounce (1.2-liter) capacity, which won’t last for long – especially if you like to preheat your espresso cups and steam milk.

Fortunately, the water tank is easy to remove and fill, thanks to the handle on the top. Just don’t forget the filtered water!

Cup Height

Plenty of espresso machines can’t fit a full sized travel mug under the coffee spout, and it’s no different with the Café Affetto espresso machine. That said, the spout can be raised and lowered by a few inches, so it gives you a bit of leeway.

Still, I’d recommend investing in an espresso cup to pull your espresso shot into. You can then transfer the shot into whatever cup you like, or sip it straight.

Come to think of it, a cappuccino cup or latte cup that’s short and stout would probably fit too. After all, the manufacturer claims that 3.75 inches (9.5 centimeters) is the maximum cup height.

How to Use the Café Affetto Automatic Espresso Machine

If you’re considering the Café Affetto espresso machine for your home coffee maker, you’ll need to know how to use it first. So, I’ll give you a brief rundown of the process.

First, download the SmartHQ app to access the smart features of this espresso maker. You’ll also want to consult the user manual for tips on setting up the espresso machine’s WiFi connection. In short, press and hold the Hot Water key on the top of the machine until it connects.

Next, fill the machine with coffee beans and filtered water. Tap the power button to turn the machine on. From here, you can get a little creative.

Café Affetto Automatic Espresso Machine How to Use

Are you feeling a plain old espresso shot or americano? Maybe you want a mouth-puckering ristretto shot? Or perhaps you already programmed your favorite espresso recipe into the MyCup key?

Whatever you’re in the mood for, simply press the corresponding key on top of the machine and do something else for a minute and a half. By the time you’re back, the espresso will be waiting for you.

If you want some milk foam with your ‘spro, you know the drill. Once the shot is done pulling, pour some cold milk into your milk pitcher. Then, orient the steam wand inside your pitcher and press the steam key. When the water heats up to the right temperature, the steam wand will turn on.

Now’s the hard part! Use your fancy barista skills to steam the milk into the perfect latte art texture, and pour away.

Café Affetto Cleaning

Cleaning this Café Affetto espresso machine isn’t necessarily a breeze, but that’s kind of to be expected with a super automatic.

After all, there’s a water reservoir, thermoblock heating coil, burr grinder, brew group and milk frother all in one machine. There’s bound to be all sorts of nooks and crannies for coffee grounds to get stuck in.

Fortunately, GE has prioritized the cleaning process. Every Café Affetto espresso machine comes with a cleaning kit, and the SmartHQ app will let you know when it’s time to do some machine cleaning or maintenance. Plus, much of the espresso maker is removable for easy cleaning.

For instance, the drip tray, steam wand, water reservoir and grinds bin all come out and can be cleaned with warm water and mild soap.

What’s more, you can move the coffee spout up and down to wipe the body of the machine. You can do this with a simple microfiber cloth, which is included in the Café Affetto’s complimentary cleaning kit.

Incidentally, even the Café Affetto’s brew unit can be removed through the side service panel, which attaches via magnets. You can clean the brew unit with warm water, and vacuum or wipe out any coffee residue inside of the machine. Just make sure the brew unit is fully dry before putting it back in.

Finally, you’ll also want to regularly descale your coffee maker, even if you’re diligent about using filtered water. None of us are perfect, and that includes filtered water.

Café Affetto Technical Specifications

Café Affetto Automatic Espresso Machine
Manufacturer

Cafe

Model number

C7CEBBS4RW3

Product category

Super automatic espresso machine

Removable brew group

Housing material

Plastic

Color options

Matte Black, Matte White, Steel Silver

Milk frother

Steam wand

User interface

Buttons and dials

App

User profiles

Memo function only

Removable water reservoir

Water reservoir capacity

40.6 fl oz / 1.2 l

Number of boilers

1

Pump pressure

20 bar

Maximum cup height

3.8 in / 9.7 cm

Minimum cup height

2.0 in / 5.1 cm

Grinder

Stainless steel conical burr grinder

Grind adjustment levels

5

Bean hopper capacity

6.7 oz / 190.0 g

Pre-ground coffee bypass

Grounds discard container capacity

8

Specialty drinks

3

Pre-infusion

Adjustable coffee temperature

Adjustable milk foam temperature

Adjustable milk temperature

2-cup function

No

Pot function

Hot water function

Hot milk function

Milk foam only option

Water filter

Power consumption

1470 W

Weight

18.8 lb / 8.5 kg

Dimensions

12.5 x 7.1 x 16.1 in
31.8 x 18.0 x 40.9 cm

Warranty

1 year

Notes

Included Accessories: User manual, microfiber cloth, milk pitcher, cleaning supplies, water hardness test strip

Current price on Amazon

$629.00

All specifications

Verdict: Café Affetto Automatic Espresso Machine Review

Sleek and minimalist machine

Café Affetto Automatic Espresso Machine

An intriguing smart coffee maker

Easy to use

Great value

Good build quality

Looks superb

Steam wand not the best

Now that I’ve reached the end of this Café Affetto Automatic Espresso Machine review, I can say that this machine definitely has potential to be a great home espresso maker.

In particular, I’d recommend this machine to beginner home baristas who want room for customization and prefer the convenience of a super automatic.

I think the limited grind size adjustments would disappoint an experienced barista, but could delight a novice.

Even with the limited grind adjustments, the Café Affetto seems to produce pretty great espresso. That said, I’ll have to test that out for myself once I get it in my hands.

Still, from this initial review I’m impressed with the quality and style of this compact espresso machine.

Not to be shallow, but I’d even recommend the Café Affetto for its looks alone!

What do you think of this GE home espresso machine? Do you have any personal experience to share? Feel free to comment below with any questions or observations!

Your coffee expert
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Arne Preuss

Hi! My name is Arne. Having spent years working as a barista I'm now on a mission to bring more good coffee to the people. To that end, my team and I provide you with a broad knowledge base on the subject of coffee.

More about Arne Preuss

Hi! My name is Arne. Having spent years working as a barista I'm now on a mission to bring more good coffee to the people. To that end, my team and I provide you with a broad knowledge base on the subject of coffee.

More about Arne Preuss

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