Gaggia Carezza Deluxe vs Classic Pro: Which Is Best For You?

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If you’re on the hunt for an entry-level espresso machine, let me introduce you to two of my personal favorites: the Gaggia Carezza Deluxe vs Classic Pro. After diving deep into the pros and cons of both, I can confidently say that the Gaggia Classic Pro steals the spotlight.

The Classic Pro wins my heart with its robust build, generous capacity, commercial-grade steam wand, and impeccable espresso extraction capabilities.

Don’t dismiss the Carezza Deluxe just yet. While it may come in as the runner-up, it’s still a solid contender. I was particularly impressed by its timeless design, user-friendly interface, and rapid heating capabilities. If you’re a newbie in search of a machine that’s both reliable and budget-friendly, I wholeheartedly recommend giving this one some serious consideration.

Gaggia Carezza Deluxe vs Classic Pro: Specs & Features Comparison Chart

Image
The Winner
Gaggia RI9380/46 Classic Evo Pro, Small, Brushed Stainless Steel
The Runner-up (#2)
Gaggia Carezza De Luxe Espresso Machine, 47oz, Silver
Model
Gaggia Classic Pro RI9380/46
Gaggia Carezza De LUXE RI8525/01
Dimensions (LxWxH)
9.5 x 8 x 14.2 Inches
11 x 8.3 x 11.8 Inches
Material
Stainless Steel
Plastic
Capacity
2.1 Liters
1.3 Liters
Color
Brushed Stainless Steel
Silver
Weight
20 Pounds
13.2 Pounds
Watt/ Volt
1425W/ 110V-120V
1300W/ 110V-120V
Heating time
30 seconds
1 minute
Bottomless portafilter
Optional
No
Steam tip hole count
2
1
Frother type
Commercial wand
Pannarello wand
Type of control
Rocker switch
Push button
Interface
New rocker buttons + indicator lights
Analogic
Boiler configuration
Single-boiler/Dual-use
Single-boiler/Dual-use
Automatic stand-by
Pump pressure
15 bar
15 bar
What I Like
Price
$449.00
$299.00
The Winner
Image
Gaggia RI9380/46 Classic Evo Pro, Small, Brushed Stainless Steel
Model
Gaggia Classic Pro RI9380/46
Dimensions (LxWxH)
9.5 x 8 x 14.2 Inches
Material
Stainless Steel
Capacity
2.1 Liters
Color
Brushed Stainless Steel
Weight
20 Pounds
Watt/ Volt
1425W/ 110V-120V
Heating time
30 seconds
Bottomless portafilter
Optional
Steam tip hole count
2
Frother type
Commercial wand
Type of control
Rocker switch
Interface
New rocker buttons + indicator lights
Boiler configuration
Single-boiler/Dual-use
Automatic stand-by
Pump pressure
15 bar
What I Like
Price
$449.00
More Info
The Runner-up (#2)
Image
Gaggia Carezza De Luxe Espresso Machine, 47oz, Silver
Model
Gaggia Carezza De LUXE RI8525/01
Dimensions (LxWxH)
11 x 8.3 x 11.8 Inches
Material
Plastic
Capacity
1.3 Liters
Color
Silver
Weight
13.2 Pounds
Watt/ Volt
1300W/ 110V-120V
Heating time
1 minute
Bottomless portafilter
No
Steam tip hole count
1
Frother type
Pannarello wand
Type of control
Push button
Interface
Analogic
Boiler configuration
Single-boiler/Dual-use
Automatic stand-by
Pump pressure
15 bar
What I Like
Price
$299.00
More Info

Last update on 2024-06-12 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Gaggia Carezza Deluxe vs Classic Pro: Differences

After a thorough evaluation of all the features, it’s evident that the Classic Pro truly shines when it comes to its design, capacity, brewing performance, and the added bonus of a steam wand. Let me break down the key aspects that led to the Classic Pro’s convincing 3-0 victory over the Carezza Deluxe.

Coffee Flavor & Brewing System 

The Winner: Gaggia Classic Pro

Neither the Gaggia Carezza Deluxe nor the Classic Pro fall into the “bean-to-cup” category, which means they demand a more hands-on approach to brewing. You’ll need to take charge of tasks like grinding, dosing, and tamping, which might initially pose a learning curve, especially for newcomers to the world of espresso making. However, I can assure you that the effort pays off handsomely, as it leads to the creation of a truly exceptional espresso, rivaling the quality you’d find in your favorite café.

It’s important to highlight that both of these machines lack a built-in grinder, which means you’ll need to invest in a separate grinder for your coffee preparation. Personally, I don’t mind this additional step because I recognize the crucial role that coffee grounds play in determining the overall quality of my brew.

When it comes to choosing a grinder, I’ve narrowed it down to two outstanding options: the Breville Smart Grinder Pro, which is perfect for those looking to be budget-conscious, and the Baratza Sette 270, a more professional choice for serious coffee enthusiasts.

However, if you’d rather skip the grinder purchase or find yourself in need of a quick cup of coffee during a busy morning, both of these machines offer convenient alternatives. You can easily use pre-ground coffee or ESE pods, giving you a hassle-free coffee-making experience that suits your time constraints and preferences.

Portafilter And Filter Basket

Gaggia Carezza Deluxe Gaggia Classic Pro 
Portafilter MaterialStainless Steel + Plastic Chrome Plated Brass
Portafilter Diameter53 mm58 mm
Filter Basket TypePressurizedCommercial Style or Non-pressurized + Pressurized

The portafilter on the Gaggia Carezza Deluxe is a 53mm pressurized one, and it includes some plastic components. Personally, I find it a bit light and perhaps on the cheaper side in terms of feel. On the other hand, the Gaggia Classic Pro’s 58mm chrome-plated brass portafilter really appeals to me. It has a sturdy and comfortable feel, and I can sense its higher quality just by handling it.

Both machines come equipped with the capability to brew using pressurized filter baskets, which is the only type available with the Carezza. This feature is incredibly user-friendly and hassle-free, making it a great option for beginners. It essentially takes the guesswork out of tamping and is more forgiving when it comes to the grind consistency of the coffee. That said, through my own experience, I’ve found that a light tamp and ensuring a consistent grind can notably enhance the quality of my espresso shots.

Gaggia Carezza Deluxe's pressurized filter basket
Gaggia Carezza Deluxe’s pressurized filter basket

Let’s take a closer look at the pressurized filter basket of the Gaggia Carezza Deluxe. It boasts a unique design, resembling a standard commercial filter basket (often referred to as a non-pressurized one), complete with multiple holes in its walls. In contrast, the pressurized filter basket of the Classic Prosimplifies things with just one tiny hole at the bottom, similar to many other espresso machines.

As you gain more experience and refine your espresso brewing skills, it’s natural to aspire to a more professional and controlled process that allows you to fine-tune the quality of your coffee. This is where the Gaggia Classic Pro truly shines. It offers a regular standard non-pressurized filter basket option, providing you with the flexibility and control that the Carezza lacks.

Armed with that non-pressurized filter basket, a quality grinder, and a bit of skill, you can truly unlock the ability to craft superior espresso. This setup allows for the creation of excellent shots that simply aren’t achievable with a pressurized basket. Reflecting on my own experiences, I’ve found that the Classic Pro has the potential to produce a better espresso compared to the Carezza.

Boiler

From the get-go, I didn’t have high expectations of these machines featuring dual boilers, given their classification as affordable entry-level models. As expected, they both rely on a single boiler for their heating system. Consequently, you can’t simultaneously brew espresso and froth milk. The machine needs to heat up to steam temperature before you can start texturing the milk, a process that typically takes less than 1 minute.

The Gaggia Classic Pro is advertised with a remarkable 5-minute brewing time, considering it doesn’t use a thermocoil or thermoblock boiler. However, in my experience, I prefer to give it at least 10 minutes to warm up. The aluminum boiler it uses, while efficient, is prone to corrosion.

In contrast, the Gaggia Carezza Deluxe takes approximately 40 seconds to 1 minute to get ready for brewing and just around 30 seconds to reach steaming temperature. It has aluminum boilers lined with stainless steel, allowing for swift heating and corrosion resistance. I often use this brief wait time to grind and tamp the coffee, making my morning routine more efficient.

Pre-infusion 

I was really impressed to learn that the Gaggia Carezza Deluxe, even as an entry-level machine, includes pre-infusion – a feature usually found in higher-end models. This process wets the coffee grounds before brewing, enhancing the overall flavor. It’s exciting to see such an advanced feature in a basic machine.

On the other hand, the Gaggia Classic Pro doesn’t offer pre-infusion. I’ve seen some espresso enthusiasts modify their machines to include it, but that’s a risky move and not something I’m comfortable trying.

To achieve pre-infusion without modifying my machine, I found a clever method. I place a spare cup under the steam wand, with the portafilter in place. Then, I slightly open the steam knob and quickly press the brew switch. This reroutes some water to the steam wand for a brief 5-second pre-infusion. After that, I close the steam knob to continue the normal extraction. It’s a simple yet effective workaround.

Design & Usability 

The Winner: Gaggia Classic Pro

Dimensions, Weight & Build Quality

Gaggia Carezza DeluxeGaggia Classic Pro
Dimensions (W x H x D)11 x 12.75 x 12.5 in8 x 14.2 x 9.5 in
Weight 13.2 lbs20 lbs
Frame MaterialPlastic + SteelSteel


Both the Gaggia Carezza Deluxe and Classic Pro are great for small spaces, easily fitting under my kitchen cabinets. They’re surprisingly light, with the Carezza at 13.2 lbs and the Classic Pro at 20 lbs, so moving them around if needed is a breeze. Though, I reckon most people would just set them up in one spot and not move them much.

What really stands out for me is the Carezza Deluxe’s charming retro Italian look. But I did notice it’s mostly plastic, which makes it lighter. This means I sometimes have to steady the machine when attaching or detaching the portafilter, but it’s a small trade-off for the design.

Holding the Gaggia Carezza Deluxe to insert the portafilter
Holding the Gaggia Carezza Deluxe to insert the portafilter

On the flip side, the Gaggia Classic Pro strikes a harmonious blend of a sleek, minimalist design with a touch of modernity, all while retaining a hint of Italian art deco charm. It proudly showcases an all-metal housing, giving it a substantial and slightly weighty feel compared to its rivals. However, this durability and long-lasting build are aspects I genuinely appreciate.

Water Tank

The Gaggia Carezza Deluxe holds 1.4 liters, which sounds ample, but in my two-coffee-enthusiast household, where we each have a couple of cups every morning, I found myself frequently running low on water. A lot of it gets used up in the machine’s auto-rinse and for a blank shot to warm up the portafilter. To save water, I turned off the rinse mode with a quick button press, although it meant missing out on preheating the portafilter.

It’s handy that the water reservoir slides out from the front for refilling, but it’s a bit of a hassle as I always have to remove the drip tray to fill it up. Plus, the tank has this clear window to check the water level, but honestly, unless the machine is in a well-lit spot, it’s pretty hard to see how much water is left in there.

Gaggia Classic Pro's water tank
Gaggia Classic Pro’s water tank

The Gaggia Classic Pro’s water tank is quite generous, holding up to 2.1 liters. I’ve found myself needing to refill it far less frequently compared to the Carezza. What’s even better is how easy it is to fill the tank on the Classic Pro. You have options – you can either directly fill it by removing the drip tray or simply pop the lid and fill it from the top.

At first, I thought the clear plastic tank would make it a breeze to check the water level. But I was a bit let down when I realized it’s actually tinted plastic, and its placement behind the brew group inside the machine makes it quite challenging to see how much water is left.

Milk System

The winner: Gaggia Classic Pro


For those who love milk-based drinks like cappuccinos and lattes, both Gaggia machines have got you covered with their built-in milk frothers.

The Carezza Deluxe features a Pannarello steam wand, which is great for creating smooth, even milk foam. It’s pretty user-friendly, so you don’t need to be a pro barista to whip up some decent latte art.

On the other hand, the Classic Pro comes with a commercial steam wand that’s slimmer and more refined. This wand offers more control over steaming and frothing the milk and can create loads of microfoam – something you might not achieve with a traditional wand. There’s a bit of a learning curve, though. It took me some time to get the hang of it, but once I did, the quality of the foam it produces for my drinks was well worth the effort.

Quick Rundown Of The Gaggia Classic Pro

Sale
Gaggia RI9380/46 Classic Evo Pro, Small, Brushed Stainless Steel
  • Solid Steel Housing, Made in Italy
  • 9 Bar Espresso Extractions
  • Stainless Steel 58mm Commercial Portafilter
  • Commercial Three Way Solenoid Valve
  • Commercial Steam Wand

Last update on 2024-06-12 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Pros
  • Durable construction
  • Professional steam wand
  • Upgrade boiler for manual and smooth control
  • A large 72 oz water tank
  • With a 3-way solenoid valve, the coffee puck is dry and easy to discard
Cons
  • No auto shut-off function

Quick Rundown Of The Gaggia Carezza Deluxe

Gaggia Carezza De Luxe Espresso Machine, 47oz, Silver
  • Note: 1)Too coarse a grind, too little coffee, or insufficiently tamping the grounds before brewing can all lead to inadequate pressure for a proper brew. 2)It is important to note that the amount of espresso extracted will vary depending on the grind size and amount and reprogramming may be needed when the size and amount are adjusted
  • FROTHING FOR MILK BEVERAGES: Pannarello wand frothing for cappuccinos & lattes. Wand doubles as a hot water dispenser for Americanos & tea
  • Brewing features: pressurized porta filter brews both ground Coffee and ESE pods. Pre-infusion function pre-wets grounds before brewing for rich, even extraction
  • AUTOMATIC POWER DOWN: The Carezze will power down after 9 minutes of inactivity to save energy
  • FRONT LOADED WATER RESERVOIR: Features a 47oz capacity and pulls out from the front of the machine, water level is visible, and the reservoir is compatible with the Mavea Inteza water filter system

Last update on 2024-06-12 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Pros
  • Compact and portable design
  • Fairly quick heat up
  • Balanced and consistent espresso extraction
  • Auto shut-off function
  • Crema Perfetta Portafilter to brew when the pressure reaches the industry standard
Cons
  • Too much plastic
  • Small water tank

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