Rocket R58 Espresso Machine Review: Our Quick Review
- The Rocket R58 'In A Nutshell'
- Things to Know Before You Buy
- The Rocket Espresso R58 Review
- Unable to Commit?
- The Verdict
The Rocket espresso R 58 is an impressive machine. It is sleek, stylish and spectacular and it brings café quality espresso into your home (or small cafe).
It is a great semi-automatic espresso machine for the person who wants barista-quality espresso at a (relatively) reasonable price point.
The Rocket espresso R58 looks great, works great – and most importantly, makes great espresso...but read on to find out if this machine is the right choice for you.
The Rocket R58 'In A Nutshell'
The Rocket R58 Espresso Machine
- Quality of Brew
- Build Quality
It has a dual boiler, steam pressure consistency, you can plumb it or use the reservoir, and it’s quiet.
For these reasons, I assume it was designed for home-baristas with taste, or, for small cafes.
Unless you are going down deeper into the rabbit hole of barista-style coffee at home (and it’s a long, dark hole some days – let me tell you), this is a great machine - especially for the price.
As a semi-automatic, it is a bit easier for the newer members of the cafe-quality-coffee-at-home tribe, while still offering the opportunity for those with more knowledge to dig in deeper to the features and controls.
Plus, you get many of the features that you find in much more expensive models.
Things to Know Before You Buy
The price point for the Rocket R 58 is around $3000
For an espresso machine of this quality, that is reasonable, but let’s be real here. Reasonable is relative in this caffeine-obsessed world that you and I live in.
$3000 is still a lot of coin to drop on a coffee maker – no matter how spectacular it is.
I know that for me, buying an espresso maker is an aspirational purchase. I stretch my abilities, my budget and my partner’s patience when it’s time to upgrade.
It’s Popular...For The Right Reasons
The R 58 is a popular machine.
This may be because of its price point, which is significantly less than other machines with similar capabilities - that run somewhere around the $3,500 - $5000 mark.
Maybe it is because it falls into that sweet spot of being a semi-automatic that isn’t technically overwhelming, yet still gives you quality espresso at home (without having to hook up with a barista… not that I’ve ever done that just to get a good cup of coffee at home…).
It’s Stylish and Quiet
Made in Italy, this machine has a stainless steel finish and its sleek design makes it looks like a much higher-priced product.
It’s also a reasonably quiet machine – thanks to the built-in commercial-quality rotary pump.
This is important in my world. I get up early and the first thing I do is make coffee.
For me, the ability to NOT wake up the rest of the house is a requirement in an espresso machine.
Not To Big, Not To Small...Just Right
This isn’t a huge machine, but it ain’t small.
If you are in a 500 square foot condo in New York, Vancouver, Sydney or Paris… this machine is going to overwhelm your kitchen… hell – your whole apartment!
You need some space for it. And it’s pretty enough that you’ll want it to have a prime spot in your kitchen.
It’s Got Some Higher-End Features
This machine punches above its weight when it comes to what it can do, including that it has some features similar to its more expensive sibling, the R60v.
Things like a dual boiler and consistency of steam pressure (which translates into that smooth milk texture that makes for a great latte) and the ability to plumb this in or use the reservoir might not seem world-changing, but they could be decision-making.
The Rocket Espresso R58 Review
I am a big fan of the Rocket R 58. For the money, it is a sweet machine that looks and acts like some of the more expensive machines.
- Made in Italy
- Stainless steel
- Dual Copper Boiler
- Electronic PID
- Rotary Pump
- Has a water reservoir or can be hooked up to your water line
- External PID (could get damaged unless you're careful)
- Water reservoir is on the small side
- The water tank can be hard to remove
Here are a couple of reasons why we love the Rocket R 58:
1 - It Makes Your Kitchen Look Gooooood!
Hand-built in Milan, Italy, it is a work of art.
Rocket is known for their quality of craftsmanship – and this machine is no exception.
It’s not a huge machine, but its presence will make itself known in your kitchen.
I just like to sit and stare at it. It’s like barista-wannabe meditation. Then I make an espresso and move back into my real life.
Rocket Espresso has a great story. If you are interested, you can learn more about it here.
2 - Pre-Infusion Means Better Coffee With Less Work
I am a little obsessed with pre-infusion.
You see, at the very start of brewing during the first few seconds, the coffee is exposed to low-pressure water – this is called pre-infusion.
This is a little bit of espresso-making magic that I am learning more about.
It provides smooth extraction, resulting in exceptional body and crema. Want to know more about pre-infusion, check out this video here.
3 - Double Boilers Save Time
There are separate boilers for espresso production and steam. And you can do both simultaneously, while controlling the temperature of each boiler.
This increases efficiency and extends the life of the machine. Then it’s just about whether you want steamed milk or foam.
4 - Safety with the Frothing Wand
The steam wand is thermos-insulated, which means it gets hot, but not as quickly as more traditional and uninsulated wands.
If you have felt that painful singe on your fingers when a wand is too hot, you know how good it is to hear this.
5 - Controlling Pump Pressure = Better Espresso Taste
Dual professional gauges allow you to monitor pump pressure during extraction.
This matters. Paying attention to this – and having control over it – means that your extraction is better.
And we all know what that means: better extraction = better espresso taste.
6 - Warm Cup, Happy Heart
Maybe a cup warmer isn’t the most important feature of this machine, but it puts joy in my heart. This means that you pour your espresso into a warm cup, which keeps the crema from breaking up.
This is important for a whole bunch of reasons, including if you want to create some coffee art that can be deemed Instagram-worthy.
Interested? Check out this video here.
Something to keep in mind when you are out there comparing the Rocket R58 V2 vs V3 options: you can still get a V2, but it has been discontinued to make way for the V3.
The team at Rocket is always upgrading our coffee lives. The V3 is the most recent model.
Unless you are getting a great deal on the V2, get the V3. This is a big investment and you want it to last for years. Buy the most recent model.
Unable to Commit?
If the Rocket R 58 still haven't convinced you yet, go take a look at the other options!
You may want to consider the Profitec 700 instead or the Rocket R 60V. Read through our comparisons here:
The Profitec 700
While I think the R58 is a kick-ass machine for the price, maybe it lacks something important to you. You do have choices.
The Profitec 700 is one of those choices.
At about the same price ($3,500), comparing the rocket r58 vs profitec 700 is tough to do.
There are small differences, of course – but they are both good machines that would make a great addition to any home. The Profitec has a shot timer, which is a nice feature that the R58 is lacking.
I prefer the look of the R58 and am a Rocket fan.
I have a few coffee buddies who say that the Profitec 700 is a bit better quality overall, but I’m not convinced. When pushed, they admit that they know the brand better, so they prefer it.
I’d choose the R58.
For this comparison, it really comes down to what you like. You should check out the Profitec 700 though. You can find it here.
The Rocket R 60V
Another contender is the Rocket espresso R 60V.
It’s a beauty and a bit higher in price at approximately $5,500.
This machine is wired up and you can control it with an app (which is pretty freakin’ great in my books), but there’s a cost to that.
If my budget allowed it, I would buy the R60v, but – at about $2,000 cheaper, all that the R58 is missing are the bells and whistles of the R60.
Here’s the deal – the Rocket espresso R58 is a fine machine that any kitchen would be proud to host. If you use it right, it will serve you well for a long, long time.
It’s a sweet machine and it has some great features. With this machine, you will be able to make café quality espresso at home.
Think… no going out in the rain, the snow, when you can’t find your pants (or don’t feel like putting them on)… no smiling at people if you don’t want to, no lining up… no worrying if the barista washed their hands when they took their bathroom break … all of it gone forever.