Down into the espresso machine rabbit hole
My mother-in-law gave me a De'Longhi Nespresso Inissia machine she received for free. I know that this machine received great reviews, and while I did enjoy most of the pods I tried, I am not entirely satisfied. The shots I tried do not taste as good as the ones I get from my local coffee shop. The taste is just not as rich and full, and the shots are not hot enough.
Even if the shots were good, I wouldn't like to purchase pods, both because I want to keep buying my coffee beans from my local shop, and because of environmental concerns. From what I see, reusable pods just don't produce great results.
So I find myself looking for an espresso machine, but also for a grinder. I am leaning towards the Breville Barista Express, because I like the idea of having an all-in-one unit. However, it is currently quite expensive.
Do you have any other recommendations? If I were to have both a machine and a grinder, I would like to have small appliances -- the Breville Bambino [Plus] and...?
My main concerns would be:
1- Convenience/ease of use/easy maintenance
2- Can make shots rapidly, without too many steps
Before I received the De'Longhi, I was using a stovetop maker.