Review: Smeg 50's Retro Style Espresso Coffee Machine

Review: Smeg 50's Retro Style Espresso Coffee Machine

We love pretty things, so when the Smeg retro came into The barista School for a Home espresso machine tutorial we were super pumped. 

Turns out that this was the extent of our joy for the day. 

As with all our reviews we want to keep this short and the the point. So here is our honest opinion on the Smeg 50's Retro Espresso Coffee Machine.

SUMMARY: Looks cute but lacks some basics.

The 50's Retro Style Espresso coffee machine is the brainchild of Italian home appliance manufacturer, Smeg. It is part of their aesthetic range and really designed to sit in a kitchen filled with shiny beautiful italian things. 

"Rounded shapes, chrome details and bright colours make any space hum with style and character, bewitching lovers of style and design." Sure ok. 

Retailing in Australia from $469 to $550 this coffee machine sits in the same league as the Breville Bambini. 

It's a lightweight and easy to move machine and does the basics of making drinkable espresso. 


  • Basket capacity of about 14 to 15 gms. 
  • Pre-programmed buttons but you can adjust water output but not pressure. 
  • Thermo block machine so it will take a while to push the water through the coil & into the group head.
  • Not sure about the tamper it seems like smeg engineers didn't understand the brief on good espresso distribution.
  • It's hard plastic coating on stainless steel - light & easy to push over when putting in portafilter.
  • Steam wand lever is a bit strange as is the wand. It gives frothy milk as opposed to texture. Great for 90’s caps but not so good for a beautiful microfoam. 
  • Water is easy to fill. It's about 1lt. 

    The Smeg 50's Retro is perfect If your making one espresso a week. If you just need a coffee and don't care about milk texture but do care about how beautiful your kitchen looks and if your fridge, kettle and toaster match your coffee machine than buy this now. 

    NOTE: We have tried two of these machines. Both of which were brought into us by their owners. One was brand new just out of the box and one was 4 months old. 


    Want to know how to use your home machine? Book into our Home Espresso Machine Tutorials.