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Bialetti Brikka vs. Moka Express Comparative Test & Review. Does Brikka make real espresso as pump espresso machines do?

Comments: 38↓ specifications & manual ↓

Most of Bialetti’s stove-top coffee makers (aka moka pots) have similar construction and varies only by design and materials. There are classic aluminium models like Moka Express that Bialetti’s factory in Italy has been producing with no changes since 1933. There is also a Bialetti Junior – same design and construction, but made in China and, thus, cheaper. There are many stainless steel versions: cone-shaped Venus or stylish Musa. And many more models including colorful Fiametta series. All of them have the same brewing system.

Bialetti Brikka TestedOne well-known model that stands apart is Bialetti Mukka (here it is at Amazon), which is designed to make cappuccino. However, there is one more model – less known Bialetti Brikka. Despite the fact that it looks very similar to other aluminium moka pots by Bialetti, it’s unique because of the pressure valve, that changes the brewing process.

Brikka comes in 2 versions: for 2 cups (👉 see @ amazon) and for 4 cups (👉 see @ amazon). It’s 2 Oz and 4 Oz respectively – see measurements below.

Does Bialetti Brikka really make different coffee if compared to the classic Moka Express?

When I first met Brikka coffee maker it was not obvious to me that it makes different coffee than my usual travel companion (Moka Express for 2 cups) does. However first tests proved that even if the difference is not dramatic, it is still big enough to place the Brikka on the following chart closer to the real espresso machine:


Surely Brikka doesn’t make real espresso like a 15-bar pump espresso machine does. However, the result is much more similar to espresso than on any ordinary moka pot. That’s why now the Bialetti Brikka Elite is a compact coffee maker that I take with me while travelling. Officially, since 2014 🙂

Check price difference @ Amazon:
Bialetti Brikka vs Bialetti Moka Express

I will summarise key differences between Moka Express and Brikka:

  • The crema. Brikka makes richer coffee foam. This is quite obvious if you saw some photos on the Web or read other reviews.
  • The coffee is a bit stronger. Quite obvious too, however, the difference is not dramatic, Brikka gives just a bit more caffeine than Moka Express does.
  • The taste! This one is not obvious at all (was not obvious to me, at least), however, it’s probably the most effective difference.

When you try coffee made on Moka Express (just after tasting Brikka’s one) you understand that Moka Express gives more watery taste, less rich. Sometimes even more bitter, overextracted flavor.

Bialetto Briikka vs Moka Express (crema test)

Even the ground coffee/water ratio is similar to real espresso. My measurements show that the Brikka for 2 cups is designed to brew 60ml (2 Oz) of coffee using 15 g of ground coffee.

Yes, I know that often on Amazon it is written to be 3 Oz. However, it’s a mistake. Lower bowl indeed can fit even more water (up to 100 ml/3 Oz), however, the special “H2O” level inside Brikka shows, that it is recommended to use 65-70 ml of water – output is slightly smaller because ground coffee absorbs some water. Classic moka pots use less coffee and more water.

2-cup 👉 see @ amazon 4-cup 👉 see @ amazon
Water 60 ml/2 Oz 120 ml /4 Oz
Coffee 15 g/0.53 ounces 30 g/1 ounce
Item model numbers 6188, 6782 (black bottom) 6184, 6784 (black bottom)
Height 17 cm/6.7 in 21.5 cm/8.5 in

Bialetti Brikka Ground Coffee Filter Capacity

However, when the third cup is tested (espresso shot made on a classic pump espresso machine, in my case it was Delonghi EC155M), then you realise that Brikka doesn’t make espresso. It makes strong espresso-alike coffee with rich crema and taste, but it cannot compete with pump machines.

Update. The speed of brewing

I completely forget to mention one more difference between Moka and Brikka. The later one is faster. I tested equal-sized models (both for 2 cups) on the same stove. In case of the Brikka it takes 2 minutes 36 seconds to make coffee, while Moka Express needs 3 minutes 50 seconds.

Brikka vs Moka Express

Why some other reviewers say the difference between Moka Express and Brikka is undistinguished?

Common problems with Brikka is possible reasons. Bialetti’s quality control system is not superb (no suprise for me since years ago we had a Fiat in our family). In case of Moka Express or any other ordinary moka pot the construction is simplier and frequent problems are widely troubleshooted. In case of Brikka the are more parts that could be defected and due to lack of information people couldn’t understand that their Brikka is defective.

The most widespread example is a defective funnel. Sometimes it has a tiny hole on the side where the punch is:

Defective Funnel of Bialetti Brikka


This leads to low pressure (because water partly goes back to the lower reservoir) and no (or not much) crema. In Bialetti they probably know about this problem, because a funnel for Brikka as a spare part has different construction: without punches and therefore without risk of getting a hole. However new Brikka moka pots come with old funnel, which can be defected (or can be not, the risk is not high, maybe 1 out of 100).

New funnles are sold on Amazon, however wider available funnels for Moka Express can be used as well. For example, a funnel for Moka Express for 6-cup can be fit into Brikka for 2 cups (as reported in this review).

Pressure/Crema Valve construction and How to Clean It

The method that Bialetti used in Brikka is not innovative. Manufacturers of pump espresso machines use it since 1990s – they discovered that if they will limit the pressure on the exit of the portafilter, then the espresso will have full taste and crema on top. This was particularly important for home users who use cheap preground coffee and do no tamp coffee well; on the espresso makers with pressure valves thay still can get a decent shot of espresso.


Today 99,9% home espresso machines come with pressure valve (aka crema filters). The only exception I know is the Delonghi EC145 and EC146.

Bialetti implimented the same idea. However in case of a moka pot where the water/coffee goes upward, the construction of pressure valve could be simplier than on espresso machine (where water goes through ground coffee downwards).

In Brikka it’s just a heavy metal lid on the exit of the upper funnel. When the pressure is low, the water can’t lift it. But as soon as pressure rises, the heavy lid moves up and let the coffee out:

Bialetti Brikka Valve for Crema

You should clean this valve system time after time. How to open/unscrew Brikka’s upper valve? I made step-by-step photos for you:

How to unscrew (open) upper pressure valve on Bialetti Brikka (step by step photos)

Spare parts for Brikka (current generation *)

  • New aluminium replacement funnel part numbers:
  • Repair Kit (3 Gaskets and 1 Filter Plate) part number:
  • Bialetti does not produce handles and pressure valves as spare parts.

*  Difference between “new” and “old” design is shown below:

Bialetti Brikka Old and New model

I NEED your opinion. Please rate my review:

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (68 votes, average: 4.82 out of 5)


Bialetti Brikka/Brikka Elite Coffee Machine Specifications:

Download manual: Download pdf manual
Machine type: Moka pot (stove-top coffee maker)
Width х Deep х Height: With handle: 14cm x 10cm x 17 cm (5.5 x 3.9 x 6.7 in)
Coffee used: Ground coffee
Grinder: No
Brewing group: Aluminium funnel (part number 0800116 for 2 cups, 0800117 for 4 cups)
Heater: Any external heater except induction stove/microwave
Max pressure: Approx. 2.3 bar as reported by samuellaw178 @
Water container: Recommended amount of water 60-70ml
Bean container: 15 g
Waste container: No
Cappuccinatore: No
Peculiar properties: Two version: for 2 cups (0006188) and for 4 cups (0006184). Made in Romania.

Author: Dmitriy Yurchenko


Have any questions? Please ask in comments below!

Have you bought this coffee machine? Leave a review!


  1. Do they make bigger Brikka pots? 3 oz it isn’t much coffee…


    28 May 18 at 12:59 am


    • Only 2 cup and 4 cup versions.

      3 oz in amazon description of 2-cup Brikka isn’t correct. You can fit 3 oz in the lower bowl, however the instruction clearly says to use only 60 ml (~2 oz). There is a special measuring mark in the upper bowl of the new Brikka Elite. The correct ratio of water and steam gurantess that the crema filter will work as it should. The 4-cup Brikka respectively will give you 4 oz of coffee.


      29 May 18 at 9:45 am


    • Bigger stovetops are bad, the coffee is tasting burned when it is so long time on stove. So, You have to make serveral pots with this small pot.

      Ocku K

      18 Dec 18 at 9:56 am


      • Check youtube, you need to use hot water to make it faster and taste will be less bitter..


        5 Sep 20 at 9:35 pm


  2. I am curious are there any actual differences between the elite and the one you have labeled “first generation”?

    Note that your “first generation” is actually the second generation, as there was an earlier model that had a plastic covering where the current window is, lacked the internal ledge indicating the appropriate amount of water (instead it shipped with a plastic measuring cup), and used an extra gasket internally for the funnel. I have both of these but have not seen the elite.


    18 Aug 18 at 5:34 am


    • Thank you for the correction, Len! Probably I’m too young to remember the generation Zero 🙂 I saw the Brikka with a second rubber gasket on youtube, by the way, and was curious. However, it was ordinary Brikka (without plastic covering on top as you describe).

      Elite has a slightly (very slightly – 1 mm or less) different funnel diameter. Everyhing else looks the same for me.


      19 Aug 18 at 8:30 am


    • I have the original. Have had it for years, and love it. Using pre-ground coffee (Illy or others made for Moka pots), I get great crema, using two slightly rounded scoops of coffee, tapping the basket to make sure it’s level and the coffee has “settled” a bit. I do not tamp at all, nor do I fill the basket all the way to the top.

      Today, I tried grinding my own coffee with a new hand grinder. Same (approx) grind as my Bustelo coffee, same quantity, and no crema. Sigh. Back to experimenting, lol.

      John P

      7 Sep 19 at 6:32 pm


  3. I have the generation zero with the knob in the middle of the lid. As the funnel or its gasket (or both) is different, can I get replacements for these? Thanks!

    Dave B

    13 Sep 18 at 7:55 pm


  4. Please help to choose between elite and regular brikka – is the problem with the holes in the funnel is not present in elite version?
    Thank you!


    23 Nov 18 at 5:13 pm


    • Generally, construction is identical, just small changes in design. I don’t have any statistics how much defected funnels are installed on brikka and brikka elite. I would choose the cheapest 😉


      23 Nov 18 at 5:52 pm


      • P. S. I’m quite sure that when you see in one shop “Brikka” and in other shop “Brikka Elite” it’s really two different versions. Most shops in most countries sell current version, some of them may forget to rename it (since the “Elite” prefix is not written on the box or on the coffee makers itself).


        23 Nov 18 at 5:57 pm


  5. Great info here… thank u. New to Brikka, but I have a Moka pot that I use regularly. I just got a Brikka and it has blown up on my stove twice…following all I have seen in manual and on net– 2 oz water marking in upper chamber, med heat, every part is clean and drains water correctly when tested (like the pressure should drive it when heating), grind is not too fine, not tamping coffee, seal is clean and in good shape, pressure release in bottom chamber can be pushed out so not clogged, no holes in filter as u describe above… I’m lucky I’m not blind–I didn’t know they did this until I started researching–I could have been looking down at pot. Never a problem with my Moka pot that is another brand. Any suggestions?


    6 Jan 19 at 9:03 am


    • Hi, Sammy! What exatcly do you mean by “blow up”?

      The only suggestion I have so far (but please let me know what exatcly happens) is if the coffee flushs like fountain out of the Brikka. In this case it may be the pressure valve – it should be made of two parts (on is screwed into another, the lower part is keeping the valve on its place). Without the lower part of if the lower part isn’t connected to the upper one – than the coffee will fountain…

      Anyway, please describe your issue in more details.


      6 Jan 19 at 4:40 pm


  6. I have the original Brikka (has an extra rubber gasket around the perimeter of the funnel, as well as a clear plastic view window in the lid). I also have the newer, next version Brikka (but not the Elite). There is a very slight difference in capacity when comparing the two funnels… marginal, but there. Both perform admirably after many years of daily use. (Both are 2-cup models, for optimum brew.) I always use less water than the suggested 80 ml., and this helps to make the brew more espresso-like in flavour & mouthfeel, and also results in more crema— as there is more room for more steam pressure to build in the lower chamber… at least, that is my guess. Using 56 ml of water gives the most espresso like result, but I often brew with 70 ml for a bit more to drink. Lots of experimenting can give you the best “recipe” for technique, with exceptional results. Never had any problems with explosions or leakages, etc… but I do think people don’t usually make the brew in a way that achieves the best result. There should never be bitter or sour tastes, never any burnt taste. If there are any off-putting tastes, you are not making it right. Take the same care and preparation of the “puck” as you would for espresso if you want remarkable results. (Of course, fresh roasted coffee beans, and an espresso level grinder— be it manual or electric—will greatly improve the results.


    7 Jan 19 at 1:38 pm


  7. Hello, this would be my third purchase of a Bialetti. I have the Mokas. I thought they would give me the crema but I now discovered I would need the Brikka. I did not realize there was an option for the crema.

    So I get the right one this time. Can you please clarify.
    1. by cups you mean shots of espresso?
    2. I’m guessing I need the 4 cups (makes 4 shots)?
    3. I’d like the all silver no black. I don’t seem to find it. Can you direct me?
    Thank you.

    Renee Maldonado

    15 Aug 19 at 4:45 am


    • Hi, Renee.

      1. For Brikka – yes. 1 cup = 30 ml / 1 fl oz (for other mokas 1 cup = 40 ml). This means that 2 cup Brikka gives 60ml (two classic espresso shots), 4 cups gives 120 ml.

      2. You know better 🙂

      3. As far as I know Bialetti know – since 2019 – produces only black bottom versions, so you can find the all silver Brikka only in old stocks. Old fully silver models had numeric code 6188 (0006188) for 2 cups and 6184 (0006184) for 4 cups. Prosucts with such model numbers are still available on Amazon (here and here ). However, I’m not sure that the seller just forget to update photos and titles.


      15 Aug 19 at 7:59 pm


    • Hi, Renee.

      1)I used 1st gen Brikka 2-cup. Now, I have been using the 2nd gen Brikka 2-cup for more than a year 3 times a day, all year. In my early days, I was filling it up to the H2O level, later 1 mm higher , then 3 mm, and now 10 mm higher than the H2O level. H2O level is 100 ml. When I pass this level by 10mm, I get min 100 ml coffee in the cup and leave the last 5-10 ml sour coffee in the upper reservoir.

      One more thing, I fill the coffee basket (funnel) up to 60%. The coffee probably weighs 10-12 gr which is fine for me.

      2) If you drink alone, 2-cup Brikka is fine. Actually I bought a 4-cup Brikka with the same attitude in mind too. However It does not make the same coffe as 2-cup does. Making it big with the same ratio doesn’t give same results. The physics of Brikka walks on a thin line.

      By the way if you don’t use 4-cup Brikka regularly, it corrodes fast.

      Sorry for the metrics. 🙂


      24 Aug 19 at 9:52 pm


      • I’ve been using my original Brikka for many years. No signs of corrosion. For years, I cleaned it only with hot water and paper towel. Never soap. Recently, I scrubbed it with a paste of salt and water. Now, it’s shiny again. Still works exactly the same.

        It should not corrode….

        John P

        7 Sep 19 at 6:35 pm


  8. I have a Brikka model and I’m very happy with it.
    Have you tested whether you get better results when you put very hot water inside? (This is what James Hoffman recommends) and does that depend on the thickness of the grind or on whether it’s a dark or medium roast?
    Also, do you use a small/medium or high flame under the Brikka and does that depend on whether it’s a medium or dark roast?
    Thank you.

    A. T.

    30 Sep 19 at 10:13 am


    • I have watched that James Hoffman’s video which is on ChefSteps channel too. That video made me buy my moka pots. For the method James presented in the video, pre-heated water is only for Moka Express, not Brikka. Please watch this wonderful video for your reference.

      Plus, I own both Moka Express and Brikka (2019). For Brikka, cold water does make great coffee!

      Kyusang Lee

      4 Oct 19 at 2:08 pm


  9. Excellent article on Brikka. However what does it mean by 2-cup Brikka does not make same coffee as 4-cup Brikka?

    I read somewhere people saying 2-cup model works better and gives better crema than 4-cup, is it true?

    And can i follow you to just fill the basket 60% full for the 4-cup model as well? Because i find the 4-cup model has an enormous basket and to fill it full as product recommendation uses a lot of coffee powder just to extract very small amount of thick liquid. I do not need such thick coffee and is for only 1 person drinking. If i fill only 60% will the coffee shoots out fine automatically without me assisting to lift the valve and produces crema, instead of leaking from the bottom chamber?

    What do you think if i pour 2nd time with hot water and cook the coffee again just to extract maximum the coffee powder? Adding this brown water is better than diluting the first extracted expresso with plain water.

    I value as much opinions and wisdom from many people possible. Thank you!


    28 Nov 19 at 8:02 am


  10. Using hot or cold water will give a different taste. As far as the brewing goes hot water makes it brew faster.
    Taste is subjective. You may like Brikka made with cold water as per the direction or hot water as many object to.
    Folks, we are not making nitroglycerin. If you make something you do not like the taste, pour it down the sink or around your roses. If you grind store shelf Folgers to moka and YOU like it, its good coffee.
    Buy one and experiment. I have both the 2 and 4 cup makers. They have both made reall great coffee’s. And their fair share of sink shots. But thats OK. All I lost was a few cents of coffee some water and a little time. But I learned how not to do it.
    One varible you can have control over the Brikka and moka pots is the grind. Since you do not want to tamp a finer grind gives a different taste as it takes longer for the water to extract the coffee. A courser grind allows less time and again a different taste.
    Investing in coffee stuff, spend more on a good grinder that can be set for small changes in grind size. Or buy a cheap one and learn what the changes in the grind sizes the grinder you have does.
    But have fun with coffee. It ain’t gonna blow up on you.

    Curtis Stewart

    8 Dec 19 at 5:07 pm


  11. Hello,
    The consensus is that the 2 cups brews better than the 4 one?
    I would love to know people’s opinions and if you have any other secrets to share for the best recipe.


    25 Dec 19 at 5:55 am


  12. Hi, thanks for the detailed review. May I ask if the Brikka is suitable for induction heat stove? Thanks in advanced, Joseph

    Joseph Au

    28 Dec 19 at 4:29 pm


    • No, it’s made of alumunium, which will not “work” on the indiction hob unless you use diffuser plate like this one


      28 Dec 19 at 4:53 pm


  13. Hi
    I have a 1st generation Bialetti Brikka (4 cups). The lid has a round opening roughly 4cm in diameter. When making coffee, instead of it “dripping” from the valve intoit spurts aggressively into and out of the upper part, wasting out of the opening on the lid and making a big mess on the stove. Of the froth on the coffee there is also no sign. Is this supposed to happen? Any idea how I go about fixing it?
    Many thanks


    1 Jan 20 at 9:36 am


    • Sorry, I didn’t test the first generation personally. However, any Brikka indeed should “spurt” rather than “drip”. In the same time it definetely shouldn’t sprut on your stove. It seems that (just an assumption) you have a higher pressure than needed, but I have no idea why…


      15 Jan 20 at 11:45 am


    • Hi Charl,

      I suppose you are using muddy (oily, etc) coffee, probably from Central America.

      Coarser grids may solve this problem.


      17 Dec 20 at 1:23 pm


  14. Thanks a lot for such detailed comparison. It was quite useful.
    If I make caffe for only one person, would Brikka works ? (I mean, with half of water and half of coffee)

    Rui Alves

    3 Jan 20 at 9:18 am


    • It will work with half of water and half of coffee, but the hot water/steam/coffee ratio and all the principles would be violated => hotter coffee, stronger steam, more pressure => overexctracted bitter taste.


      15 Jan 20 at 11:38 am


  15. Great content.
    Getting confused with all the info out there, and yours seems good.
    Want a tasry latte, big cup (330ml size)
    2 or 3 Cup Moka or 2 Cup Brikka?
    Cost difference is signifcant
    Am use to using larger Moka


    12 May 20 at 11:15 pm


    • I would prefer brikka. Because it makes stronger coffee, closer to real espresso. Ordinary 2 or 3 cup moka express may make too weak coffee for such a large (330ml) latte.


      13 May 20 at 8:21 am


      • thanks – appreciated, take care!


        13 May 20 at 8:22 am


  16. does anyone know where i can get spare parts for the brikka? I had a little accident and need a new gasket and handle.


    15 May 20 at 10:04 pm


    • replacment handles have a part numers 0800217 (2cup) and 0800218 (4cup)
      gaskets – 0800013 (2cup brikka) and 0800014 (4cup).
      they are NOT the same as ordinary mokas’ parts
      They sell it even on amazon


      16 May 20 at 8:36 am


  17. Brikka works just fine – tasy coffee latte. Thanks once more


    16 May 20 at 7:46 pm


  18. Thank you for a well-written and informative description. Based upon your write-up I will now order a Brikka. Bialetti should pay you a commission.

    EJ Acosta

    16 May 20 at 11:50 pm


  19. Very well-explained. But I have this confusion that do we get a good shot of espresso if we use Bialeti’s Moka Induction Stove top Stovetop Espresso Coffee Maker?
    The only thing which I am skeptical while buying is that it is a gas stove version.
    Please suggest

    Varssha Tulshiyani

    27 Jul 20 at 4:57 pm


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