ROK Presso Manual Espresso Maker – Review

ROK Presso Manual Espresso Maker – Review

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The ROK Presso Manual Espresso Maker is a favorite in the van, as it matches perfectly with the type of gear we think it’s well worth carrying: it’s functional, well made, it does not require electrical power, it’s nicely designed and it works GREAT! Being away from home is not an excuse to skip our coffee ritual anymore, sweeeet!

ROK Presso Animated
Ready for Takeoff!

What we Like

  • No electricity needed
  • Quiet to use
  • Rubber base to prevent the machine from sliding and to protect the counter top
  • All metal construction (except the water recipient)

What we Don’t Like

There are more variables to control (water temperature & pressure) than an electrical espresso machine, therefore it takes some practice to obtain repeatable results.

The machine is designed for regular, double shot in mind. At home we generally make lungo double shot for our Latte; that’s not really possible with the ROK. Unless the reservoir is refilled and a second extraction is performed…

What’s in the Box

  • ROK Espresso Maker
  • Portafilter
  • Splitter (Splits a double shot in two separate cups)
  • Coffee Scoop and Tamper
  • Stainless Steel Manual Milk Frother (!)
  • Spare Seals (2)
  • Storage Tin
What’s in the box

Models & Where to Buy

DISCLOSURE: This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click a product link and buy anything from the merchant (Amazon, eBay, etc), we will receive a commission fee. The price you pay remains the same, affiliate link or not.



ROK Presso GC Manual Espresso Maker. Buy on Amazon.

Pulling an Espresso Shot

We highly recommend to experiment and find a method that suits your taste. There are few variables to play with: the grind size (fine or coarse), the grind quantity and how you tamper it, the pressure applied on the ROK arms. We’re serious about our coffee, but we’re no experts… here is what works for us:

1) Use the Porlex JP-30 Manual Grinder (Buy on Amazon) to grind enough coffee to fill the Portafilter at a fine espresso setting:

Porlex JP-30 Hand Grinder
Porlex JP-30 Hand Coffee Grinder. Buy from Amazon.

2) Fill the portafilter and tamper the grounded coffee

PortaFilter-Coffee Tampered

3) Fill the water recipient on top of the ROK with boiling water. After a few seconds, put the water back in the kettle: this is to pre-heat the machine so the infusion temperature is appropriate.

Gator Kettle
Watching the water temperature rise on the built-in thermometer of the Gator Kettle. Buy on Amazon.
Boiling Water
Add boiling water
Put the water back
After about 15 seconds, put the water back into the kettle

4) Install the portafilter on the ROK.

PortaFilter Installed

5) Ensure that the arms of the machine are lowered, then fill the water recipient on top with boiling water.

Boiling water 2

6) Bring the arms fully up

Pull up

7) Then push downward to create pressure and pull the shot.

As for any espresso, the “normal” extraction time is about 20-25 seconds. Less than that and the espresso will taste under extracted. More than that, you will get bitter and astringent taste. Head over for more elaborate information!

Pull down

8) Discard the coffee residues, rinse the portafilter and clean the ROK Presso with a damp clothe.

9) Enjoy!

Here is the complete procedure on video:

Milk Frother

For a while, we used the small manual milk frother included with our ROK Presso. It’s great! It does what it is supposed to. However, milk has to be heated in a casserole (which has to be cleaned); milk temperature must be carefully monitored; the small manual frother is difficult to clean (because the interior is hard to reach). For these reasons, we moved toward the Aeroccino Milk Frother and we don’t look back:

Nespresso Aeroccino Milk Frother. Buy on Amazon.


We’ve been using the Espresso Maker since February 2017, it’s still too soon to tell. We’ll keep you updated, Subscribe to our Mailing List to be notified!


Manufacturer Website


On the go? Some friends recommended us the HandPresso: it is small, very portable and gives impressive results. Since we don’t plan on making espresso on top of the hill, we went for the ROK Presso after having seriously considered the HandPresso.

HandPresso with Outdoor Set. Buy from Amazon.
The Outdoor Set is perfect to carry the HandPresso around!

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About us



Hello! We’re Isabelle and Antoine 🙂 In 2017, we sold our house (and everything in it), quit our engineering careers, and moved into our self-built campervan. Every day is an opportunity for a new adventure... We’re chasing our dreams, and hopefully it inspires others to do the same!

Heads Up: Exclusive Deals!

Thanks to all of you, we managed to negociate group discount on these. Strength in numbers!

2 thoughts on “ROK Presso Manual Espresso Maker – Review”

  1. Hi guys:

    At home each day it’s expresso, but on the road, two AeroPress units do us fine, have you tried them yet? One nice thing about them, just like an expresso puck, the grounds in these also finish as pucks, so very easy to clean up.


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