Best Espresso Shot Mirror To Watch Your Coffee Extraction

 Last Updated May 16, 2024

If you have a bottomless portafilter, you know why an espresso shot mirror is handy to have. You want to enjoy watching your espresso extraction without wrecking your neck or back! You can only crouch so much! That's why I'm listing the best espresso shot mirror for your espresso machine. 

Espresso shot mirror

My normcore espresso shot mirror I use with my machine.

I'll start off with my top recommendations, before explaining the benefits of shot mirrors and my experiences with them.

Best espresso shot mirrors

I like the Normcore mirror as it's well built, has a strong magnet with a heavy base to latch onto your machine, and has a good range of motion to view your espresso extraction. This is also the mirror I personally use at home.

If you have wood accents on your espresso machine or accessories, then you should get a mirror that compliments it. I like this one from Peritory as it's well made, has a strong magnet, and a nice wooden design.

Budget Coffee Mirror

This magnet mirror from Pavant is a good alternative to the Normcore above, as it does the same job at a cheaper price. A mirror is a mirror after all. It's design is just a little more simple and has a longer base, so keep this in mind if you have a smaller machine.

Why do you need an espresso shot mirror?

Let's be honest with ourselves. 

An espresso shot mirror is not necessary to make good coffee.

However, it's a nice convenience to have -  especially if you're an older or taller barista like myself.

When you use a naked portafilter, you want to see how your shot is extracting to make sure you've done your puck prep properly. A coffee shot mirror makes this a little easier as you don't have to bend over to watch your shot.

It's a simple tool designed to solve a single issue. 

Mirror view of portafilter

No more bending over to watch your portafilter basket.

Espresso mirror showing extraction

POV view of me making an espresso. I can watch the whole shot to see where I went right or wrong with my puck prep.

So whether or not it's worth it for you depends on how much of an issue bending over is. 

As I'm 6'2 (189cm) and in my 30s, I've found that this mirror has been a nice convenience. I also no longer get odd looks from my wife on why I'm bending over when making coffee - so that's a plus!

What to look out for when buying a coffee shot mirror?

Coffee mirrors are a simple tool. There are four main things you need to look out for when buying one. 

Espresso machine with shot mirror

My black mirror matches my Appartamento nicely.

  • Size: you want to make sure you get a mirror that fits nicely on your espresso machine without crowding the area. Most mirrors are designed with this in mind, and size would only be an issue if you have a smaller espresso machine like the Gaggia Classic
  • Build quality: these tools are simple in nature, but it's still annoying paying $30 bucks for a tool that breaks easily or comes broken. Look out for mirrors that have good reviews and build quality like my top pick the Normcore
  • Design: design is a personal preference, but in the world of coffee making it's important. You want to get a mirror that matches the design of your coffee machine. So if your machine has black features, grab a mirror that's black, if it has wood panelling, maybe consider a wood framed shot mirror. 
  • Magnetic: a magnetic espresso shot mirror is a must in my opinion. As you want to avoid accidently knocking it over when making espresso, or for the mirror to vibrate away when your pump is turned on - ruining your angle. A good magnet ensures that the mirror stays in place. In alternate, grab one with a heavy base so it stays still.
Espresso shot mirror magnet

A heavy magnetic base is good to have.

Espresso mirror ball pivot

You want your mirror to pivot.

DIY espresso shot mirror

If you can't find yourself to buying another coffee accessory, you can also consider making a simple shot mirror yourself! It's also a fund little project if you have the time over the weekend.

I've found a few good reddit threads and YouTube videos on how to make one yourself at home. In my case I just bought my mirror, however I did go down the DIY route when making my WDT tool


And there we have it. I hope you've found an espresso shot mirror to match your espresso machine. In summary, I like the normcore below. If you have any questions feel free to leave a comment below. 

I like the Normcore as it's well built, has a strong magnet to latch onto your drip tray, and has a good range of motion to view your espresso. This is also the mirror I personally use at home.

About The Author 

Ivan Bez

Ivan is the founder of Latte Art Guide and a barista with 10 years of experience. He loves coffee and aims to help people improve their coffee making skills.

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