Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Why We Bought a Nuova Simonelli Espresso Machine....

Of course I knew the history of Nuova Simonelli.
It started 70 years ago and for very long the machines were very Sci Fi looking.

They started to build in advanced technology in very early stages and the one i bought second hands was also very special for its days of fabrication.

The machine did never work properly, but this way I was getting in touch with the Belgian importer CDS. They were very professional and aware of the needs of the market.

When the WBC decided to go for Nuova Simonelli Aurelia as their machine of preference, i started to dig into this machine.
The soft infusion system sounded a bit suspicious to me, although the ease of handling, quality build and fantastic steaming made me enthousiastic after all.

The problem for us was more into the looks. When the WBC Aurelia was launched we were pulling our shots on a La Marzocco Linea and compared to this machine the Simonelli looked a little bit too shiny and plastic and neon.

After drinking great espresso on several Aurelia's we had an installment of the basic Aurelia at Vinyl and Coffee in Antwerp.
Very convincing and also reasonable in price and service.

2 years later and we already installed 5 Appia machines. These were very easy to steer, not very expensive and gave very good results in the cup, with fantastic steaming on top.

Deciding on a new machine for our main bar at the Federal Reserve we were at first not very reluctant to install a Simonelli though.
Two other machines grabbed our attention.
First one was the Kees Van der Westen Spirit.

Yes, this one looks very similar to our Mistral. Reason is simple. Kees is the original designer of the Mistral, but sold the project to La Marzocco.
A brilliant piece of equipment!!!
Why not the Spirit?
Still looking for decent follow up on the technical front, it felt a bit too early to get us going with Kees.

Second option was the newest babe from La Marzocco, the Linea PB.
We've always been big fans of La Marzocco, the people behind it, the Belgian distributor and most of all the community surrounding it.
La Marzocco Italy was very enthousiastic to launch their newest piece of technology at Caffenation, but there wasn't a way to get it in before the end of September, and therefor we decided to make a short stop with the Nuova Simonelli Aurelia II T3.

Yes, a different look and actually a different machine all together.
A couple of things :
PID : This innovative digital pressure switch is a very accurate tool determing the precise temperature. The Barista can control and program it directly from the display.
SIS : A Soft Infusion System which guarantees a soft infusion able to make more stable brews, It compensates errors in dosing and tamping.
And this works; Sunday night I made two consecutive double shots the last 20 minutes of the Level 1 class. Mostly they run different because of old ground coffee in the grinder, colder discs and a machine that did not run for 2 hours, but not the T3. 2 times 27" exactly!!! Very impressive.

And some extra new features like cool touch steam wands, milk lights and a reverse mirror (stolen from Slayer) to have a good look at your shots when using the naked portafilter.

It is a 2-group. Normally not big enough, but when it goes down for training and later on to a client we think a 2-group is the logical choice.
Plus, machines with such a steaming power, big cup tray and steered with 380v electricity can easily handle a 2000 kilo's of coffee on a yearly base.

So, don't hesitate and come have a peek at the newest of the newest, at Caffenation.

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