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La peppina versus Mcal
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Discussions > Espresso > Lever Espresso > La peppina...  
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espressonewb1
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Joined: 11 Mar 2012
Posts: 30
Location: NY metro
Expertise: Just starting

Espresso: Mini Vivaldi
Grinder: Nuova Simonelli Mdx
Drip: Technivorm Mocca Master
Posted Tue Feb 12, 2013, 7:46pm
Subject: La peppina versus Mcal
 

I'm looking into buying one of these two machines. I have an opportunity to buy an Mcal from a local member but there are also a number of la peppina machines on eBay right now including some from the mother land from which they were built

My understanding is that both produce nice layered shots with "thin" crema. The peppina doesn't have a pressure stat and can be more easily modded with a pid. However one of the concerns is the availability of parts. I know Doug at OE stocks seals, drip trays etc.. but what happens if the element goes ?

Couple of questions

(1) which one would you choose and why?

(2) can a la peppina from Italy run on 110V circuit without changing the element or is it better to change the element or simply add a 220v outlet and buy an adapter for the plug?

I know this is a matter of taste and personal preference but the peppina seems easier and a bit more simple to pull shots on. Less playing around with the temperature dance. The steamer from what I understand is more of a gimmick although I could easily steam milk on another machine.

My goal is to experience the lever route but start with a spring lever  first.

Space is also a serious concern for me as I'm getting heat to move the mini vivaldi off of the counter. That's probably going to be up for sale soon.

Thanks in advance for your input
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IMAWriter
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IMAWriter
Joined: 4 Jul 2002
Posts: 5,700
Location: Brentwood, TN
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Bezzera Strega
Grinder: Forte, Preciso/Esatto, KyM...
Vac Pot: Adcraft SS, Yama 8 cup
Drip: Brazen, Kalita, Chemex,...
Roaster: Behmor 1600, CO/UFO combo
Posted Tue Feb 12, 2013, 10:04pm
Subject: Re: La peppina versus Mcal
 

I'm a lever guy, but I'll let others answer most of your questions.
However, having spent a LOT of time with a manual (not spring assisted) lever, I'd hope you might consider a manual FIRST?
The experience of a TOTAL commitment to your shot is a tactile experience, and would give you great feedback as to what goes on with your shot as it progresses.

Spring levers ar wonderful as well, of course, both commercially designed, like a Londinium L1, Bosco, the great machines by KVW, etc, as well as the machines designed for the home like the MCAL (spring), La Pavoni (fully manual), and the underrated Ponte Vecchio Lusso (Spring). And, of course the Queen of home lever machines, the Olympia Cremina. (fully manual). I've owned a Cremina for nearly 5 years. Unparalleled shots for a home lever, or almost ANY machine.
Personally, I'd go for either the Lusso or the MCAL if you're desiring a spring assisted lever, in the under $1k category. An MCAL preowned in good shape should go for under 1k. The advantage is owning a true steaming machine.

The Peppina is a very cool "kettle' style machine, as is the more expensive non spring Ararex Caravel. The Caravel is perhaps the most desired of all the non steaming "kettle" machines. Pour in 200f water, pull your shot.

A fact is MOST folks that go lever aren't as concerned with copious crema as we are about excellent espresso. However, many of these machines produce all the crema you could want.

 
Rob J (LMWDP #187)
My Music Production web site:
www.robertjason.com
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espressonewb1
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Joined: 11 Mar 2012
Posts: 30
Location: NY metro
Expertise: Just starting

Espresso: Mini Vivaldi
Grinder: Nuova Simonelli Mdx
Drip: Technivorm Mocca Master
Posted Sat Feb 16, 2013, 5:18pm
Subject: Re: La peppina versus Mcal
 

Thanks for the reply

Have you sold your Cremina? If so I hope you get back in.

How about the microcimbali ? There is one here for sale on this site.

I was thinking of going to a complete manual lever process and if I go that route I would certainly consider a Cremina.  A cremina could be a viable option but I already have an olympia made pasquini so I'm wondering how different the taste in the cup could be.
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IMAWriter
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IMAWriter
Joined: 4 Jul 2002
Posts: 5,700
Location: Brentwood, TN
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Bezzera Strega
Grinder: Forte, Preciso/Esatto, KyM...
Vac Pot: Adcraft SS, Yama 8 cup
Drip: Brazen, Kalita, Chemex,...
Roaster: Behmor 1600, CO/UFO combo
Posted Sat Feb 16, 2013, 5:29pm
Subject: Re: La peppina versus Mcal
 

espressonewb1 Said:

Thanks for the reply

Have you sold your Cremina? If so I hope you get back in.

How about the microcimbali ? There is one here for sale on this site.

I was thinking of going to a complete manual lever process and if I go that route I would certainly consider a Cremina.  A cremina could be a viable option but I already have an olympia made pasquini so I'm wondering how different the taste in the cup could be.

Posted February 16, 2013 link

Yep, the Cremina is now residing in chicago, owned by a very nice fellow. I send him suggestions, and make myself available. Hopefully one day before I croak I'll get another machine.
You seen to favor the kettle style machines, perhaps for their simplicity?
If JonR sees this thread, perhaps he can weigh in, as he is, or was a La Peppina owner.

Doug, at OE would be a good person to ask which machine might be the proper one for your usage style.
www.orphanespresso.com
Stefano, at http://www.espressocare.com would also be a source, as he sells a couple of different levers.

 
Rob J (LMWDP #187)
My Music Production web site:
www.robertjason.com
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Warrior372
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Warrior372
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Roaster: Has Garanti 2kg & HotTop
Posted Mon Feb 18, 2013, 12:17pm
Subject: Re: La peppina versus Mcal
 

I have owned both the La Peppina and the MCaL. Both are great machines. The MCaL will allow you to steam, whereas the La Peppina's 'steam cap' is more for looks. A nice thing about the La Peppina is that you can pid it to control shot temps since it is an open boiler lever. It only takes a few minutes to hook up Auberins Sous Vide pid control to the La Peppina. If you prefer milk drinks I would go with the Elektra and if you prefer straight shots I would go with the pid'd Peppina.
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IMAWriter
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IMAWriter
Joined: 4 Jul 2002
Posts: 5,700
Location: Brentwood, TN
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Bezzera Strega
Grinder: Forte, Preciso/Esatto, KyM...
Vac Pot: Adcraft SS, Yama 8 cup
Drip: Brazen, Kalita, Chemex,...
Roaster: Behmor 1600, CO/UFO combo
Posted Mon Feb 18, 2013, 1:34pm
Subject: Re: La peppina versus Mcal
 

Warrior372 Said:

I have owned both the La Peppina and the MCaL. Both are great machines. The MCaL will allow you to steam, whereas the La Peppina's 'steam cap' is more for looks. A nice thing about the La Peppina is that you can pid it to control shot temps since it is an open boiler lever. It only takes a few minutes to hook up Auberins Sous Vide pid control to the La Peppina. If you prefer milk drinks I would go with the Elektra and if you prefer straight shots I would go with the pid'd Peppina.

Posted February 18, 2013 link

Awesome post.
When I had Doug's (OE) "traveling" Caravel, I  heated water to just below boil in my hot pot, dropped in a thermocouple, when it read 201f, pulled 2 shots bam bam!
Lovely machine. I'm sure the La Peppina is as well.

 
Rob J (LMWDP #187)
My Music Production web site:
www.robertjason.com
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donnydregs
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donnydregs
Joined: 6 Dec 2009
Posts: 126
Location: Australia
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Elektra A3 / MCAL / E61 Two...
Grinder: Mazzer Mini / HG-One (soon)
Posted Fri Feb 22, 2013, 4:24am
Subject: Re: La peppina versus Mcal
 

An irrelevant comparison unless you are exclusively an espresso drinker in which case the deco appeal and the ability to produce modest amounts of nice espresso the Peppina may be an option.

Or..

My Cremina, which is currently under a full rebuild for future sale, is a crema monster but my crema modest Elektra MCAL drubs it in the steaming and taste department. If you enjoy milk drinks then the Elektra wins hands down for it's extraordinary ability to steam copious amounts of sweet milk. In this context, as far as a Peppina MCAL comparison goes it's no contest.
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espressonewb1
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Joined: 11 Mar 2012
Posts: 30
Location: NY metro
Expertise: Just starting

Espresso: Mini Vivaldi
Grinder: Nuova Simonelli Mdx
Drip: Technivorm Mocca Master
Posted Tue Feb 26, 2013, 1:47pm
Subject: Re: La peppina versus Mcal
 

Thanks for the response everyone.

I prefer mostly espresso straight up no sugar no milk but should cater to the needs of everyone else in the household so it is best that I get a good machine that can also steam milk well.

Although I have an eye on an arrarex caravel as well due to its simplicity but as someone else posted on another thread good luck if you are out a heating element or some other part.

To change topics a bit. I've been trying to contact the owners of the hg one grinder to no avail. Tried purchasing the last lot of grinders they had left from their first production run but no stock left. Even emails left unanswered. Must be a side business for these folks. It sure does look like a nice and good performing grinder.
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IMAWriter
Senior Member
IMAWriter
Joined: 4 Jul 2002
Posts: 5,700
Location: Brentwood, TN
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Bezzera Strega
Grinder: Forte, Preciso/Esatto, KyM...
Vac Pot: Adcraft SS, Yama 8 cup
Drip: Brazen, Kalita, Chemex,...
Roaster: Behmor 1600, CO/UFO combo
Posted Tue Feb 26, 2013, 2:59pm
Subject: Re: La peppina versus Mcal
 

espressonewb1 Said:

Thanks for the response everyone.

I prefer mostly espresso straight up no sugar no milk but should cater to the needs of everyone else in the household so it is best that I get a good machine that can also steam milk well.

Although I have an eye on an arrarex caravel as well due to its simplicity but as someone else posted on another thread good luck if you are out a heating element or some other part.

To change topics a bit. I've been trying to contact the owners of the hg one grinder to no avail. Tried purchasing the last lot of grinders they had left from their first production run but no stock left. Even emails left unanswered. Must be a side business for these folks. It sure does look like a nice and good performing grinder.

Posted February 26, 2013 link

Lets not go there regarding this off topic (HG-One). Besides, we discourage customer complaints posted here, as we can do nothing. Please continue to handle it privately.

As far as machines, you are all over the joint. You say you want to steam, then you mention the Caravel.
Please try to focus on your needs.

 
Rob J (LMWDP #187)
My Music Production web site:
www.robertjason.com
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espressonewb1
Senior Member


Joined: 11 Mar 2012
Posts: 30
Location: NY metro
Expertise: Just starting

Espresso: Mini Vivaldi
Grinder: Nuova Simonelli Mdx
Drip: Technivorm Mocca Master
Posted Wed Feb 27, 2013, 9:34am
Subject: Re: La peppina versus Mcal
 

IMAWriter Said:

Lets not go there regarding this off topic (HG-One). Besides, we discourage customer complaints posted here, as we can do nothing. Please continue to handle it privately.

As far as machines, you are all over the joint. You say you want to steam, then you mention the Caravel.
Please try to focus on your needs.

Posted February 26, 2013 link

Thanks Robert for your input. Not a complaint about HG One just haven't heard from them. Product looks great though with plenty of positive reviews and my interaction thus far has been pleasant so that's as far as it goes.

You are correct. Wants and needs are two different things. I'd love to have a dedicated espresso only lever and it would be nice to have  the caravel and elektra to test side by side but that's not going to happen.
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