darkboron Senior Member Joined: 25 Jan 2005 Posts: 225 Location: Milwaukee, WI Expertise: Pro Roaster
Grinder: KitchenAid Pro Burr Grinder Drip: Chemex, french press,...
Posted Fri Jun 3, 2005, 9:05am Subject: Which La Pavoni should I look get?
I don't know what the variations are from the manual La Pavoni machines, could someone explain what the differences between them are? (I know that's probably asking a lot.) It's going to be my first espresso machine, so I want to make sure I get the right one--and yeah, I know beginners shouldn't get manual, but that's what I want. How much water do the manual Pavoni's hold? Can I use it for brewing coffee?
EN Senior Member Joined: 31 May 2004 Posts: 236 Location: Ontario, Canada Expertise: I love coffee
Espresso: Isomac Millennium Grinder: Mazzer Mini Vac Pot: Bodum Columbia (press) Drip: Ya, i hear it too, where is... Roaster: Gene Cafe
Posted Fri Jun 3, 2005, 9:51am Subject: Re: Which La Pavoni should I look get?
Dont be afraid of the manual machine, this was my first (and only so far) espresso machine. it is easy to use, and easy to get very good results with (i use lavaza il perfetto espresso, which is pre packaged preground espresso) everyone tells me how much better my espresso is than any local coffee shops or high end restaurants (most of which are so horrible i cannot drink, no wonder everyone thinks espresso is horrible).
The difference is two things, the cheaper one (which i own) is the europicola (i think) it has no guages at all, everything is done by sound... you have to feel or hear the change in hiss as hit heats up... wonderfull first thing in the am, its quite like meditation if you ask me.... you must be at one with your machine!!
the guages would definitally help you get more consistent brews, especially in the biggining. it would make it easyer to adjust if you got it alittle hot the first time, just take a reading, and make sure its less next shot.
other than that, its just asthetics... wood trim, brass eagles and such.
You cant really make coffee (i am guessing your thinking like a pot of coffee to surve guests????). what you can do is pull a shot and make something like an americano (what a horrible thing to do to a perfectly good shot... what did it ever do to you??) but trust me you will never want a brewed coffee again. i hardly ever even use my bodem anymore.
oh, and your other question, how much water does it hold... well this is one more diff on the machines... the professional holds more water, i dont know how much, but the europicolla holds enough for... oh maby 6 shots.... i fill mine each morning, and i drink around 3 shots per day.
oh ya, and you asked about the difference in machines over time... i bought mine used from the original owner, it was purchased from new in '86. i had to replace a thermofuse in it, which is when i found out that the only difference is the fuse, the newer ones have a fues block as opposed to a thermofuse, and the colour of the base is different... neither of which means anything to me.
Passenger Senior Member Joined: 11 Oct 2004 Posts: 76 Location: Wisconsin Expertise: I love coffee
Espresso: Anita Grinder: Rocky Drip: Clarity Roaster: SCGC and Poppery II
Posted Fri Jun 3, 2005, 2:04pm Subject: Re: Which La Pavoni should I look get?
I believe that the current new model is the Millinium model. I could be wrong on that. My impression was when they made the change to a single switch and pressure stat they increased the basket and portafilter size. Hopefully someone will correct me if I've got that wrong, I'm only familiar with the older two switch model.
gammeltoft Senior Member Joined: 5 Nov 2004 Posts: 239 Location: Copenhagen, Denmark Expertise: I love coffee
Espresso: Dalla Corte Mini Grinder: Mazzer Mini E Roaster: Alpenröst
Posted Fri Jun 3, 2005, 5:42pm Subject: Re: Which La Pavoni should I look get?
Make sure to get a millenium model. If you buy a new machine, you should be pretty sure to get the right one. On Ebay, however, the older ones still seem to dominate. Within the last the decades you may effectively distinguish between three machines:
- the old europiccola: this one has a double switch and no pressurestat. This means you can either set the temperature for low or high, but really have to go by feel for when the machine is ready. - the newer europiccola/the pro: from about the mid-nineties (I think) onwards, the europ. got the same pressostat as the professional. These aid in getting right temperatures and make sure the unit doesn't burn down if you forget about it for half an hour. Otherwise, grouphead and mechanics are just the same. - the millenium: Around 2000, Pavoni changes the grouphead for both the pro and the euro. In order to moderate overheating and temperature instability, a plastic insulutator was installes inside the grouphead, which forces boiler water to travel around the group before entering the piston on the side facing the operator. In my experience, this makes the process significantly less erratic. Rather than relying on the a large temperature difference, this system allows a somewhat more stable temperature environment. Not perfect, and it will still overheat eventually. But a lot better. The modification was actually inspired by the very first europiccola, which featured an active heating of the grouphead by water from the boiler (amazing design, should you ever get a chance to get your hands on one). At the same time, the portafilter was changed from 49 mm to 51 mm (internal measurement). This may not sound as a lot, but it does make a difference. The baskets for the millenium model is also slightly deeper and more straight-walled - both making for a better shot.
The difference between the pro and the euro are pretty much down to two three things: the euro heats up faster, the pro on the other hand has somewhat larger capacity (not much of an issue, as four is pretty much max no of shots in one session with this machine) and somewhat better steam power (a good thing for any cappu lover).
Visually, the millenium can be discerned by the larger diameter of the upper part of the group. I am posting a pic of my machine, which is a mill. euro. with post-fitted manometer. If I had to redo it today, I would get a chrome mill. pro.. This is a matter of: 1) chrome being more resilient and less susceptible to corrosion. 2) the pro having the manometer (good if you want to fiddle with the pressostat setting later). 3) the pro having better steam. 4) the millennium banging out better shots.
(Click for larger image)
Coffee leads men to trifle away their time, scald their chops, and spend their money, all for a little base, black, thick, nasty, bitter, stinking nauseous puddle water. ~The Women's Petition Against Coffee, 1674
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