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Reports From the Road
SCAA 2005 Show Floor: Consumer Stuff!
Author: Mark Prince
Posted: May 4, 2005
Article rating: 8.5
feedback: (26) comments | read | write

This year's SCAA trade show in Seattle had a lot for consumers - a lot of stuff. Unfortunately, a lot of it was tea stuff. Or pod coffee. Or syrups and mixes.

But there were some good things that are near and dear to a true CoffeeGeek, and even one great thing. In the photo essay below, we'll show you some show highlights. First up are two series of photos taken by the intrepid CG Girls - Beata Siwinski, Jeanette Chan, Lily Lui, and Bonnie Chow, as they walked the show floor for two days. Next are photos by yours truly, then we end with a nice surprise.

CG Girls Photos, Part 1

The CG Girls walked the show floor for two days. I have a lot of tea photos I can't show (grin), but also a lot of photos they took of interesting stuff in the coffee world. Here's part one.

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Astra's Prosumer Machine
Not much has changed on this machine from last year. It's still assembled in the US. Still has tons of steam power. And still is missing a hot water tap.
What the....
What the heck is that?!!!?
Bodum Lipstick?
Bodum Lipstick thermal container? I predict a very swift death for this product. ;)
Saeco's Newest
The Incanto Sirius. Nifty look, metal construction, and a touch screen. Too bad it's still based on the flawed Starbies Italia brew group.
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The... hey!
A tea thing? On CoffeeGeek? Well, the girls liked this one, and it does sort of look like a coffee maker. It's the TriniTea.
Pods. Sigh
Grimac's one cup system. I believe (not confirmed) this one runs on ESE pods, which is better than a proprietary system.
Poor Pavoni.
Pavoni's been falling behind the ball as of late, offering cheaply made machines. Come on Pavoni!
More Pods
Yep. Nouva Simonelli's entry into the office pod game. At least the price is cheaper than last year.

Wow, can I be harsh or what? But seriously, I've harped on a few companies in the descriptives above, and one I'll really harp on is Pavoni. Stop getting your products made in third world countries, stop licensing your (soon to be former) good name to be slapped on inferior third rate products, and get back to us Pavoni. Do something truly innovative and great. Please! (see below for more sighing by yours truly)

CG Girls Photos, Part 2

More goodness from the CG Girls, and comments by yours truly.

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Bodum's Booth
Bodum's booth is always pretty cool to check out. They do a good job of presenting their products.
Bodum Espresso
We'll have a First Look online very, very soon, as soon as all this SCAA and WBC stuff is out of the way.
There's a rumour Isomac is pulling out of the home espresso biz. Doesn't look like it, if their booth this year is any indication.
Hottop Roaster
The Hottop with slightly tweaked cooling vanes and side control panel. Still doesn't let you fully control the roast though. The machine can call it quits without you liking it. Still.
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Bloody Cows!
Cows were everywhere at this show. The CG Girls "stole" a couple of cows from one booth, and placed them on a cow themed Innova at another booth!
Row Pavonis
A row of Pavoni Lever machines.
Back to the Future
This is Pavoni's "innovation" for the year.... going back to the circa 1973 colour schemes on the Euripicolla and Professional. Sigh.
Reg and EPNW
Reg and EPNW worked a deal out to make them the semi-exclusive distributors of his products in the US. Check out the annodized tamps!

More Show Floor Consumer Craziness

One booth operator we're not too pleased with - Astoria. At a nearly empty booth, CG Girl Jeanette waited patiently for a quarter of an hour to ask about a specific product and ask permission to take photos, and was ignored. Bad Astoria! Stop playing the oldschool boy routine.

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The New Alpenrost
The new Swissmar Bravi, the Alp's replacement. It's not going to be cheap...
The previous shiny metal inner surface is replaced by teflon. I asked how it would affect the roast, and was told they have compensated for it.
The Bravi still roasts like the old Alp, but I was told the Bravi has a "profile" built in, ramping up instead of steady on like the old model.
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Baratza Virtuoso
Baratza's new grinder, still prototype, but I heard the motor... or didn't... it's almost silent! Unheard of in a consumer grinder!
Old... out!
The old burr mills used in the Solis Maestro and Maestro Plus. Found in many other grinders too.
The New!
The new, much more beefier and tunable proposed burr set for the Virtuoso.
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No more Solis!
This grinder is going to get Baratza's own name on it.
Astora Compact Wega Clone
You know, every show's got at least one. No, not a new machine... a Booth operator that drops the ball. CG Girl Jeanette waited patiently for over 15 minutes, trying to catch Astoria reps' eye to ask about this machine and get permission to take a pic, and was ignored. I found out and said screw it - I'll photograph it. Call it what it is - a clone of other machines and too expensive. And Astoria? You guys need to get a clue.
Save me!
A commuter mug... press pot. Is it just me, or is this style of 24-32 oz super mugs plain ugly?
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Dualit Dual Groups
Dualit's dual group home machine has hit N. American shores, and runs (IIRC) on 110V.
Espresso Parts Northwest's award winning booth. Best large booth!
Tamper Buzz
Espresso Craft is a new tamper company that was evident. Awesome, super polished tampers, and a unique "base" to be used with crotchless tampers!
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A Super Auto I can like...
Maybe. Why? Well, first of all, it's under $700 retail (proposed). Second, it has a very unique brew group (pictured). Third, grind travel path is short. That's two of my three "super auto pet peeves" answered. Temperatures? Dunno yet.
The Group
Here's where they completely whip Saeco - the brew group is horizontal. The ground coffee travels a very short distance, maybe a couple of grams left in transit. And the brewed coffee only travels about 3cm to reach the spouts to cup.
Tiltable spout lever on the machine. The temperatures are still suspect. Hopefully we'll get one for detailed review, to find out.
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FF - are you sure?
These are the machines that last year, everyone was calling a Francis Francis rip off. Sorry - don't agree. FF!! doesn't hold a monopoly on retro look, and under $500 many espresso machines are very similar to begin with.
Nifty controls and gauge. I am concerned that these have aluminum boilers though.
Bloody Cows!
I found more of those cows! Actually, it's a dairy company's promotional items.

Best for Last - the La Marzocco Consumer Machine

I've saved the best for last. The highlight for consumers at this year's show is without a doubt, the La Marzocco consumer machine prototype. Enjoy.

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La Marzocco Consumer
This is it. Something I've been waiting for, for almost five years now. Woot!
When in full production, this machine will have an authentic La Marzocco paddlewheel group on top. Right now, it's just a cap on their existing chromed group.
Control Central
The control panel will get a redesign, but all the functionality will remain. GB5 inside, baybee.
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A peek!
Here's a peek inside. Man, can you believe they managed to cram in a 3litre brew boiler, a 5litre steam boiler, preheater, PID, electronics, a pump, AND a 1 gallon reservoir?
Just in case you thought it was a mock up. ;)
The man!
The man behind the machine's development - Bill Crossland. He, along with chief cheerleader Kent Bakke were the two principals at LM pushing to make this machine.

Hope you enjoyed folks. More to come, including a look at the commercial items on the show floor, the personalities, the parties, the odds and sods, and a massive mutli-post feature about the WBC.

Article rating: 8.5
Author: Mark Prince
Posted: May 4, 2005
feedback: (26) comments | read | write
Reports From the Road Column Archives  
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One of the more popular pieces of content on the CoffeeGeek website are the reports from major trade shows. We cover shows like no other media source does - giving first hand intimate and frank reports that give you the real scoop on what's going on, from a consumer and a coffee lover's true perspective.

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