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Lelit PL 041 Espresso - Brian Dorais's Review
Posted: July 27, 2010, 1:13pm
review rating: 8.5
feedback: (0) comments | read | write
Lelit PL 041 Espresso Machine
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More About This Product
Arrow The Lelit PL 041 Espresso has 23 Reviews
Arrow The Lelit PL 041 Espresso has been rated 8.62 overall by our member reviewers
Arrow This product has been in our review database since October 22, 2007.
Arrow Lelit PL 041 Espresso reviews have been viewed 148,789 times (updated hourly).

Quality Reviews
These are some of the best-written reviews for this product, as judged by our members.
Name Ranking
Matthew Pecsok 10.00
Gary Edmunds 9.43
HEATHER HUNNICUTT 9.00
Joshua Wark 9.00
Armbrooke Thorne 9.00

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Ratings and Stats Overall Rating: 8.8
Manufacturer: Le'Lit Quality: 8
Average Price: $460.00 Usability: 9
Price Paid: $500.00 Cost vs. Value 9
Where Bought: iDrinkcoffee.com Aesthetics 10
Owned for: 6 months Overall 8
Writer's Expertise: I love coffee Would Buy Again: Yes
Similar Items Owned: Ascaso Arc
Bottom Line: Great machine for the price.  Makes a nice crema from first pull.  Good machine that allows anyone to make a great coffee right from the start.  Fantastic value.
Positive Product Points

nice looking machine
easy to use
big drip tray
good crema
small footprint
copious amounts of steam
very fast to heat up
pressure guage is very helpful to determine proper grind

Negative Product Points

very light machine, so have to hold it when tightening/loosening the portafilter
water reservoir is a pain to access (just not convenient)
slight leakage from portafilter
(would rate the machine higher if not for these issues)

Detailed Commentary

We have had this machine now for 3 months and it has been making excellent crema shots since day 1.  The machine heats up the water very quickly and reliably makes good shot after good shot.  The machine heats up so fast to get steam ready that you barely have time to fill the milk pitcher... this is a good thing!!!!  The drip tray is plenty large enough and you don't have to empty it on a daily basis.  The pump functionality is also very cool.  If hot water or an Americano is desired, you can leave the steam button pressed in, push the pump button and hot water will come out of the steam wand.  My previous machine (Ascaso Arc) would not do this.  It also really helps to refill the boiler with water after finished steaming.  

The water reservoir is my only beef with the machine.  There is a viewing port on the left side of the machine to see how much water is left (this is a good thing), but refilling it is a pain.  While the plastic bottle reservoir is easy enough to remove, it is terribly inconvenient.  Remove all your tampers, cups, etc from the top of the machine, pull out the 2 hoses from the reservoir, remove the water bottle and refill and reinstall.... total pain.  Luckily we have a funnel that fits into the bottle without removing the hoses or removing the bottle.  This allows us to refill on the fly when we've been less than careful about the water level.  

That aside, it's been a great machine so far.  It looks great, doesn't take up too much counter space and makes a great coffee.  The guys at idrinkcoffee.com were also fantastic to deal with and sent along a pound of beans and a really nice metal tamper with wooden handle (miles better than the plastic job that came standard with the machine).

Hopefully the machine can stand the test of time.... updates to come....

Buying Experience

The guys at idrinkcoffee.com were also fantastic to deal with and sent along a pound of beans and a really nice metal tamper with wooden handle (miles better than the plastic job that came standard with the machine).  When I called to place my order, the machine was on back order but they were right on with the timing and the machine arrived as promised.  It was very well packaged and the extras were a very pleasant surprise.

Three Month Followup

It's been 6 months and I have to say that this machine consistently makes great coffee.  Of course, the fresher the ground beans, the better the crema (but isn't that always the case).  It's really tough NOT to get a good coffee from this machine.  I use a Krups burr grinder set at the finest setting and it seems to be perfect for this machine.  There is a copious amount of steam for frothing milk, the unit heats up very quickly.  Unlike my previous machine, Ascasc Arc, this one has not popped a temperature sensor(3 times - finally had to install a resettable temp sensor and reset weekly!!), burned through any wiring nor has the boiler crapped out (3 times on the Ascaso).  The machine is still not perfect, but the negatives are FAR outweighed by the positives.  The portafilter will still leak 3 out of 5 times, regardless of how tight it is put into the machine.  Refilling the machine is still a pain, removing the top, and pulling out the container to fill is just too cumbersome.  A small funnel works well, but it's a design that is just not convenient.  The last issue is the weight of the machine.  The machine is very light, so tightening the portafilter means that you have to brace the machine or else the whole unit will move across the counter.  
Like I said though, these faults do not compromise the quality of the coffee that this machine consistently can make and for the price, it is a great value.  Hopefully I can echo these comments when we hit 1 year with the machine.

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review rating: 8.5
Posted: July 27, 2010, 1:13pm
feedback: (0) comments | read | write
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