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Solis SL-90 - Michael Feinberg's Review
Posted: January 12, 2008, 4:03pm
review rating: 7.0
feedback: (1) comments | read | write
Solis SL-90
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More About This Product
Arrow The Solis SL-90 has 26 Reviews
Arrow The Solis SL-90 has been rated 7.98 overall by our member reviewers
Arrow This product has been in our review database since November 30, 2001.
Arrow Solis SL-90 reviews have been viewed 114,622 times (updated hourly).

Quality Reviews
These are some of the best-written reviews for this product, as judged by our members.
Name Ranking
Rick Waits 9.50
Rohan Durrant 9.50
Rob Novak 7.87
Mark Thacker 7.66
Mark Prince 7.63

Previous Review Next Review
Ratings and Stats Overall Rating: 8.2
Manufacturer: Solis Quality: 9
Average Price: $449.00 Usability: 8
Price Paid: $440.00 Cost vs. Value 9
Where Bought: Seattle Coffee Gear Aesthetics 7
Owned for: 1 year Overall 8
Writer's Expertise: I love coffee Would Buy Again: Yes
Similar Items Owned:
Bottom Line: Love the machine and would recommend to anyone!
Positive Product Points

Great consistent espresso and a powerful steamer.

Digital shot selector allows for set-and-forget shots. Consistent time after time.

Negative Product Points

Slow making multiple lattes (more than two) at a time.

The built in tamper (plastic thingy) is useless. Unusual sized basket makes finding the proper sized after market tamper a little more difficult.

Detailed Commentary

Bought this as a gift for my wife, but I am the one who uses it (making her lattes and mine).

At first I found some settings/processes a little frustrating as others have mentioned, such as switching from steam back to espresso. This could be better documented. However, with time I came to understand what was happening and found a technique that works very well.

When making up to two lattes, I pour both shots (I always do double shots) first...grind, tamp, shot, clean, repeat.

We both like Mocha lattes, so I then set the machine on Steam and prepare the cups...a very little sugar (Sugar in the raw is my preference...less sweet) and a little Ghirardelli powdered chocolate. Add the shot and stir (sugar dissolves better when let to sit for a minute). Now back to the Solis...

I use a larger steamer pitcher (32oz I believe). I flush the steaming wand in an extra steamer cup for several seconds to flush a bit of hot water that always comes out at the beginning. Then I put in about 22oz of cold milk in the large frothing pitcher/cup and steam. The technique specifics can be found elsewhere, but I get consistently excellent micro foamed steamed milk. This take a few minutes, but the Solis has plenty of steam for this (however it will not be able to handle another cup or much more).

Once done, add milk to the cups and top with a dollop (sp?) of foam.

Now back to the machine, I flush the steamer and wipe the wand with a wet cloth or paper towel (using some of that hot water flushed previously). Now the trick...if you want to be able to turn around and do another shot quickly...set the machine back to the espresso setting, put a cup under the steaming wand, and open the steaming valve. This will start the pump and refill the boiler. Keep it going until the first squirt of water comes out the steamer wand. You will notice the ready light has gone from red to green. Close the valve and now you have a boiler that is refilled and ready to go. Adding the water has allowed the temperature to drop back to the range suitable for espresso and also filled the boiler. I like to run a partial empty shot to flush the head and basket before doing another real shot.

Hopefully that all makes sense and helps those frustrated with the delay required after steaming before being able to run the machine again...just run the pump to cool the boiler and you can be ready in seconds rather than waiting many minutes!

Buying Experience

No problems. Good price, prompt delivery.

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review rating: 7.0
Posted: January 12, 2008, 4:03pm
feedback: (1) comments | read | write
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