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the first look
Swissmar Alpenrost First Look
First Look Posted: Friday, October 25, 2002
Author: Mark Prince
Machine Class: Coffee Roaster, Drum
Alpenrost First Look
Product Supplier


1st Line Equipment, LLC

Sweet Marias

Product Pricing

You can purchase the Swissmar Alpenrost from 1st Line Equipment or from the famous consumer green bean coffee source, Sweet Marias in the US for $289 plus some extras - contact the dealer of your choice for further info. Swissmar provided us this product direct.

The Swissmar (website) Alpenrost is a product that many home roasters and almost as many small professional roasters anticipated. Before it came to market, there was no viable half pound roaster available to the public for a price below $1,000, and the ones hovering around that price point were more often than not based on air roasting technology. The Alpenrost is a drum roaster, using electrical heating coils to do its job, and that made it highly desirable.

The Alpenrost (or Alp, as most owners call it) was so eagerly anticipated that it developed a reputation for being vaporware; that is, a product that is shown at trade shows often, but not available for actual sale. Anthony Lemme ( the inventor of the machine) and Daniel Oehy (President of Swissmar) were often showing it at trade shows with great interest, while the continually tweaked and worked on the device, delaying the market introduction.

This changed in November, 1999, when production units first started shipping, and Swissmar hasn't looked back since.

The original production models of the Alp were not without minor toothing pains. Some early failures were reported in online forums specializing in home roasting and high-end coffee, and the original Alps were very susceptible to voltage changes and ambient temperatures. Roasting outside in winter with an Alp was virtually impossible, though that didn't stop many an intrepid home roaster from trying and experimenting.

In 2001, Swissmar made some substantial changes the machine. The most prominent is the addition of a new ambient thermostat to help regulate the interior temperatures better and to allow on the fly adjustments depending on the exterior temperatures. The electronics and roasting profile were further refined to provide better accuracy to the visual indicators on the display panel.

Because of these changes, CoffeeGeek contacted Swissmar and requested a current-shipping model for Detailed Review evaluation. We have access to two Alpenrosts currently, but both models are first generation versions. Call this new one the Alpenrost 1.1 model.

As usual, please note this is our First Look at the product. We intend on doing a 6 month evaluation of the product to give it a full and complete shakedown, doing at least two to four roasts a week. Stay tuned for the Detailed Review, but for now, enjoy this First Look


This first look and all its parts are ©2001-2015 CoffeeGeek.com and the first look in part or in whole may NOT be reproduced in any electronic or printed medium without prior permission from the author or this website. This includes all photographs. For information on reproducing any part of this first look (or any images) or if you would like to purchase a printed version of this first look for commercial or private use, please contact us at info@coffeegeek.com for further details.
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