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La Spaziale S1 - Gordon Rose's Review
Posted: May 31, 2006, 6:27pm
review rating: 7.3
feedback: (0) comments | read | write
La Spaziale S1
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More About This Product
Arrow The La Spaziale S1 has 68 Reviews
Arrow The La Spaziale S1 has been rated 9.31 overall by our member reviewers
Arrow This product has been in our review database since February 18, 2004.
Arrow La Spaziale S1 reviews have been viewed 354,436 times (updated hourly).

Quality Reviews
These are some of the best-written reviews for this product, as judged by our members.
Name Ranking
Chas Rimpo 9.36
Michael Wolfson 8.76
Derek Sherman 8.46
Wolfgang Gaggl 8.30
Martin Lipton 8.22

Previous Review Next Review
Ratings and Stats Overall Rating: 9.6
Manufacturer: La Spaziale Quality: 10
Average Price: $1,895.00 Usability: 9
Price Paid: $1,895.00 Cost vs. Value 10
Where Bought: CaffeTech.com Aesthetics 9
Owned for: 1 year Overall 10
Writer's Expertise: I live coffee Would Buy Again: Yes
Similar Items Owned: la Pavoni lever professional, Innova, Faema Amica, Saeco Classico
Bottom Line: Why go half way?
Positive Product Points

Plumbing in was fast, easy, and works great
Quiet and increadibly powerful rotary vane pump
Insane steam
No chanelling
Exact and adjustable volumetric dosing

Negative Product Points

No visual display for the 1 degree temperature increments (adjusts by 1 degree but only displays in 5 degree increments unless you push the display buttons).

Detailed Commentary

A new world in espresso making that I just couldn't get to with the lever or consumer machines. The control, consistency and incredible pressure for both pulling shots and steaming are amazing. The plumbed in water is the way to go as well; it was really easy to do and after about a day I could never go back. The fact that I can turn the grind two notches finer and pull accurate temperature shots in repeatable times gives me near-perfection every time, whether one shot for myself or five in quick succession. The amount of creama I get is unbelievable - I have only ever seen this at a couple of the top espresso shops in Vancouver. The volumetric dosing is great and the ability to customize the exact volume, temp and pressure lets you fine-tune for specific roasts. I can pull better shots with the S1 every time than my best ever shot from any of the other machines I've used. The lever machine is about $1000US and fun, but a toy compared to the S1. I haven't used the $1500US heat exchange machines much, so I can't really comment, but after the machines I have used I wanted (and got) increadible temperature stability. The rotary vane pump I can compare to other high-end machines with vibe-pumps that I have used - the vane pump is awesome and worth every penny very quite and smooth with no drawbacks (except $ of course...).

I was a bit concerned at first that the 53mm basket would be less substantial than the 58mm E-61s, but this was unfounded as the 53mm head on this is full-industrial weight and very deep. The channeling issue seems to disappear on this machine completely because the basket is so deep and the pressure so good.

The steam wand has been up-sized from earlier models of the S1 I hear and is now over-the-top (in a good way). Make sure you have a 20oz pitcher. The hot water on demand is way more useful than I expected and I use it a lot despite drinking mostly espresso. The drip-tray is huge and very easy to slide out and empty.

I liked the full stainless pro-sumer machines in the photos more, but in person the commercial styling and build of the S1 has really grown on me to the point I prefer the real commercial machine.

Buying Experience

Bought via internet from Caffetech.com in Canada (equivalent in Canada to Chris Coffee in the USA for these machines I think). Joseph, the owner, went above and beyond in sevice and provided and explained all plumb-in needs and any other question I could think of (lots & lots...). No worries with any taxes or duties etc and the prices work out the same with exchange rate etc if you are in Canada.

Three Month Followup

Well, one year later and my only complaint is that La Spaziale came out with the S2 model! Now I want to get one of those, even though the differences are pretty minor. I love my S1 and I'm very glad I bought it over some of the other "pro-sumer" machines. I did get the 20 Amp 110V circuit going, and while the 15 Amp service is fine, the 20 is better. I can't think of any suggestions for improvements beyond the details that La Spaziale has already addressed in the S2 (better temp display, brewing preasure meter, available timer). I didn't know if I would actually adjust the temperature much, but I do actually tweak it slightly for my different beans.

Another Canadian friend bought an S2 from Caffeetech.com (the Canadian partner linked to Chris's) and had great service as well.

One Year Followup

Well, one year later and my only complaint is that La Spaziale came out with the S2 model! Now I want to get one of those, even though the differences are pretty minor. I love my S1 and I'm very glad I bought it over some of the other "pro-sumer" machines. I did get the 20 Amp 110V circuit going, and while the 15 Amp service is fine, the 20 is better. I can't think of any suggestions for improvements beyond the details that La Spaziale has already addressed in the S2 (better temp display, brewing preasure meter, available timer). I didn't know if I would actually adjust the temperature much, but I do actually tweak it slightly for my different beans.

Another Canadian friend bought an S2 from Caffetech.com (the Canadian partner linked to Chris's) and had great service as well.

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review rating: 7.3
Posted: May 31, 2006, 6:27pm
feedback: (0) comments | read | write
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