Making espresso could be considered a form of art. While people mostly wouldn’t appreciate the process of manually brewing espresso because they either don’t have the time or don’t want to put in the effort, connoisseurs consider the preparation process an inseparable part of drinking espresso. And they need a special kind of an espresso maker, one that can allow them to get involved in the process as much as possible. Flair Signature Espresso Maker is one such machine.
The effort of the drinker is a key component of the espresso making process, and that’s what does immensely improve a cup of espresso made through the Signature Espresso Maker. If you want to enjoy the act of manually making coffee, this espresso maker might be a great choice. But before going into any conclusions, we need to see what the Signature Espresso Maker is comprised of. So is this espresso maker worth the price Flair is asking for it?
Flair Signature Espresso Maker is a completely manual espresso machine. While some may think that semi- or super-automatic espresso machines are the superior devices due to their simple usage and quick espresso delivery, manual espresso machines have something unique. They allow espresso enthusiasts to get truly involved in the whole process of espresso making by providing them with as up close experience as it can ever get when making espresso. By literally putting all the control into your hands, Flair Signature Espresso Maker allows you to truly enjoy espresso making.
Flair Signature Espresso Maker doesn’t have any special features: it can’t change water temperature or pick the size of the espresso cup. And that’s the beautiful thing about Flair Signature Espresso Maker as there is no need to wrap your head around dozens of functions.
So what do you need to do to make the perfect espresso? Well, firstly, you will need to have freshly ground coffee beans, as well as hot water at the perfect espresso temperature. The assembly of the device is the next step to take. Then, you need to put the ground coffee into the portafilter and push it down with the included stainless steel tamper, which in fact is a beautifully-crafted tool. Adding water at the perfect temperature is the next step, which is followed by manually brewing the coffee. By the way, this machine allows you to cold-brew espresso, which is a thing automatic espresso machines can’t do.
Using your muscle strength to brew espresso is the most responsible and tricky part of using this machine. That’s not a flaw of the machine: rather, it is your skill and to some degree your espresso taste that influences the final result. You could push down on the brewing handle as hard as you wish to get the ideal espresso. No automatic espresso machine will ever provide you with such precise control over the brewing process.
Delivering espresso isn’t the only thing an espresso machine needs to do. A key element to an espresso maker’s integrity is its design, especially with manual machines. The abundance of curves present in Flair Signature Espresso Maker attaches striking appearance to it, which could perfectly complement your high-tech kitchen or maybe soften the roughness of its furnishing.
What also makes Flair Signature Espresso Maker look absolutely gorgeous is its copper-plated portafilter base. The body of Flair Signature Espresso Maker is painted in either black or chrome, with black being a color that ideally suits the copper portafilter base, though the color scheming is a matter of taste, of course.
Flair Signature Espresso Maker could even become a beauteous piece in an espresso enthusiast’s collection thanks to its seamless design and excellent coloring.
Easy to clean
There are no electronic components in Flair Signature Espresso Maker, which allows you to absolutely safely take it apart and deep wash to make the machine ready for your next espresso. In fact, Flair designed the brewing head to be detachable, greatly easing the cleaning of the multi-piece mechanism. However, cleaning a manual espresso machine isn’t a breeze as with automatic machines since there are more things to take care of.
An undeniable advantage of Flair Signature Espresso Maker over automatic espresso machines is that it can be used absolutely everywhere. The machine doesn’t require any power to be operated. You would require power to grind coffee beans and heat up the water though, unless you have a manually operated device to do that as well.
Flair kindly supplies the buyers of Signature Espresso Maker with a high-quality foamed carrying case, which can accommodate every single item this machine comes with. Or, if you don’t plan to take the espresso machine anywhere, you could simply lay it down onto your countertop.
Benefits of a manual espresso making machine
Manual espresso makers should have a number of good benefits to justify the high price, you are probably thinking. They do have benefits indeed. However, manual espresso makers will be praised by only those who have enough time, desire, and skill to make espresso with them.
Manual espresso makers certainly aren’t the best kind of an espresso machine if you want to make espresso in mere minutes before going to work in the morning. Nor are they as easy to take care of as automatic espresso machines. However, they can do something that is unavailable with espresso machines: they provide you with full control over the espresso making process.
Automatic espresso machines control brewing pressure and water temperature completely automatically, though some of them provide their users with some room for adjustment. On the other hand, the performance of manual espresso machines is completely dependent on the user. You are the one who decides how much pressure to apply on the ground or how hot the water needs to be. Speaking of the temperature, you could make cold-brew espresso with a manual maker, which isn’t typically available with automatic coffee makers.
A manual espresso machine opens wide opportunities for experimenting with the perfect espresso. And since the “perfect” is subjective, the full control over the brewing process makes a manual espresso machine ideal for discovering that flawless cup.
Operating a manual espresso machine requires skill, however. Not in the sense that they are excessively complex to comprehend but rather in terms of making great espresso. It takes trial and error before you find the best way to make a morning cup of the drink. That doesn’t make manual espresso machines bad because the same applies to automatic makers, though to a much less extent because the process is almost fully automatic. On the contrary, the trial-and-error nature of manual espresso machines makes brewing espresso with them all more exciting!
Does the coffee come in contact with any plastic in this espresso maker?
The piston in the brew head and the portafilter contain plastic components, and they are all BPA-free. However, if you have any problems with the momentary contact of the plastic with the coffee, you could get the stainless steel piston and the bottomless portafilter offered by Flair to make the coffee path plastic-free.
Is the bottomless portafilter completely made from stainless steel?
It has a stainless steel basket and brew path but is encased in FDA food-safe plastic, the same that is used to make the stock portafilter.
Is the bottomless portafilter worth buying?
It could be a very nice accessory for this espresso maker. The bottomless portafilter allows you to see the bottom of the portafilter basket during espresso extraction. This allows you to immediately spot and then resolve any issues with brewing like channeling or uneven extraction, which will be especially useful if you are not that experienced in espresso making.
In fact, starting from July, Flair should have been delivering their Signature Espresso Makers with the bottomless portafilter out of the box. It actually also includes a spouted bottom to cover the portafilter basket. If you buy the Signature Espresso Maker and it comes with the older portafilter, you will have to decide whether or not you want the bottomless one.
Where can you get the accessories for Flair Signature Espresso Maker from?
Every single component of the Flair Signature Espresso maker is available on Flair’s website, so you shouldn’t have any issues with replacing faulty parts in the future.
Flair Signature Espresso Maker certainly is an excellent piece of machinery, isn’t it? It isn’t a product that will be liked by everyone, however. Some people don’t have the time or the desire to put effort into making espresso: after all, manually brewing espresso takes time. Others might be repulsed by the steep price of the Signature Espresso Maker. But for the rest, a manual espresso making machine will be a desired item, one without which fully delighting in drinking espresso is impossible.
In fact, anyone could appreciate manual espresso making, be they an experienced or even a starting drinker, if they want to. And if you find that you are one of them, Flair Signature Espresso Maker might be an excellent item to decorate your countertop with.