When it comes to home espresso making, the Flair 58+ Manual Espresso Maker has certainly shaken things up. This machine isn’t just a coffee maker, it’s a piece of art and a science experiment rolled into one, offering a captivating journey into the world of espresso brewing. Now, let's dive into the specifics and discover why this machine has coffee enthusiasts buzzing.
The first encounter with the Flair 58+ is an experience that sets the tone for the journey you're about to embark on. The packaging is nothing short of great - it's sturdy, secure, and appealingly designed. Unboxing this gem is akin to opening a gift you've been eagerly waiting for. There’s just something about well-done packaging that shows how much thought and care a brand puts into their products.
Once you get past the initial excitement of the unboxing, the foam cutouts come into play. We all know how important it is to keep things organized, especially when dealing with multiple parts. These foam cutouts are perfectly designed to hold each component of the machine snugly. This not only makes for an organized unboxing experience but also ensures that every part arrives in pristine condition.
After the unboxing is the assembly, and this is where the Flair 58+ really shines. The fit and finish of this machine are smooth and clean, reflecting the attention to detail that has gone into its manufacturing. You can feel the quality of the components as you unpack them - Assembly consists of simply screwing the top and bottom parts together.
However, as much as we love the Flair 58+, we must point out a minor detail that could be improved - the tamp. While the tamp is of good quality, we found ourselves wishing it was a bit longer for better control when tamping down the coffee grounds. It's a small detail, but as coffee lovers, we understand that perfection lies in the details.
Now, let’s talk about the learning process. Let's be clear, the Flair 58+ comes with a steep learning curve, but boy, is it fun to use! This isn't just a machine; it's a tool for exploration, a medium through which you can express your love for coffee. You'll find yourself experimenting, tweaking, and adjusting to get that perfect espresso shot.
A standout feature that aids in the learning process is the mirror. This isn't just a stylish addition; it's a practical feature that really helps you see what's happening during the brewing process. It is simple to set up and control, the unit even has a specific place for the magnet to mount.
Speaking of visual aids, the pressure gauge is in a great location. It's easy to alternate your gaze between the mirror and the gauge, allowing you to monitor the brewing process in real time. This feature takes the guesswork out of brewing, making it easier to replicate your best shots and adjust the ones that need a little tweaking.
Getting into the brewing process, we found that it helps to hold the base while using the lever to brew. This technique stabilizes the machine, ensuring a smooth, uninterrupted flow of coffee. Also, we discovered that going slow at first and then ramping up the pressure to between 6 and 9 psi gives the best results. It's all about patience and control (and not to mention the coffee).
Let's talk about the grind. We found that for the best results, the espresso grinds must be very fine, almost like a Turkish coffee grind. This might require some experimentation with your grinder, but the result is well worth the effort. Our first attempt we were unable to get any pressur buildup simple because the grinds were to large.
One of the best parts about the Flair 58+ is how much it encourages you to geek out and get hands-on with your coffee. You’ll find yourself spending hours experimenting with different beans, grinds, and pressures, all in the pursuit of the perfect espresso shot. It’s not just about the end product; it’s about the journey of understanding the nuances of espresso making and the joy of finally crafting that perfect shot.
All in all, the Flair 58+ Manual Espresso Maker is a journey into the world of espresso brewing, one that offers both challenges and rewards. From the great packaging to the foam cutouts, the smooth fit and finish, and the thoughtful addition of the mirror and pressure gauge, the Flair 58+ leaves no stone unturned in its mission to provide an immersive brewing experience.
Despite the slight improvement needed in the tamp and the steep learning curve, the overall experience is rich, fulfilling, and, most importantly, fun. Whether you’re a seasoned barista or a coffee novice looking to step up your home-brewing game, the Flair 58+ is a worthy contender for your consideration.
I hope you found this review helpful and informative. Remember, at the end of the day, coffee brewing is an art, and the Flair 58+ is just the tool you need to paint your masterpiece. Happy brewing!