[SOLD] 2015 Salvatore Compact Lever (Washington, DC)

Used espresso or coffee stuff you hope to sell or buy.
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#1: Post by russel »

Anyone interested in this? This was made for me as part of the initial introduction of this machine in 2015, so it has my name in Shapie on the inside of some of the body panels. It's spent its entire life as one of many espresso machines, so it's really only seen sporadic use a few months at a time.

I purchased it as an old school analog alternative to my Synesso with plans of switching that out for a Decent. I recently settled into using my Robot as an even simpler espresso making methods, and by chance I stumbled into a Astra GA that's receiving a gearpump/raspberry pi mod.

I think I'm finally ready to find this a better home. It does have a bit of sentimental value...I'd been working in specialty coffee for a few years when I stopped by Salvatore's work shop on a road trip up the California coast and he and his crew were the first coffee-business people I'd met (other than my Demitasse familty) who were actually excited by the presence of our small children!

As a heavy head spring lever this is a very particular sort of machine that makes espresso in a very particular sort of way. The big spring group offers a lot of control and flexibility within a shot, but at the expense of "automated" shot-shot consistency (the more elaborate your short routine the more you are the source of consistency). As an example, while trying to match the output of my Robot I was using a slightly looser grind than the spring naturally wanted, so after a short bit of boiler pressure pre-infusion I found myself engaging the spring while resisting the most of its pressure until I could feel puck begin to better resist or "bite" back, after which I could let the shot run nice and long for my 1:3-ish light roast shots. With a pump machine doing something similar is a lengthy process of semi-permanently adjusting inlet pressure, boiler pressure, pump pressure, flush routines, wetting delays, stepped flow/pressure profiles, or often nothing at all because most sub 2000USD machines just don't offer enough control. The down side is that every shot relies on the barista to get it right every time while a tuned pump machine is set and forget (at least until you change beans).

  • Big copper boiler
  • Cool-touch steam and hot water
  • Fully boxed frame = super stable, which matters a lot on a small machine sporting a full size commercial spring group
  • Runs on a 110v/15amp circuit
  • Direct plumb with auto fill - fill is the only bit of electronics on the machine, every things else if mechanical/electro-mechanical
  • Full size Sirai commercial pstat
  • E61 steam and hot water knobs - I like knobs more than little levers and had these added as part of the build
  • Machined stepped feet - another customization, much nicer than the standard little cylinder feet on most prosumers
  • Bottomless Portafilter
SO, this is probably not a machine for everyone, but it's very satisfying if it's the machine for you. It's not too big, but it's really heavy, so it's pick up/drop off only in the DC metro area. These are currently 3300USD new before customizations and shipping, I'm hoping to get 2000USD for this early example.
russel at anacidicandbitterbeverage dot com