Owner experience with Bezzera Strega

Need help with equipment usage or want to share your latest discovery?
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JohnB.
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Joined: February 14th, 2008

Postby JohnB. » Dec 26, 2011, 1:11 pm

My Strega worked fine right out of the box & so far I'm quite impressed with the build & finish quality although I do have a few minor quibbles function wise. The reservoir lid definitely needs a lifting handle so you don't have to remove the cup warming tray every time you want to add water. I'm going to make something up later today to remedy that. If you use the hot water wand to draw water you'll want to either wear a mitt or lay a cloth over the container as your fingers will get toasted by the rising steam trying to hold the actuating handle down. Final quibble is the pressure gauge. I have to wonder how much thought went into locating it at drip tray level directly behind the steam wand. I'll bleed & flush the wand into a large cup in the hope that the gauge might survive a few years longer if it isn't getting blasted by steam daily.

I've got the grind dialed in on the K10 & the flush down (HX newbie!) so today the Strega is on while the Speedster is taking a well earned break. I haven't pulled enough shots with the Strega to talk about shot quality yet but with the various greens I roasted Saturday it should be an interesting week.

Just made my first cappa with it this morning & I'm very impressed with the steaming. Steam seems pretty dry & there is plenty of power to get the milk rolling in the locked on position. Microfoam was acceptable for the first try.

The Strega is set up on my roasting table for now as the only space open on the kitchen counter didn't allow for a comfortable position to pull down the lever. Due to having one of my two bicep tendons torn off at the shoulder the much lower position on the table works better for me as I'm pushing down on the lever instead of pulling. While I don't mind refilling the reservoir outside of the minor handle "issue" I will add a drain to the drip tray once I find a permanent location for the Strega. The drip tray couldn't be any easier to remove but I'm just spoiled by never having to think about it with the Speedster.


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LMWDP 267

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farmroast
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Postby farmroast » Dec 26, 2011, 2:52 pm

JohnB. wrote: The reservoir lid definitely needs a lifting handle so you don't have to remove the cup warming tray every time you want to add water.

Doesn't the half moon finger slot on the cup warmer work well enough to open the reservoir lid?
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JohnB.
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Postby JohnB. » Dec 26, 2011, 3:53 pm

OK, removing the cup warmer tray was a bit of an exaggeration but you do have to juggle the cups & baskets to keep the finger slot open. Depends how many cups & baskets you want to leave on the cup warmer tray I guess. Not much space up there so the finger slot gets covered easily. Plus when you reach through to grab the reservoir lid you can easily end up touching the extremely hot surface under the cup warmer tray. As I said it's a minor quibble but I'm going to install a raised handle or tab on the lid so I can free up a little more cup space & avoid toasting the end of my finger.
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kize
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Joined: June 9th, 2011

Postby kize » Dec 26, 2011, 8:31 pm

Final quibble is the pressure gauge. I have to wonder how much thought went into locating it at drip tray level directly behind the steam wand. I'll bleed & flush the wand into a large cup in the hope that the gauge might survive a few years longer if it isn't getting blasted by steam daily.


I thought I was the only one to see this on machines. The rockets are another example. Gauges placed at tray level or just above tray level seem to be destined for replacement from steam and water exposure.

espressotime
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Postby espressotime » Dec 27, 2011, 3:07 am

Also the drip tray is too small.With every flush water goes on to my counter.

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another_jim
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Postby another_jim » Dec 27, 2011, 4:37 am

The drip tray holds a 3/4 liter of water; which works out to about four flushes and run outs for me. Your flushes must be very long;
Jim Schulman

espressotime
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Postby espressotime » Dec 27, 2011, 5:38 am

What I mean is that the water out of the group and sprays over the tray.

Had a Christmas dinner at my home yesterday and the Strega performed very well by the way.
Pulling shots by the number went very well.8 cappu's in a row and no problems with the steam performance.Also almost as fast as an E61 machine.

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Bob_McBob
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Postby Bob_McBob » Dec 27, 2011, 7:46 am

There is practically no difference between the Strega and any other high-end consumer machine for me in terms of speed. Maybe I'd notice more if pulled a lot of back-to-back straight shots. For caps, the group has just depressurized by the time I am finished pouring the milk, and I can remove the portafilter and move on to the next drink.

The drip tray is way too small, both in volume and extension from the body. Mine has a drain hose I was originally planning to remove, but I think it would drive me nuts having to drain it after every few shots. Every time I pull a cooling flush, water goes over the edge of the tray because it doesn't stick out far enough.

The pressure gauge is in a really silly location. I hope it is well-sealed, because it gets condensation on it every time I pull a flush or bleed off steam into the drip tray. No issues after 3-1/2 months of daily use.
Chris

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JohnB.
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Postby JohnB. » Dec 27, 2011, 11:28 am

I solved the drip tray & gauge location issues by pulling my cooling flushes, cleaning flushes & steam wand purging directly into a large (16oz) latte/soup mug. Everything goes into the mug & then I quickly dump the mug into the sink behind me.
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RapidCoffee
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Postby RapidCoffee » Dec 27, 2011, 12:29 pm

Same here. The majority of my flushes (and purges) end up in a 20oz frothing pitcher rather than the drip tray. It's easier to dump and clean the pitcher than the drip tray.

Congrats on your new toy. :)
John

 
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