Requesting Advice - VA Athena Leva?

A haven dedicated to manual espresso machine aficionados.
Napa Dave
Posts: 20
Joined: 1 year ago

#1: Post by Napa Dave »

All -

A newbie here - just registered. Have two questions for the esteemed experts here.

For those with any experience with the VA Athena Leva, how would you characterize espressos pulled on that machine?

Follow up question - what are the best espresso beans on the market for a spring lever machine (assuming that makes a difference, doesn't matter)? Best purchased locally, or overseas?

Appreciate the input and guidance.

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Team HB
Posts: 6616
Joined: 19 years ago

#2: Post by Jeff »

Welcome Dave!

"Best espresso beans on the market" is going to get you an answer per person, probably even with qualifying your tastes and the tastes of whoever you might be serving to.

With a quality lever machine and a good grinder, you'll have a wider range of choices than would someone with an entry-level grinder and machine.

The hunt for best Italian roasted coffee beans is a great discussion about classic espresso. It has lead to a forum member here starting to import Saka, one of the board favorites in that genre.

On the other end of the spectrum I'll throw Manhattan (Netherlands) out as an example of well-developed, very light roasts that make great espresso. It is a completely different experience than the classic espresso, or even second- and third-wave espresso. Some think it is nectar, others, battery acid.

There's probably 101 popular options in between that the fans consider to be "the best" for their tastes, equipment, and skills.

Napa Dave (original poster)
Posts: 20
Joined: 1 year ago

#3: Post by Napa Dave (original poster) »

Thank you Jeff. Will be sure to check that out.

Regarding the Athena Leva, do you have a point of view on the machine?