...cue Dawn of Man scene from 2001: A Space Odyssey to the music of Thus Spake Zarathustra by Robert Strauss...
Expobar Brewtus Operating Manual
It's available from The Brewtus Group File Repository. Natually when Whole Latte Love joined the HB sponsors and asked about a Buyer's Guide for their favorite son, Abe was my first choice to review the Expobar Brewtus. After a little arm-twisting (and the threat of publishing some incriminating photographs ), Abe agreed. To assure consistency between reviews, I'll also be checking out Brewtus to confirm Abe's findings, plus contributing some "new owner" perspective.
It arrived today. WLL used foam peanuts for cushioning the inner box, so I decided to unpack it in the garage (otherwise those darn things spill out and stick to anything). Once the inner box was out, extracting the machine was easy, thanks to the split clamshell enclosure:
A firm grip on the machine, then a heave-ho away we go into the kitchen and onto the countertop. Next step is to remove the stainless-steel plastic wrap:
I wish more manufacturers would protect the surface like this for shipment. While it doesn't happen often, sometimes you'll see micro-scratches on unprotected stainless steel from the vibration during transit. Nary a fingerprint on Brewtus except my own. A quick wipe down and voila:
A friend of mine owned an Expobar Lever, which is Brewtus' single-boiler younger brother, so the appearance was very familiar to me, except of course the big digital display.
A glance at the owners manual confirmed the startup sequence. The pump droned on for a long time; I even had to fill up the water tank a second time. As the boilers (plural) warmed up, I went about flipping through the aforementioned manual. The term "comprehensive" doesn't capture its depth. My own reviews are mere pamphlets in comparison.
It was, however, painfully evident that a group of engineers contributed to the wording, organization, and style of this tome. Here's an excerpt that greeted me on page 1:
BSPP threads? Good to know if you plan to mod the machine on arrival, but my plans are less ambitious tonight. Anyway, if you're impatient, skip ahead 12 pages, bypassing techno-wonders like the introduction to Brewtus' anatomy and the schematic of internal parts, to arrive at the mundane but practical Preparing the Machine for Start Up.Fittings on the boilers are BSPP thread of various sizes and consist of the following...
I checked on Brewtus an hour later. The display proudly announces the boiler temperature:
Despite my gentle ribbing about the manual's level of detail, I have no doubt it will be a treasure trove of information. But I'm intentionally skipping a careful reading for a couple days because I want to enjoy a little discovery on my own. Tonight there's some test beans with Brewtus' name on 'em. Tomorrow I'll begin with some of the good stuff (Intelligentsia's Black Cat and Counter Culture Coffee's Toscano).