The Slayer Espresso coffee machine review

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Today it’s (finally) the turn of talking about the Slayer Espresso Coffee Machine.

Slayer is a high-end coffee machine manufacturer founded in 1997 by Jason Prefontaine in Seattle, USA. It has been revolutionising the speciality coffee industry since the very beginning, raising the third wave, especially in the USA.

The mission is still the same, make coffee better through innovation and design as key elements. Its main goal is to change the way coffee is extracted by controlling the flow rate introducing the patented needle valve technology.

They divide the extraction into two stages giving so much importance at the pre-infusion which has a huge impact on the flavours. That’s what the company call “flavour profiling”.

The company was then bought in 2017 by LaCimbali, a famous Italian manufacturer of commercial espresso machines.

LaCimbali decided to keep the two brands separate so in case you want to know more about the company you can keep searching on the web for “Slayer”.

Turning to design, the Slayer Espresso Coffee Machine offers an unlimited range of customization (they are at the very top with this along with Kees Van Der Westen), collaborating with the same person who joined the company since 2007. But let’s just keep this for later.

Now it’s time to talk about the Slayer espresso.

Main Features of Slayer Espresso Coffee Machine

  • A patented needle valve: let’s start with the main one. Barista can control the water flow by adjusting the water pressure during coffee extraction; what happens it’s a slower or faster extraction according to how much pressure you decide to go. Bear in mind that with the Slayer the coffee grounds can be wet for more than 30 seconds.
    Especially with the pre-infusion, there’s an increase of volume during the first seconds bringing out all the good flavours and complexity in the cup. A small amount of water comes out into the group to wet and fully saturate the coffee grounds that are inside the portafilter; that’s a slower pre-infusion (more than 5 seconds) compared to most of the competitors’ commercial coffee machines.
    This helps to achieve an even extraction with finer grounds of coffee, avoiding most of the finer particles to settle down to the bottom of the basket (fines migration) and an increase of the total dissolved solids in the cup (TDS) which means more sweetness in the cup;
  • dedicated boilers: there are a pre-heat tank and a tank for every group of the machine. Taking the water from a separated tank allows brewing coffee consistently with a stable temperature. Boilers are also equipped with a dedicated PID to ensure accuracy of the brew temperature within 0.5° F;
  • paddle with three options: keeping the paddle in the middle and you are in the pre-brew stage. Here’s the flow rate is restricted as I said before and water is directed through the patented needle valve to slower the pre-infusion; on the left, there’s the full pressure option in which the flow rate is increased simply by an increase of pressure. Over on the right and you just close the flow. Keep in mind that the needle valve can be regulated at your desire so you can adjust it by the flow rate that matches better your fine coffee grounds;
  • bottomless portafilters: Slayer provides us with 58-millilitre naked chromo-plated, brass portafilters ideal to work with speciality coffee with a medium to light roast coffee, using a dose up to 20 grams;
  • showers: screen showers are Teflon coated and a mirror close to the tray is ready to show us all the entire extraction. That’s a good idea I never have seen before in every competitors’ commercial coffee machines;
  • customization: there’s no standard customization. There’s plenty of different customization with different colours and materials you can choose from such as leather or wood.

In this model, there’s no possibility to brew by weight (you need to use your scales if you want to be accurate) but just the manual option.

It’s been then finally featured with the volumetric option in the new models.

How much is a Slayer Espresso Machine?

The Slayer Espresso comes in one, two or three groups. The capacity of the steam boiler is 3,3 7,4 and 12 respectively while the capacity of the coffee boiler is 1,1 and 1,2 for the two and three groups. The pre-heat tank is 60 millilitres, 3.3 litres and 5.4 litres respectively.

That’s all about the Slayer Espresso. Bear in mind that with Slayer you can just choose the machine that fits better your needs. In case you are going to make lots of milk beverages,  try to consider the Slayer Steam with its hottest steamer on the market, for a more accurate, drier milk microfoam.

For more info have a look on this link: https://slayerespresso.com/steam-box-set/

Needless to say that it’s not only about having a piece of great equipment; you can drive a supercar but if you don’t have great brakes and tires you’re not going too far. Same with coffee. You will need speciality coffee if you want to highlight the complexity of those beans, a good water filtration system such as Brita, BWT or Everpure, a great grinder on-demand such as the Mythos One, and so on. And not to mention the barista

The Slayer machines are still made in Seattle, Washington. At the moment there are only two models available: the Slayer Espresso and the Slayer Steam. In the USA the price starts from US$ 18,000 (for two groups) and with all the possible customizations it can reach more than US$ 35,000. Slayer is selling more machines in the USA but the company has carved out a pretty good slice of the market in Asia and the Asia Pacific. Other models are coming out soon and are now ready for pre-orders. Check out the Steam Box Set to keep updating yourself about the news of the new models.

Bottom Line

I truly hope to see more of these models out also in Europe and I’m looking forward to trying these newly announced models to see what the investment made by the two brands are bringing to the coffee scene.

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