Some of you may have already seen this on Coffeegeek forum, that there was a Crossland CC1 road test organized and was just started not too long ago.This road test is a voluntary review of the machine, with no benefits whatsoever tied to the reviewers. It intends to give an unbiased review and impression on the machine. I am lucky enough to participate in this event(along with a few fellow bloggers here I believe).
If you still have not heard of this machine, it is actually a Taiwanese espresso machine named Gee, that was received and redesigned by Bill Crossland, the engineer of the famous LM GS3. The original Gee Espresso Machine was said to have temperature instability along with a few other issues. With this redesign, hopefully we will have a game-changing player in the field of espresso machine under $1k.
The main feature of this machine was to have PID integrated to control brewing temperature, without the need of temp surfing. Then, it has enhanced-thermoblock steaming, that uses the hot water from the brew boiler, that eventually and hopefully will improve the notorious steaming ability of thermoblock. Because of this feature, the brew boiler temperature wouldn’t be affected big time like other single boiler (SBDU) machine. Did I mention it has a 17oz(500ml) brew boiler, as compared to 12oz of Silvia? This could mean a more stable intrashot brewing temperature than Silvia. Also, it has some other neat features like preinfusion and shot timer etc.
Honestly, my first impression of this machine when it was announced was that it’s just another fancy espresso machine with a factory-integrated PID. Suffice to say that I wasn’t impressed with the thermoblock steaming too because the steaming on Gaggia was quite satisfactory for me at that time.
However, after CC1 was officially on market and there were more features revealed with videos uploaded, I became more convinced that this could be a great machine. I would like to be able to recommend this machine to newbies that came to the forum with budget under $1k asking for purchase advice, without any hesitation. As you can see, this is the main reason I volunteer myself for the CC1 review and that I have high hope for it.
Currently, I am the next one in line for the machine and probably will receive it by somewhere next week. So, for now, I have done a few efforts on my part to make this road test experience even more worthwhile. I’ve placed an order on Baratza Preciso, which is the commonly recommended in-the-budget espresso grinder on the forums. Then, I have also ordered a few lbs of coffee, namely High Jump from Deep Cello, El Salvador SO from Klatch, Bonsai Blend from Velton, and a few other coffees that I am familiar with in the freezer. On top of that, I have my Mazzer Major and Pharos, paired with Cremina for comparison. So, I am all set for the arrival of CC1!
If you guys have any suggestion or opinion of what else to test/improve, do let me know! Maybe a few more suggestion for some finicky coffees that I should try?