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  1. #1
    Junior Member
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    I see many coffeehouses are going with superauto machines.

    Presumably to speed up the espresso production line. In my area, I noticed a local Starbucks and the espresso bar at Borders Books have replaced their conventional espresso machines with superautos.

    The result is "espresso" that's more like dark drip coffee than true espresso. Another result is a lost customer.

  2. #2
    Senior Member
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    Apr 2005
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    Modesto, CA
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    some superauto's rock

    Not all superauto's are bad. The worst part about the good one's is the expense. I've considered one for our mobile unit because they can eliminate lots of cleaning and water needs.

    I honestly believe that at least 2 expensive super auto's can produce a mocha, latte or capp that would rival any existing semi using the same espresso bean...

  3. #3
    Junior Member
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    Re: some superauto's rock

    Quote Originally Posted by celement
    I honestly believe that at least 2 expensive super auto's can produce a mocha, latte or capp that would rival any existing semi using the same espresso bean...

    You're probably right about the above; however 95% of the time I order straight espresso shots, so the difference is more notable.

  4. #4
    Senior Member
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    That would explain it

    I think now I understand...there are ony two regular customers at my establishment that take and enjoy straight shots...and an occassional passer by.

  5. #5
    Senior Member
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    Seattle,Washington USA
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    In my humble opinion super automatics have their place, just not in a drive thru. I won't mention any manufacturers, but we've had the experience with a few customers that thought they wanted them, only to find that they are very difficult for the average barista or operator to program or clean properly. Senors have a way of confuzing the untrained operator. Plus they are pretty expensive to work on from the technical side. A couple of customers found this out and went back to the traditionals. I have to say I agree with them. Also keep in mind places like Starbucks can justify the cost of these machines vs additional training and employee costs...
    "A Word of Difference"TM

  6. #6
    Senior Member
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    Aug 2004
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    Des Moines, Iowa
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    I will say this, I do agree that some Super Auto's are just plain troublesome. I have never had any luck with Cimbali's M5x line. Seems like everything either works or it doesn't.

    Now with the M2 it's a whole new game. As for ease of use it really can't get any easier. The only cleaning a person has to do is drop a cleaning tab in, other then wiping off the steam arm. Other then that I haven't had any problems with it. It also makes pretty darn good espresso, and I haven't seen anyone froth milk better then it can!
    Have you ever walked through the aisle of your local grocer and smelled the death of a dying bean?

  7. #7
    Senior Member
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    The main reason to have a fully automatic is that you anticipate high labor turnover. Dunkin Donuts uses automatics, but then they are in the dough and hot brown beverage business, not the espresso business.

    Starbucks, especially some of the licensed operations like those in airports use automatics because of labor issues. Up until now I had thought that they still used semi-automatics in their company owned stores. That is part of what they are selling, even if they think they can get someone up to speed in a day of training.

    Apparently, their labor issues are moving technology as a replacement for training. Economically it might make sense, but only in the short term.

    Product quality is the mermaid's achilles heel. And I thought mermaids didn't have heels.
    Coffee leads men to trifle away their time, scald their chops, and spend their money, all for a little base, black, thick, nasty, bitter, stinking nauseous puddle water. ~The Women's Petition Against Coffee, 1674

  8. #8
    Senior Member
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    Well put JH... I couldn't have put it any better..."A rose by any other name..."
    "A Word of Difference"TM

  9. #9
    Senior Member
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    No actually Starbucks is dumping their machines and moving to super autos because they are less expensive to run, they are becoming cheaper to buy, and the number one reason is because the overall quality has really improved. Its improved enough that it can take on a traditional machine. You are also right, they no longer have that expensive overhead of training new employees to run a traditional machine.
    Have you ever walked through the aisle of your local grocer and smelled the death of a dying bean?

  10. #10
    Senior Member
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    The economics are why farmers use milking machines instead of doing it by hand. Apropos Starbucks sells more milk by volume than coffee. Now all Starbucks needs to do is put a milking machine on people's wallets as they come in the door. Much more efficient.

    Actually, they are bypassing the wallet with the Starbucks Card. Next thing you know, they will be offering payroll deduction for the convenience of consumers to load the Starbucks cards.
    Coffee leads men to trifle away their time, scald their chops, and spend their money, all for a little base, black, thick, nasty, bitter, stinking nauseous puddle water. ~The Women's Petition Against Coffee, 1674

 

 
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