La Marzocco KB90
The KB90 is the 90th anniversary machine for La Marzocco.
Not only is it a huge success for a high-quality-only machine company to get to 90 years of operation, but to get there while facing more competition than ever in the industry is impressive, while still managing to bring out industry-leading innovation in their newest features.
To name but a few of the key new releases that are real game-changers, see the below.
La Marzocco KB90 Features
– Straight-in portafilters – saving baristas from wrist tension, tendonitis and repetitive strain injuries, particularly important in high output sites such as city centre spots and sites near transport hubs.
– Steam cleaning for group heads, saving on both energy and water usage by distributing steam that has already been created out to the shower head of the group, loosening particulate with more effect than extra water normally would
– Removal of group gaskets – yearly maintenance on espresso machines requires a change of the rubber or silicon gasket in each group head. Usually these parts do not go on to be reused, or recycled, and La Marzocco have addressed this by removing the need for one at all, replacing it with a unique piston system that locks portafilters in place more securely than a gasket ever did.
– Algorithm for coffee drips – something La Marzocco introduce to their machines with built-in scales (ABR technology) has become more accurate following their usage of data from machines out in the field, and feedback experienced. The machines are now able to predict exactly when to stop distributing water over your ground coffee in order to assure even higher levels of accuracy in the amount of espresso brewed into the cup. This is now algorithmic and you are able to improve it over time based upon barista technique, ground coffee profile and more. Think of it as the most precise water dosing you’ve seen to date!
– No loose portafilters when brewing. Now barista cannot accidentally waste coffee due to poor insertion of the group handle into the group head. No wasted espresso liquid due to accidental and barely noticeable error; no wasted labour time due to said problem, and less wasted coffee most importantly. The new piston and straight-in portafilter system prevents brewing under a scenario where things are not properly inserted, and prevents aggression from baristas ever being a quality control issue. No accidental spitting and less impact due to stressed out work. Excellent all-round.
In addition to these game-changers, we also see the machine featuring some of the most important things that already exist in other espresso machines of their range such as:
– Steam valves being serviceable from outside the machine, no need for engineers to interrupt service while they repair wands, controls or alter the steam pressure for baristas.
– Steam control now super ergonomic, with adjustable play to perfect barista technique (not that you’d need to adapt it – it is already smooth and simple)
– Programmability more detailed, controllable and simply excellent all-round. As expected, pre-infusion and brew by weight calibration is intuitive and easily done too.
– Cool touch steam wands – not a new or unique feature to the KB90 but another one that is a big win for any machine’s ergonomics. It saves a lot of staff discomfort and improves the hygiene in any shop immediately.
Most Linea PB users will see the KB90 extremely easy to adapt to, but it does have a new board and set of firmware designed exclusively for newer La Marzocco machines (KB90, Strada ABR, and Linea PB ABR). The system is bespoke to their needs and created by Lumineer.
Internally we also see a new board for controlling the solenoids in the machine. More valves are housed in the machine to integrate the new group steam cleaning sequence, the ergonomic steam system and for management of the updated brew-by-weight algorithm. The new board houses a new relay too for anyone wondering about further internal changes to the technology.
Further to the above part additions, the gigleur group head parts are now changeable without removing the machine’s lid – another win for engineers in quick servicing. The orientation of the KB90 machine’s ABR drip tray sections are interchangeable now too, where previously with the PB ABR baristas were required to replace trays in exactly the correct way to ensure that scales worked as expected. A simple change to the build that saves a lot of confusion following accidental cleaning error, which will hopefully see a few puzzled baristas avoiding unexpected issues in early mornings.
For more info on the machine and perhaps even a demo at the London or Leeds office of La Marzocco, get in touch with us with the buttons below and we’ll see how we’re fixed to help out with any needs you might have. For such a feat of innovation, it really is worth having a show and tell to feel the full effect it could have on your coffee shop, restaurant or multi-site business.
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