Barcelona-based espresso machine manufacturer Ascaso Factory unveiled The Big Dream at the World of Coffee in Amsterdam last week, earning the 56-year-old company the Best New Product Award for Commercial Equipment.
Ascaso claims the Big Dream is the first espresso machine in the world to replace 100 percent of its internal components with stainless steel. By replacing copper and brass with stainless steel, the company said the Big Dream is designed to offer a more hygienic, more sustainable, and more efficient product with simpler maintenance requirements beneath its curved, retro-style polyurethane case. Its backlit 4.2-inch high-definition capacitive LCD display also contains some innovations of its own.
With smartphone-like responsiveness, the LCD panel on the Big Dream provides information and control over each independent group, cup warmers, boilers and more. Beyond showing temperatures and timers, the display lets users set schedules and turn components on and off for energy conservation, check performance and maintenance records, automate cleaning procedures and adjust various lighting options, among other actions.
Ascaso expanded from manufacturing spare parts for espresso machines into making complete consumer and professional machines roughly 20 years ago. The Big Dream is the result of four years of development by a team of engineers who endeavored to update the technology of previous Ascaso machines. Aesthetically, the Big Dream builds upon the Ascaso Dream single-group home espresso machine line with a durable, versatile Baydur polyurethane shell with rounded edges and bright colors available. Stainless steal is used for all components that make contact with water.
With its longer history and extensive catalog of espresso machine parts, careful consideration was given to such details as tubing, joints, and seals. The heating elements are stainless steel, for example, and the group gaskets are HNBR with a slightly conical surface, making for what the company claims is a smoother on/off connection with the portafilter and a lifetime twice as long as conventional rubber group gaskets.
“We thoroughly believed in this concept and have dedicated more than four years in bringing it to fruition,” Ascaso Factory CEO José Luis Ascaso in a press release announcing the WOC win. “We’re very excited to have earned this type of recognition at World of Coffee.”
Ascaso said that energy savings yielded from so much steel construction could be upwards of 40 percent compared to traditional machines. The company also said that this update will eliminate limescale build up — the cause of 70 percent of all espresso machine repairs, according to Ascaso.
(Note: Daily Coffee News Associate Editor Howard Bryman contributed to this story.)