As one longtime Pike/Pine coffee roaster plans an inter-neighborhood move, a business involved in another aspect of coffee manufacturing is making its debut just down the block.
“I wanted to build a machine that was designed by a technician, not an engineer”
Two well-established espresso experts quietly launched their custom commercial espresso machine business MAVAM Espresso last month underneath Vermillion on 11th Ave amid Pike/Pine’s fertile coffee roasting grounds.
MAVAM co-founder Michael Gregory Myers is no stranger to working under the hood of coffee shop espresso machines. He spends his days servicing coffee appliances as the second generation partner of Seattle’s Michaelo Espresso parts and service company.
For two years, Myers has spent his free time in the 11th Ave underground shop building a machine that comes as close as possible to maintaining perfect temperature stability. The key, he says, is ensuring that the machine’s boiler, piping, and head components all maintain an even temperature to ensure maximum consistency pour to pour.
As someone who spends his time servicing machines, Myers said designing an easily serviceable product was also a top priority.
“I wanted to build a machine that was designed by a technician, not an engineer,” he said.
While the small MAVAM machine shop has no public-facing component, plans are in the works to open a showroom and cafe on Capitol Hill later this year.
A year ago, Terry Ziniewicz joined Myers to help perfect other components of his machine and get the product ready to sell. Ziniewicz, a Seattle espresso pioneer and founder of espressoparts.com, said MAVAM would be ready to start shipping machines in the coming months. They’re already taking pre-orders from as far away as Australia.
So far, MAVAM has two machines ready for preorder. The Mach 1 is a traditional countertop espresso machine built to meet “the demands of the busy drive thru and cafe operation while maintaining strict temperature stability.” The Under Counter model is a low profile machine designed to put the theater of pulling a shot on full-display.
While MAVAM is just getting underway, Myers and Ziniewicz said they’ve found it difficult to break the stronghold Italian manufacturers like La Marzocco and LavAzza have on the local market. “There’s a complacency in the industry,” Ziniewicz said.
For espresso savants, here’s a rundown of some of the temperature control specs on MAVAM’s Mach 1 model:
Water for the brew groups is preheated via heat exchangers in our 11 liter (2 group) and 19 liter (3 group) copper steam boiler helping to reduce scale and improve temperature stability.
PID Controlled 316 Stainless steel mixing boiler addresses the issues surrounding scale (mineral deposits) by reducing the areas where cold and hot water mix.
Temperature stability is the name of the game when brewing espresso and the MACH 1 maintains temperature as per the WBC temperature testing protocol and beyond! We maintain temperature from as little as 60ml of brewing water all the way to 1.2 liters. Not an easy task…. but we like challenges.
Heated 316 Stainless steel group heads complete the cycle of delivering temperature stable brew water to the coffee.
MAVAM’s arrival comes as Espresso Vivace plans to make its move to a space underneath the Garage at Broadway and E Union. With no retail component to help pay the rent and demand for space at a premium, founder David Schomer told CHS he knew his time on 11th Ave might also be limited.
For what it’s worth, Schomer thinks the MAVAM machines pull a mean shot, offering “top drawer extraction.”
Learn more at mavamespresso.com