La Pavoni Europiccola Lever Espresso Machine UK Review 

 November 7, 2018

By  Enda McLarnon

Thanks for taking the time to read our UK review of the very high end La Pavoni Europiccola Lever Espresso machine. Anyone considering buying this espresso machine, should really view this as a lifetime purchase.

The people who tend to purchase this machine do so for one of three reasons, all of which are perfectly justified. Those are:

  1. Someone who truly loves their coffee and wants the perfect espresso
  2. Someone who has grown tired of buying expensive coffee machines, only to find they also have a limited lifetime before something goes wrong
  3. Any coffee lover who loves to entertain and serve high quality coffee to their guests, with a little drama and a sense of fun

As you can see from the image below, the La Pavoni Europiccola Lever Espresso machine is a thing of beauty, that makes amazing espresso and cappuccinos quickly and easily.

If you know about the La Pavoni range of products, then you will have a good idea that this is not going to be a cheap purchase. You should however be able to pick this particular model up for under £600.

These machines are however built like tanks and will last forever if treated properly. This type of machine is classed as a pressure profiling pump machine.

La Pavoni Europiccola Lever Espresso Machine

La Pavoni Brand

The name sounds Italian and La Pavoni are indeed an Italian brand based in Milan, Italy. This brand leads the way in these elegant type of traditional lever coffee pressure machines.

They began as far back as 1905, when they made their first coffee machine known as the "Ideale." The brand name La Pavoni translates into English as "Espresso Worldwide."

Like many brands the name comes from the founder Desiderio Pavoni who made the first bar coffee machine.

How Does this Europiccola Lever Machine Work?

If you have ever heard of the term, "pulling an espresso" then this is exactly what this machine does by means of using a lever. Back in the day, when espresso first became popular, espressos were pulled like this in coffee bars.

Over time the consumer market wanted this process to be automated. That caused manufacturers to rethink, and once that was done, then a whole range of automated coffee makers were launched on to the market.

This machine is however a return to the traditional method of espresso making.

If you have not used a machine like this before, then it will take a few tries to get your espresso the way that you like it. That can be mildly frustrating at the beginning, and it is simply best to use this experience at the start, as a learning procedure.

Once the technique is mastered you will struggle to find a better espresso anywhere.

The Component Parts of the Europiccola

These types of coffee machine don't have a water reservoir. The water goes straight into a boiler. In there a heating element heats the water, and the boiler pressurises the water.

This pressure is then released by pulling the lever up and then down slowly.

The portafilter contains the coffee grounds. When the lever action is lifted, the water in the boiler enters what is called the "brewing group." There it mixes with the colder water, wets the coffee and stays there until it reaches the correct temperature. (92 degrees Celsius)

That process is known as the "pre-infusion" process, a feature that is always used in the very expensive machines.

When the lever is then pulled down slowly it forces the pressurised water through the coffee grains to make your espresso.

How Buyers Rate the Europiccola Lever Espresso Machine

  • Overall buyers have rated this coffee machine with an 90% buyer satisfaction rating
  • 54% of all buyers have given this machine a full 5 star rating
  • No buyers gave this machine a bad rating

What Buyers Said About this Machine

We know the rating score and that score is considered to be a very good score, but certainly not exceptional. Just below we look at what buyers didn't like and also at what buyers did like.

What Buyers Didn't Like

At the high price there are not a great deal of buyers for this type of machine. As a result there are not a lot of buyer reviews to go on. We found about 6 bad reviews online at different websites.

Here are the reasons they left a bad review:

  • Buyers didn't like waiting 10 minutes for the boiler to heat up
  • They disliked the fact that all the water is in the boiler and when it finishes using the water and perhaps the steam to steam the milk, it then needs to be taken apart and refilled with water
  • A few buyers said the whole process is manual and the steam is dangerous if not handled very carefully
  • A few buyers said it started to leak, and in the future they were certain parts would need replacing

Based on this we would highly recommend that you only consider this machine if you fully understand what it does. This is definitely not a fast way of making coffee, and it does take a lot of time and patience to get the hang of the entire process.

What Buyers Did Like About this Machine

  • Almost every single buyer loved the striking appearance of this machine
  • Most buyers said this was a very good build quality and that it was built like a tank
  • When buyers figured it out, then they fell in love with the whole process that sits behind creating an espresso with a great crema
La Pavoni Europiccola Lever Espresso Machine

Europiccola Lever Specification

For those who like their technical details, we have included those just below.

Personally I worked in the engineering trade for quite a number of years. Now if you simply leave aside the design, and the shining chrome, you always get down to the basic component parts of this machine.

In essence it is a boiler, a thermostat, a piston attached to a lever and a portafilter.

The boiler heats the water inside a contained unit and when the water turns to steam, that creates the pressure.

The thermostat controls the temperature to the ideal one for making espresso coffee.

The lever is attached to a piston, which pushes the hot water through very fine coffee grains and creates the espresso we all desire.

Inside the box you get:

  • The machine
  • 2 filter baskets
  • A portafilter
  • Drip try and drip tray grid
  • Auto cappuccino frother
  • Instruction manual
  • Handles for the portafilter and lever
  • The boiler which is made of brass holds 0.8 litres of water
  • Can make up to 8 espressos without having to refill the boiler
  • Has an interchangeable steam wand and automatic cappuccino device
  • Measures 20 x 32 x 29 cm
  • Weighs 5 Kg
  • 1,000 watts of power
  • Available in stainless steel/chrome or with a black base if you prefer

Our Verdict on the La Pavoni Europiccola Lever Coffee Machine

Please note that this is not a commercial machine and would be useless in any type of cafe or restaurant. This one is designed for home use and for someone who has enough time on their hands to enjoy the experience.

  • This is not for everyone and it can take some time to master the technique for using this machine
  • I tested this machine out, under the watchful eye of the owner who enjoyed me getting wrong several times before showing me the art of using this machine
  • It does make great espresso if you know how to use it.

Her advice was to relax and just enjoy the experience. Use high quality coffee and make sure the beans are fresh. Use a high quality burr grinder to grind the coffee to a very fine grain.

Let the machine properly heat up 10-15 minutes. 

Treat each shot as a new one - let it heat again, build up the pressure and then make a second espresso and repeat as necessary.

As one buyer rightly described the La Pavoni Europiccola, this is a temperamental Italian genius.

Enda McLarnon

Enda McLarnon has a Business Management Honour's Degree and applies his professional insight, to analyse and write helpful product reviews with tips and useful advice. I am also a coffee lover and enjoy tasting all of the coffee types the world has to offer.

Enda McLarnon

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