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Francis!Francis! X1 Ground Espresso Machine

Sometimes an espresso machine is just fun, and that's the case with the Francis!Francis! X1 Ground Espresso Machine. Usually I tend to stay away from the showy machines, but in this case I've been completely won over. Here's why...

Let's Look At The Machine

Francis!Francis! X1 Ground Espresso MachinesDesigned for Illy by Luca Trazzi the world famous designer, this machine is as functional as it is stylish. While the finish of other FrancisFrancis models may be a form of baked on powder coated epoxy, the body of this machine is made entirely of stainless steel giving it a truly solid feel.

Throwing off 1,000 watts of power, the X1 boasts 18 bars of pump powered pressure! A normal espresso machine usually uses 15 bars at best.

I do need to make a special point of saying that this is NOT an E.S.E. pod machine. You CAN use traditional coffee beans (in fact you must use them). These FrancisFrancis! Machines have traditionally been ESE pod machines, which I've never really liked - being a "bean guy" myself, but not this one!

What makes this espresso maker really nice (besides the super cool design) is the fact that it's boiler is made entirely of brass. You really don't see that very often, except in higher-end expensive machines. Brass allows the heat to be distributed more easily (it's more evenly conducted throughout) which leads directly to better tasting espresso every time.

What's more, the brewing head is chrome-plated brass which is another very nice feature.

Most of the time when you see a showy machine like this, it costs a lot simply because it's a novelty and the company knows it can charge a lot for the "wow" factor. That isn't the case with this machine, it's hefty price tag reflects the quality design (things like its brass boiler and chrome-plated brass brewing head). These things are more expensive to produce, making the machine more expensive. But you'll taste that extra quality.

What Other People Are Saying About It

The X1 doesn't have very many reviews from customers at Amazon. The more expensive machines rarely do. The few people that have left reviews have generally been very happy with the machine. One person reported a short out after a year and a half. Another reported problems right out of the box and one other person reported problems after about a year of use. Everyone else gave it 5-stars.

I will point out that the machine comes with a 1-year warranty.

What's The Bottom Line?

Regularly priced at $999 (we've got it on sale below for $699!), this is a pretty expensive machine, especially for a manual machine. For that price you could get a pretty decent automatic machine and have money left over for about six month's worth of coffee beans! But I still think it's worth buying, especially as an art piece.

Let's face it, this is a stunning looking machine. If you're looking to style up your kitchen, this is the machine for you. It *will* turn people's heads. If you do a lot of entertaining, it will certainly be a conversation starter!

The Francis!Francis! X1 Ground Espresso Machine isn't for everyone. But if you've got the money to spare and want a machine that will grab people's attention, then you'll be very happy with this machine. Get the sale price below while supplies last (there were 4 in stock last I checked).