Pardon My French: The Bravura Press Offers a Large-Volume Solution for CafesFFOL Editor 1
A new piece of brewing equipment is targeting the many cafes and restaurants enamored of, but perhaps frustrated by, the classic full-immersion French press brew method.
The Bravura Press has launched as a French press-style brewing machine that aims to yield higher volumes of brew for coffee retailers. In addition to volume, the machine’s makers also pitch commercially critical brew consistency and ease of cleaning.
The design and build of the Bravura Press originated from Huron, Ohio-based roasting company Storm Mountain Coffee Roasters, which was looking for a solution for its wholesale clients.
“The idea stemmed with the frustration of our coffee not tasting at our clients’ locations as good as it did at our roastery,” Storm Mountain Coffee Roasters Co-Founder and Bravura Press CEO, President and Co-Inventor Julie Spitzley told Daily Coffee News. “Our favorite brew style was and is a French press. We find it the most truthful way to brew our coffee to reveal each growing microclimate, the plantations’ practices and the roasters’ profile development. But nothing existed on the commercial level for obvious reasons: Messiness, time-constraints, low volume.”
Spitzley and co-inventor Shamus Spitzley head the Bravura Press company, working with several partner agencies for design and manufacturing services, and board member John McCann, a former executive of DeLonghi and Saeco USA.
“Rarely does art and science meet, but it has with Bravura Press,” McCann told DCN. “I partnered with the Bravura team because of the combination of the unique innovation and the elegant design. This is the next evolution of coffee consumption in the world. The board and management team are very excited about the future of the company.”
The Bravura performs a full-immersion brew exactly like a traditional French press, but with some operational upgrades. Users load the grounds into a detachable bottom assembly that looks and acts like a portafilter, then they use a lever to lift and secure the bottom part onto the machine. Water that is heated to between 196-204°F then fills the brewer.
To finish the brew, users press a robust plunger down in traditional French press fashion, forcing a steel metal mesh filter downward, capturing and enclosing the grounds down below the output hole through which the finished brew drains. A spout swings out from the bottom assembly for positioning over an urn or press-pot; then users twist a knob on the bottom assembly handle to open a valve and drain the brewer.
The filter detaches from the plunger and remains on top of the grounds so that as the user raises the plunger backup, a silicone gasket can scrub the walls of the large steel brewer as it travels upward, without dragging any spent grounds along with it. The bottom chamber cleans with a rinse.
Said Julie Spitzley, “The food-grade stainless steel mesh on the filter screen is slightly finer than the traditional French press mesh, but not so fine that it is too difficult to push through the coffee.”
With wooden handles and optional leather wraps that can feature the owner’s branding, the machine is also designed to provide an aesthetic experience suitable for front-of-house installation.
Users can choose to brew full or half pots, generating a maximum of 12 cups in under seven minutes, while water is heated on demand for each brew, potentially resulting in energy savings, according to the company.
The Bravura Press costs $7,150 and is available now.
Howard Bryman is the associate editor of Daily Coffee News by Roast Magazine. He is based in Portland, Oregon.