Coffee geeks, you’re about to get another playground. La Marzocco, the company that almost certainly made the machines cranking out espresso in at least one of your favorite coffee shops, is opening its very first café in Seattle. The 90-year-old Florentine company has repeatedly revolutionized the act of pulling an espresso shot with inventions like the first hydro-compression machines back in the ‘60s and the only coffee grinder to automatically tamp your grounds in 2013. It also made the official machine of the World Barista Championships for eight years. But with price tags that can run over $10,000, the equipment is prohibitive for most coffee fans.
With this new space, La Marzocco hopes to make its high-end machines more accessible to the masses. Guests can get a hands-on experience with the current generation of elite machinery—both commercial and home—in the attached showroom and also explore many vintage La Marzocco pieces to see how the technology has evolved. And don’t worry, there will be baristas on hand to guide people through the process. These are the Ferraris of the coffee world; you don’t want to get behind the wheel without a bit of preparation.
The café will also feature the machines in action, as every month there will be a new roaster in residence. “This is a café experience unlike anything else that exists—we are essentially allowing our coffee partners to come in and launch a new café in our space each month,” Whitney Cornell, La Marzocco Vice President of Sales and Marketing said. The roasters in residence program will kick off with Stumptown from across the border in Oregon. Other confirmed roasters making their way to Seattle will be G&B from Los Angeles; Counter Culture from Durham, North Carolina; Buna from Mexico City and Intelligentsia from Chicago.
If you have a coffee bucket list, you should probably add a stop down at Seattle Center. The La Marzocco café opens at 7am Saturday April, 16. For a schedule of upcoming roasters and events check out lamarzoccousa.com or follow the café on twitter.