You know that saying "Behind every great man stands a great woman?" Well we say, behind every great barista stands a great espresso machine. We go through so much effort to train our staff to the nines, to bring in only the most stellar coffee, and to make HubBub the place you want to come hang out. But what's it all worth without the right tools? Even the highest quality, single origin espresso can turn sour if made improperly, and that's why our La Marzocco espresso machines - and the baristas who use them - are at the core of our whole operation. Surely you've noticed the GB/5, all shiny stainless steel and the popping-est shade of red, sitting grandly on our bars.
We chose La Marzocco machines for HubBub because they are simply the best; they are a storied manufacturer with great history and unparalleled experience. Their products flawlessly combine workhorse power with the unmistakable aesthetic swagger of Italian design. They are sick, high performance machines, which are just ridiculously fun to use.
Our original machine, installed in the HubBub truck, was a 2 Group La Marzocco Linea. We were so stoked on it that we went for the more souped up GB/5 when we opened our shops at 3LS and Spruce Street. The GB/5's engineering is all about precision: the water that enters the coffee boiler is exactly 170 degrees, and a bunch of complicated components (including a group cap designed by Piero Bambi, the son of the founder of La Marzocco) ensure that the water temperature is stable and consistent throughout the entire brewing process. These guys know what they're doing - they've been manufacturing handcrafted espresso machine and pushing the envelope of coffee innovation since 1927!
It all started with Guiseppe Bambi (don't Italians have the best names?) who designed and crafted espresso machines with his brother Bruno in Florence, Italy in the 1920's. In 1939, they filed a patent for the first espresso machine with horizontal brewing (meaning group heads in a line, the way we're used to seeing them now). Throughout the mid-20th century, they continued growing and innovating -arguably their greatest achievement was the creation of independent boilers, which provide readily available steam or hot water without messing with the temperature of the water used for coffee extraction. This is clutch for the temperature consistency we explained earlier, which is a total necessity for making espresso the right way.
As coffee culture took off in the United States in the 90's, La Marzocco was there, equipping this new breed of shops with their signature strength and utility. Even now, if you find yourself in another top notch cafe that's not HubBub, we'd bet five bucks that there's a La Marzocco model behind the counter. We're obsessed with ours, and feel so lucky to have access to such an incredible tool. If you've never scoped out our GB/5s at either location, take a look next time you're in. They are truly beautiful, special machines.