For the last month, coffee enthusiasts of all stripes have been submitting writing, drawings, videos, pictures, and songs to Linea Love, a La Marzocco USA campaign to celebrate the La Marzocco Linea. Since 1990, the Linea has been the heart of so many cafes around the world, pumping and pumping, day in and day out, while shaping generations of quality-focused baristas.
Your Sprudge Editors were tapped by our partners at LM USA to produce a series of video interviews with leading folks in the industry who’ve developed a special bond with the La Marzocco Linea. These interviews feature some of the brightest coffee minds we know: Stephen Vick of Blue Bottle Coffee, 2004 USBC Champion Bronwen Serna, Mindy Farley of the North Portland’s own The Red E Cafe (a Sprudge.com editorial favorite), Skip Colombo of Stumptown Coffee Roasters, Devin Chapman of Coava Coffee Roasters, Andrew Barnett of Caffe Linea, Alex Powar of Four Barrel Coffee, and Nick Cho of Wrecking Ball Coffee Roasters.
Here they are, in all of their steaming glory.
Stephen Vick, of Blue Bottle Coffee, talks about his memories with the La Marzocco Linea, including the legendary 5-Group Linea from Seattle’s Hines Public Market Coffee (closed in 2005). Learn more about dear departed Hines Public Market in this adorable Mark Prince feature from 2003.
Bronwen Serna, 2004 USBC Champion, also worked for Hines Public Market in Seattle with Stephen Vick. Read her full essay here!
Mindy Farley, co-owner and manager at The Red E Cafe in Portland, Oregon has worked on the Linea for over a decade – first at the Albina Press (another landmark cafe in North Portland) and now at her own cafe up the road.
We spoke with Skip Colombo, Senior Account Manager at Stumptown Coffee Roasters. Skip has worked on a Linea since his days at the Fresh Pot sixteen years ago.
Two-time consecutive Northwest Regional Barista Champion Devin Chapman of Coava Coffee Roasters works on a custom black Linea. Clearly he is stoked about it.
Andrew Barnett, the legendary green coffee buyer, roaster, and now owner of Caffe Linea in San Francisco, first set his eyes on a La Marzocco Linea at CoffeeFest in 1993. David Schomer of Espresso Vivace was pulling shots, and the cosmos shifted ever so slightly. Read Mr. Barnett’s full essay here!
Young buck Alex Powar works on a La Marzocco Linea at Four Barrel Coffee in San Francisco, where he’s an educator for both staff and wholesale clients.
Nick Cho, of Wrecking Ball Coffee Roasters in San Francisco, had Lineas at his murky coffee locations in Washington, DC. An impressive and diverse array of coffee professionals worked on these murky machines, including 2012 USBC Champion Katie Carguilo, Ultimo Coffee owner Aaron Ultimo, noted NYC hair stylist Janet Konz, Ryan Goodrow of Four Barrel, Peregrine Espresso owner Ryan Jensen, David Nigel Flynn of Frog Fight fame, and Sprudge.com co-founder Zachary Carlsen.
In need of some more Linea Lovin’? Check out these other great submissions from the last few weeks:
Conrad Altman, Sr
Roast Coffee Company
Jimmy The Chop
Lars Kolstad Huse
“There’s nothing else like it. It’s beautiful, simple, approachable, reliable, and, surprisingly, affordable. The Linea has made it possible for coffee-loving dreamers to start their own shops without settling for lousy equipment or breaking the bank.” – Chris Elliott
“The coffee culture of cafes, drive-thrus, stands, stalls, and carts from that era captured my boyhood imagination. Above all espresso carts – many of whom were equipped with a Linea. There was something magical about the lone barista serving up hot coffee to a long line of appreciative customers on the sidewalk.” – Chris Phelps
“Years later, working now in training and education, the Linea still remains my number one recommendation for coffee bars to consider when pricing out equipment. Minor tweaks here and there to the machine (PID! Vacuum breakers!) have given polite finesse to this non-stop workhorse, still at an incredible value.” – Jesse Raub
“Walking up to a Linea, a barista feels empowered. There is no confusion about it. On, off, rinse, repeat. All day. Break it down, clean it, and start over. It is ready to handle more than you can give it. You will wear out before it does.” – Tony Querio
Check out the rest of the drawings, photos, essays, and more at LineaLove.com. La Marzocco’s next-generation Linea PB will be unveiled at the grand SCAA Event in Boston in just a few short weeks.