Coffee Works Express explains why the Wega Polaris Tron and Pegaso espresso machines are tried and tested models that have become mainstays in the Australian coffee landscape.
In 2015, independent importer and coffee machine distributor, Coffee Works Express (CWE), saw two new Wega espresso machines hit the market – the Polaris Tron and Pegaso. The machines quickly found their place in the coffee community and for the past eight years, have maintained their reputation as quality models that have evolved with the daily needs of baristas.
The Polaris Tron replaced the previous Polaris model, which CWE’s Fabio Cordovado says was extremely popular in its own right, but was taken to another level with advancements to improve operation workflow.
“It was an easy transition, in part because the extra features that Polaris Tron had made it advantageous to a lot of operators,” says Fabio.
To the benefit of café operators, the raised group head is deliberately manufactured to allow eight- and 12-ounce takeaway coffee cups to sit underneath the spouts, eliminating the need to transfer shots into a larger cup and therefore ruining the crema.
Barista lights on the machine allow operators to monitor the espresso shot as it pours and shot timers provide at-a-glance information about the speed at which the espresso is pouring. Baristas can use this information to identify whether the coffee needs to be ground finer, or coarse, and make minor adjustments to how hard they tamp without pausing mid-service to time their shots.
On the Polaris Tron, steam levers replace the older machine’s tap system, which required turning of a tap and subsequent repetitive wrist movements to activate the steam wand.
“The steam lever makes it a lot easier on the hands, it’s ergonomical,” says CWE National Sales Manager Vince Zappia. “It’s just a matter of flicking the steam on, and flicking it off when you’re done, ceasing texturing immediately.”
The Wega Pegaso is designed as an entry- level unit, suitable for those just starting out in their coffee making journey, as well as fully qualified and experienced baristas.
Once the machine is installed, and the pressure and volumetrics are programmed, it stays consistent throughout the day, but can be easily adjusted. Any programming made to the master group will automatically transfer to the others.
“It’s a simplified, user-friendly machine,” Fabio says. “Once the grind is set and the levels are set on the machine, all you have to do is load the handle, lock it in, press the button, and the machine will do the rest.”
Mirroring the high group head design of the Polaris Tron, the Pegaso boasts four programmable dose buttons per group, as well as a hot water dispense for teas and infusion drinks.
With a classic machine design, the Pegaso traditionally sported a matte black body and stainless-steel back, but recently became available in matte white to keep up with the changing aesthetic in modern cafés.
CWE’s Natalie Kollar says the Wega Pegaso is perfectly situated to help meet customer needs as the market shifts and operation costs begin to increase.
“We understand that customers can’t always spend $10,000 plus on a machine,” she says. “It’s important to us to be able to offer such a diverse range in terms of pricing. We are really happy to be able to offer the Pegaso – a high-value machine at a lower cost, that looks great.”
According to Vince, one of the keys to the success of the classic Wega machine is that it is so hard-wearing, and able to stand up to the intensities of peak-hour service without faltering.
“What we keep hearing from baristas is that these machines are workhorses – they never miss a beat,” he says. “They can rely on these machines to do the volume they need to get through the morning rush – whether they’re doing 15 kilos or 30 kilos – and they can depend on the Wega’s to keep up with the pace they need to get their service out quickly.”
The Pegaso and the Polaris Tron are seen in cafés across the country, evidence that supports their reputation as durable, reliable machines.
“We’ve got machines out in the field, making coffees, that are easily more than 10 years old, they are built to last, when cared for,” says Fabio.
He recommends that, as with any machine on the market, a regular preventative maintenance service is scheduled every 90 days, depending on the average volume of a café, to ensure a long working life.
Critically, the sheer number of Wega machines in cafés and restaurants means that the spare parts for them are equally accessible, thanks to CWE’s regular supply.
“Ninety-nine times out of 100 we have the part in our warehouse. But on the rare occasion that we don’t have it, we can ship it in without any trouble,” says Vince.
CWE also caters for element upgrades for both the Polaris Tron and the Pegaso so that the machines can meet demand without needing to be replaced.
“If a site is extremely busy, provided they have the right supply, they can opt to have a larger element installed,” says Fabio.
“Upgrading to a larger element helps the machine recover pressure faster.”
He adds that the Wega range from Italy is broad enough to cater the diverse needs of CWE’s customers.
“There are single- and double-group machines with smaller boilers for home or office spaces,” says Fabio. “Or you can get various larger models with a heat exchange unit – where the heat from the boiler is used to heat the water for brewing – all the way up to multi-boiler units for high-volume environments.”
Natalie says that the Polaris Tron and the Pegaso will always be a part of CWE’s line- up as a staple of the Wega brand.
“The Polaris, especially, has been around for a long time,” she says. “When it comes down to it, these machines really set the benchmark in the market. We know that they work well, and we know that people want have confidence in them, so we’re really proud to be able to continue offering them to our customers for the long term.
“There will also be new machines coming out next year. Customers can trust the new Wega machines have the same robustness and longevity as the Polaris Tron and Pegaso. We’re really looking forward to introducing those new machines to the market, and to our customers, in 2023.”
For more information, visit www.cwe.com.au/wega
This article appears in the February 2023 edition of BeanScene. Subscribe HERE.