Coffee Works Express (CWE) hosted the first official world launch of the Slayer Steam on 1 December.
Unveiled at Studio Neon in Sydney, CWE customers and Slayer fans gathered at the secret location for an evening of demonstrations, networking, and fun.
“We’ve been with Slayer from the start, we’re on a journey with them, and this is their next chapter. The team have put so much work into developing the Slayer Steam. This world and Australian launch was a chance to give them the recognition they deserve – there was lots of mutual respect in the room tonight,” CWE’s Nat Kollar said.
The crowd was treated to the international presence of Slayer Founder Jason Prefontaine and Brandon King who made the journey for the Australian premiere.
“I’m so impressed with the coffee culture here in Australia and the passion an enthusiasm you have. To see this many people tonight be part of an espresso machine launch is just incredible,” Jason said. “The concept for this idea came to me about five years ago from my travels to Australia. Seeing the volume of milk-based drinks you do, we wanted to design a machine that would make milk-based beverages taste better. We realised there wasn’t a machine that cared about milk as much as it should when 80 to 90 per cent of your coffees are milk-based.”
The Slayer Steam combines advanced volumetrics with innovations in workflow, ergonomics and durability to contend as the top performer for businesses that rely on milk drinks as a major revenue stream.
The Slayer team developed the patent-pending Vaporizer system, a new technology that creates dry steam at custom temperatures to improve the sweetness and creaminess of milk.
“The Vaporizer gives us the ability to set temperature of machine the same way we can get different temperatures to extract coffee, roast coffee or even cook food. We’re the only manufacturer to do that for milk, and we questioned: ‘Why?’ It’s so surprising how much milk temperature impacts coffee flavour. We worked with milk scientists and completed two solid years of research to understand just what milk is and how it behaves. The project was much harder than ever thought possible,” Jason said.
As in any other machine, steam is produced in a boiler that is heated to approximately 120ºC. From there, it travels through the Vaporizer, which is essentially a compact super-heater. The Vaporizer boosts the steam temperature by an additional 37ºC (or more) before sending it out the wand.
When the vapour cools, steam condenses into liquid water and dilutes the milk in the pitcher. This occurs in most systems, but the Slayer Steam reduces dilution by starting with a hotter, drier steam. This alone improves the taste of milk.
“If I extract at 92°C or 94°C, coffee will taste different each time based on the different temperature. It’s the same for milk. Steaming at different temperatures changes the molecular milk structure and overall flavour of coffee,” Brandon said.
Brandon said there’s no “perfect” milk temperature for coffee, rather, it’s about testing and tasting to see what tastes best.
“Milk will always change based on seasonality, so its temperature will always have to change to suit different coffee profiles. Essentially, baristas have to dial in milk,” he said. “I’ve even become a professional milk cupper. Rather than demonstrate espresso at trade shows I’ve been steaming milk at two different temperatures and asking people to try both and see the difference.”
Steam is throttled with Accu-Flow technology, which also plays a huge part in the ability to tune the flow rate of steam and achieve the perfect texture without wasting unnecessary amounts of milk. These settings also allow fine-tuning of dairy substitutes.
“Slayer focuses on three things really well; the quality of build, the quality of espresso, and the quality of aesthetic design. For this reason we’ve seen people’s mouth’s water of this machine tonight – they’re impressed by everything; the adjustable drip try; variety of milks this machine can tailor to; and the change of milk temperature,” Jason said.
“Someone drove five hours to be here tonight and told me his business when up 30 per cent because they use this machine. That level of commitment to be here to night is inspiring and humbling.”
Brandon and Jason will continue their launch of the Slayer Steam in Melbourne next week.
“Back in time Seattle used to influence the global market and now Australia and Melbourne in particular is influencing the world,” Brandon said. “Australia will have a big head start on the world when it comes to the Slayer Steam. There’s a passion for our brand here that’s second to none, and we’re extremely grateful.”
For more information visit Australian distributor Coffee Works Express at www.cwe.com.au.