The personal coffee machine
The inspiration for the aesthetically arresting Aroma Espresso Maker came from the sensual aspects of coffee itself. Coffee is a rich aromatic liquid, with similar qualities to a cologne, hence the design aimed to capture the essence of those qualities by being reminiscent of a cologne bottle and we can vouch that it has achived its goals – the Aroma is one of those objects you see that makes you scream “I want one of those.” Apart from being beautiful and highly desirable, the Aroma Espresso Maker is a personal, compact and portable 60 ml espresso maker designed to be carried for convenient usage anytime. With discretionary time becoming scarce in an increasingly busy world, the Aroma Espresso Maker can easily be carried to work in your bag, and simply plugged in and turned on at your desk. Its transparent casing allows the user to witness coffee being brewed enhancing the sensual experience and to finish it all off, there’s also a cylindrical leather carry bag with a zipper top to protect the coffee machine while traveling.
“From an aesthetic point of view it plays with your desires”, said designer David Mansueto. “It’s not just a coffee maker. There’s something very personal about it that makes you want to show it to someone and say “look what I’ve got. It’s MY coffee machine.”
Mansueto’s Aroma Espresso Maker was his final year design project at the University of Technology in Sydney, and became one of the finalists in the recent Australian Design Awards.
The design project was the result of an extensive dissertation report on the ‘Consumption of Hot Beverages’. A survey found that the extension of work hours and increased deadlines made people less inclined to take a break and more often consume coffee at their desk. This sparked the need to design a coffee machine which makes espresso style coffee that was quick and easy to use, and was portable enough to take to work and brew coffee on the desk.
“There was also a noticeable trend in the style of coffee machines being designed and produced on the market towards blandness,” said Mansueto. “There are starting to look very similar and have no ‘poetic’ gesture toward what they produce. “
Functionally, the coffee machines is an innovative adaptation of the traditional Moka/Espresso pots commonly used by Italians as the preferred way to make espresso style coffee at home. Traditionally, once placed on a stovetop, the water in a bottom pressure vessel would boil causing steam pressure to force hot water through a coffee basket. This brews the coffee which pours out a top spout and into a top chamber. The AROMA Espresso Maker uses the same principles but has cleverly re-arranged the pressure and coffee chambers to make the design compact and allow the user to witness the brewing process.
The stainless steel inner cylinder ensures a strong and corrosive resistant construction. The polycarbonate outer cylinder (made from Xylex – GE plastics) is a PC/polyester resin that has excellent clarity as well as excellent heat and chemical resistance. This material is essential since the outer cylinder essentially becomes the handle and therefore must not be hot to touch. Also, since it will contain hot coffee, the material must be chemical resistant so it will not stain.
The coffee machine is also equipped with a thermal fuse as well as a pressure valve to prevent over heating and pressure blockages that can cause the pressure vessel to exploded if not fitted with one.
In terms of aesthetics the AROMA espresso maker has been designed around the theme of scent, hence the name AROMA. Coffee is all about the AROMA of the brewed coffee, without this coffee is just a black liquid with a slight bitter taste with hints of sweetness. Hence coffee is not too dissimilar to a cologne or perfume fragrance in the sense that it is a very concentrated, full-bodied, precious liquid that is aromatic. As a result the AROMA espresso maker resembles qualities of a cologne or perfume bottle. The clear outer cylinder enables you to see the coffee like most fragrance bottles, and the thick wall section gives the impression that the inner contents is precious and the aroma and flavor are well contained.
Some considerations for additional accessories would be an additional in-line switch so that the user can have a switch base at home and at work. Also a leather cylindrical carry bag with a zipper top might also be a nice accessory to protect the coffee machine while traveling.
Unfortunately, it can’t be run off a USB port. “There’s not quite enough juice to run it off a USB port,” said designer David Mansueto. There are quite a few USB mug warmers out there but to brew coffee correctly I couldn’t get the amount of power I needed.”
David has just completed his final year of design studies and is now seeking to take his exquisite Aroma to market. Interested parties can contact David here.