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Old 02-08-2009, 10:56 PM   #1
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Default Francis Francis (did I stutter?)

So, my local paper has a full-page ad in the Sunday magazine from illy: "Enjoy cafe-quality espresso for less than $1 a cup" and the offer is for a Francis Francis X5 machine and 4 cappuccino cups ($678 value) for $150, when you agree to purchase 4 cans a month of coffee in the next year.

So, this question coming from a guy currently using a moka pot, is this a worthwhile machine, or is the no free lunch axiom in play here?

Here's the illy site: http://www.illyusa.com/webapp/wcs/st...anding_0=PLAF9
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Old 02-08-2009, 11:16 PM   #2
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Old 02-09-2009, 05:45 AM   #3
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Default Re: Francis Francis (did I stutter?)

Not bad offer. Illy is not cheap, but it's pretty good canned coffee. The pods can taste pretty good too. The pods are the way to go in an office setting. If you don't mind paying too much for coffee for the next year, it's not a bad offer.

I can find Illy on online for around $10.00...
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Old 02-09-2009, 07:28 AM   #4
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Default Re: Francis Francis (did I stutter?)

If you are looking to save money, I would not do it. I am not into contracts for minimum buying like this offer. If you are already buying that much Illy, then that's something else...
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Old 02-09-2009, 10:31 AM   #5
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Default Re: Francis Francis (did I stutter?)

As a general rule:

a) espresso machines that look like they're from outer space are not worth a puck;

b) if you really like coffee and then buy a machine that is only destined for pods you will end up being sorely disappointed;

c) Francis-Francis offers some very cool espresso cup-and-saucer sets;

d) there is no espresso machine worth a puck if you DO NOT ALREADY HAVE A FIRST CLASS COFFEE GRINDER (THIS IS AN ABSOLUTE IN MYOPINION). Yes... I know some very respectable folks are happy with Illy from the can but, personally, I never "got" it after getting accustomed to freshroast, freshground;

e) if you already have a killer grinder, don't waste your money on a Francis-Francis machine - they're all sizzle and no steak. (My apologies to anyone here who is already in love with a Francis-Francis machine. Let us know if you have one and why you think it is the bees knees. I tried one for a few days. It was flimsy, had terrible thermostat control and made 3rd rate espresso on its' best day. BUT! It looked very cool on the counter. Cool. Just like the brew water it pumped.) You'll be happier with freshroast, well ground, and a $20 moka pot or a $25 AeroPress. Well, maybe not happier, but you will make better coffee.

f) Eye candy has some value but the worst reviews* at coffeegeek.com on the X-5 sum up my feelings on the hardware. It's a cute toy for someone who doesn't know a good shot from a bad one. Selling a $500 for 50% off tells -

1. what the machine is really worth; and
2. they make their money on the pods, which suck especially from a machine that can't keep steady brew water temp.

g) Getting ANY pricey machine (like the F-FX5 less the pod subscription) without a three-way solenoid is very bad mojo unless you only use the pods. If, on the other hand, you use ground coffee in the X5 then you end up with a sloppy-hot coffee-soup-grit "puck" (ha!) that you have to spoon, or splash, out after every shot. Plus, it still sucks from this underperforming machine. Maybe you'll expect this from a $199 brewer but not from a $500 one.

h) but all this is only my opinion and I am mostly guessing-guessing on the Francis-Francis piece of crap-crap.

I love their cups.

*I tried three of these through Illy offer.

I was sorely disappointed. Despite using both Illy preground and whole beans as well as my own home roast, I could never get this machine to make a halfways decent espresso: the cream was thin and watery.

I tried everything to no avail. I tried different roasts, grinds, and tamping. I tried the pods, bith the new and old versions: nothing worked. I have heard others say they had better luck. Not me

I have to say the local Illy rep. was fantastic and stuck with me , and they did refund my money sans shipping. But if you want a real machine, go elsewhere.
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Old 02-09-2009, 12:16 PM   #6
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Default Re: Francis Francis (did I stutter?)

For sure, the Francis Francis is more for looks, but to some- that is more important than the product it makes.
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Old 02-09-2009, 04:04 PM   #7
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Default Re: Francis Francis (did I stutter?)

(The hopelessly opinioned loudmouthed self-styled coffee azzozole sez) The FF X-5 is a piece of counter decoration for metropolitan upscale coffee-posers.


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Old 02-09-2009, 05:05 PM   #8
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Default Re: Francis Francis (did I stutter?)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mister Moo View Post
(The hopelessly opinioned loudmouthed self-styled coffee azzozole sez) The FF X-5 is a piece of counter decoration for metropolitan upscale coffee-posers.



What do yens really think???

Quote:
Originally Posted by jrw View Post
So, my local paper has a full-page ad in the Sunday magazine from illy: "Enjoy cafe-quality espresso for less than $1 a cup" and the offer is for a Francis Francis X5 machine and 4 cappuccino cups ($678 value) for $150, when you agree to purchase 4 cans a month of coffee in the next year.

So, this question coming from a guy currently using a moka pot, is this a worthwhile machine, or is the no free lunch axiom in play here?

Here's the illy site: http://www.illyusa.com/webapp/wcs/st...anding_0=PLAF9
Just goes to show you, ya beat the bushes with a coffee question around here and you scare up a covey of Lizard Lickers. Haven't seen Dan-O multiple post like this in awhile -- must be he is opining strongly on this one. I'd take the advice to the bank......
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Old 02-09-2009, 08:39 PM   #9
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Default Re: Francis Francis (did I stutter?)

OK boys, I get it, I get it! I'll truck on down the road and look for something else.

But I'm still not real clear: Should I order the cups?
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Old 08-03-2016, 01:32 AM   #10
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Default Re: Francis Francis (did I stutter?)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mister Moo View Post
As a general rule:

a) espresso machines that look like they're from outer space are not worth a puck;

b) if you really like coffee and then buy a machine that is only destined for pods you will end up being sorely disappointed;

c) Francis-Francis offers some very cool espresso cup-and-saucer sets;

d) there is no espresso machine worth a puck if you DO NOT ALREADY HAVE A FIRST CLASS COFFEE GRINDER (THIS IS AN ABSOLUTE IN MYOPINION). Yes... I know some very respectable folks are happy with Illy from the can but, personally, I never "got" it after getting accustomed to freshroast, freshground;

e) if you already have a killer grinder, don't waste your money on a Francis-Francis machine - they're all sizzle and no steak. (My apologies to anyone here who is already in love with a Francis-Francis machine. Let us know if you have one and why you think it is the bees knees. I tried one for a few days. It was flimsy, had terrible thermostat control and made 3rd rate espresso on its' best day. BUT! It looked very cool on the counter. Cool. Just like the brew water it pumped.) You'll be happier with freshroast, well ground, and a $20 moka pot or a $25 AeroPress. Well, maybe not happier, but you will make better coffee.

f) Eye candy has some value but the worst reviews* at coffeegeek.com on the X-5 sum up my feelings on the hardware. It's a cute toy for someone who doesn't know a good shot from a bad one. Selling a $500 for 50% off tells -

1. what the machine is really worth; and
2. they make their money on the pods, which suck especially from a machine that can't keep steady brew water temp.

g) Getting ANY pricey machine (like the F-FX5 less the pod subscription) without a three-way solenoid is very bad mojo unless you only use the pods. If, on the other hand, you use ground coffee in the X5 then you end up with a sloppy-hot coffee-soup-grit "puck" (ha!) that you have to spoon, or splash, out after every shot. Plus, it still sucks from this underperforming machine. Maybe you'll expect this from a $199 brewer but not from a $500 one.

h) but all this is only my opinion and I am mostly guessing-guessing on the Francis-Francis piece of crap-crap.

I love their cups.

*I tried three of these through Illy offer.

I was sorely disappointed. Despite using both Illy preground and whole beans as well as my own home roast, I could never get this machine to make a halfways decent espresso: the cream was thin and watery.

I tried everything to no avail. I tried different roasts, grinds, and tamping. I tried the pods, bith the new and old versions: nothing worked. I have heard others say they had better luck. Not me

I have to say the local Illy rep. was fantastic and stuck with me , and they did refund my money sans shipping. But if you want a real machine, go elsewhere.
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Old 08-03-2016, 12:38 PM   #11
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Default Re: Francis Francis (did I stutter?)

Luckily I have two Peet's Coffees here in Long Beach so I can have a decent espresso between shots from my Kali - Good info - What machine do recommend for someone that wants to have an espresso but not spend the prep time? My Kali (Coffee Bean) pods are ok and better than nothing but just not 1st rate.
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Old 08-03-2016, 01:47 PM   #12
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Default Re: Francis Francis (did I stutter?)

Wow, this thread came back from the dead!

And HabanosBob, I'm a regular at the Peet's in Seal Beach, we're almost neighbors.
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Old 08-03-2016, 06:21 PM   #13
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Default Re: Francis Francis (did I stutter?)

Well jrw I get to Peet's in Seal Beach too! I'm smack in the middle of Seal Beach and Belmont Shore Peet's - PM me and maybe we can get together for a cigar - Used to smoke at Seal Beach Peet's around their tide pool fountain - that still happening or have they taken that venue away from us too?
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Old 08-04-2016, 12:20 AM   #14
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Default Re: Francis Francis (did I stutter?)

I have an old X5 that I inherited a while back. I'll certify what's been said about the quality of espresso it makes. Looks cool, makes a hassle-free push-button cup if guests are over that don't know any better. And the cup is perfectly drinkable and enjoyable. But it's not good espresso, not by a longshot.
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Old 08-04-2016, 06:42 AM   #15
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Default Re: Francis Francis (did I stutter?)

A good espresso is not a cheap endeavor; that's just the facts... Espresso machines are just as expensive in Europe as they are here.
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