Do you need a two-lever coffee machine or can you get by with a single-lever?

You're choosing a lever coffee machine for a café. How many levers should it have?

The size of your coffee machine, and therefore the number of levers, depends on how many coffees you want to make in a day. The more levers you have on your coffee machine, or heads or brewing groups , the morecoffees you can brew inless time. Which is very useful in busier operations.

Think not only about the average daily traffic in a coffee shop, but also about the busiest hours of the day. Evenat peak times, however short, you want to serve great performance. That is,perfectly brewed coffee in a relatively short time.

Rather, having a two-lever coffee machine, i.e. one with two brew groups - the heads - may seem preferable. Typical saying, "have a second lever just in case". However,these advantages can also mean a few extrahassles with the coffee machine.

Coffee machine heads, levers and portafilters

Let's get the terminology straight first. Typically, the name lever coffee maker then leads to a distinction of its type or size based on the number of levers. Thus, a single-lever coffee machine or a two-lever coffee machine, etc.However,the levers themselves, or in other words portafilters, can be purchased in varying quantities for your coffee maker.

The place where the lever sits in the coffee maker is called the head of thecoffee maker, the group head (brew group) or "group head". And so the number of these heads is what defines a coffee maker's ability to hold a given number of portafilters - levers.

What is a coffee machine head

Thecoffee maker houses the pump, the boiler and many other necessary components. But the magic of coffee extraction happens in the head of the coffee maker. That is,the portafilter housed in it. In case you are deciding on the performance of the coffee maker, how many coffees it will be able to make at once, you are therefore thinking about the number of heads of the coffee maker.

From an operational point of view, of the components that make up the head of the coffee maker, you should know primarily theshower and the seals. The shower, that strainer in the head of the coffee maker from which the water flows to the coffee in the portafilter. The gasket is then found around the shower. You shouldn't forget about these two parts of the coffee maker during regular maintenance.

A single-lever coffee machine is a coffee machine with one head - the group of the brewing unit into which the lever, i.e. the portafilter, is inserted.

Will you need a two-lever coffee machine?

For starters , theaverage number of coffees per daycan help you decide . This will give you an idea of how many levers will be more suitable for you. To give you an idea, calculate as follows: up to 50 coffees per day = single-lever machine, up to 100 coffees per day = two-lever machine. If you plan to have more than 100 coffees per day then you can also use a three or more lever machine.

In addition to this expected daily number of coffees, think about the times of day when your café will be busiest. At peak times, when your coffee shop will be absolutely packed and you'll still be making coffee for customers who have stopped in for a latte to go in a cup.

During the day, when customers are coming in continuously, maybe a single-serve coffee machine will do the trick. In a busy hour, a coffee maker with a second head could help you be more efficient. Havingthe ability to make coffee on both levers at the same time could mean your barista will work 30% faster than with a single-lever machine. Faster order processing means higher customer satisfaction.

Other benefits of a two-lever coffee machine

Having a larger coffee machine in your cafe means more than just extracting up to 4 espressos at a time. The size of a two-lever coffee maker increases thesurface area to heat the coffeecupscompared to a single-lever one . Even this little detail could be missed in a rush hour and cause you problems making sudden amounts of coffee.

It's not just coffee you'll be making on a lever coffee maker. Two levers mean a bigger coffee maker, and more space in the coffee maker means more room for the boiler. So with a two-lever coffee maker, you'll have a larger volume of hot water than you would from a single-lever machine.

A coffee shop usually serves not only coffee but also other hot drinks. Well, at least tea. The easiest way to make tea is to use the hot water from the coffee machine to pour it. That's why you also need a sufficiently large boiler inside the coffee machine. One that can handle both coffees and teas and all the other beverages you need hot water from the coffee machine for.

Advantages of a single-lever coffee machine

While a lot of these mentioned advantages may entice you to buy a two-pot coffee maker, don't forget to consider the disadvantages as well. Or rather, the advantages of a single lever one. First is its size. Single lever coffee makers are compact and take up less space on the bar of the coffee maker. In smaller operations, where you're counting on every inch, this feature of a single lever coffee maker can weigh heavily in your decision making.

A single lever coffee machine is also easier to operate. You only have one lever for which to adjust the espresso. And of course, at the end of the day, you only have one lever and a head to clean. So a single lever coffee machine simplifies and speeds up the morning preparation before opening and the final cleaning at the end of the day.

Coffee machine for coffee stalls at weddings and festivals

Are you planning to take your coffee machine to an event, festival or prepare coffee at a wedding catering? You'll be glad for a coffee machine that won't break your back when you're carrying it from your car to the booth and back. Lighter, easier to handle and simply "portable" coffee makers are single-lever.

Coffee machine price and running costs

Of course, there are also the finances you want (can) put into the coffee machine. A smaller single lever coffee maker costs less than a two lever one. For example, for the popular Appia Life coffee machine, the difference between asingle-lever and a two-lever variant is about 30,000 CZK. You will also save money on the actual operation of the smaller coffee machine, due tolower energy consumption.

Professional coffee machine for a small café vs. a coffee stand

All in all, you can count on a single-speed coffee machine for a coffee stand, takeaway coffee window, bakery or pastry shop with an accompanying range of quality espresso and milk coffee drinks. If your plan is to open a small café offering hot drinks and selling at least 50 coffees a day, choose between two-pot coffee machinesalready .