The Flair espresso machines are among the most popular options for those who want to brew at home. We recently got our eyes on the Flair NEO, their most affordable model. A piece of lever equipment like NEO is worth considering if you’re new to preparing espresso and don’t mind a little manual labor.
The short brew head and pressured portafilter will jeopardize your capacity to pull the best espresso shots. However, since you won’t have to adjust your coffee, you’ll waste fewer coffee beans. The Flair NEO is perfect if you don’t have a grinder and only occasionally make espresso.
This article will evaluate the features that set a Flair espresso maker apart from the competition. We’ll distinguish the NEO from the more costly Flair PRO as well. You’ll be better set to decide which model best meets your needs once we’ve explained how the two differ.
What Is The Flair Espresso Maker?
Flair strives to offer a one-stop solution for creating the ideal espresso. It also emphasizes that complication is not necessary for correctly drawing a decent espresso shot with its attractive, straightforward appearance.
At first glance, you will undoubtedly be surprised by how basic it appears, it is simply an espresso maker with a holder and a small brew panel for your cup.
|Dimensions||14 × 10 × 4|
|Brewing Head||Standard Brew Head|
Models Of Flair Manual Espresso Makers
The accompanying espresso makers are presently available from Flair, which has since introduced a variety of models:
In 2016, the first Flair model was introduced. The Classic has a straightforward design and an average brew head for 12 to 18 grams of coffee.
Flair PRO 2
The PRO, the crown gem of Flair’s line, debuted in 2018 and has a larger brew than Flair’s earlier models, holding 16 to 24 grams of coffee.
This variant, which came after the Classic, has a different temperature and pressure gauge. Although the appearance is even more fashionable, the brew tip is the same as the Classics.
The newest item in the lineup, the Flair 58, was introduced in 2021. It is larger and has a distinct design than the other variants. The most significant change has to do with the workflow. The Flair 58 has an electronically heated group head and a 58mm portafilter that can be kept in. It increases the effectiveness of manual espresso brewing but is substantially more expensive.
This device has a redesigned pressured brew tip and a straightforward design. It’s the minor expensive item Flair offers.
- This machine is cheap. 120 for an espresso press is an inexpensive entry into the espresso world. There are other more affordable options. They’re variable and inconsistent. The Flair Neo has the potential to make a great shot, given that you’re willing to keep testing.
- The Neo comes with a pressurized portafilter, unlike a bottomless one on expensive espresso machines. The plus of this is that the pressurized portafilter is very forgiving.
- The Neo is upgradeable! it is possible to upgrade the pressurized to a bottomless portafilter for 24 more buckaroos, and have a setup similar to Flair classic. Fifty-six more buckaroos get you a pressure gauge to dial in your shots.
What is included with flair NEO?
- Drip tray
- The funnel
- Dosing cup
- Polyacetal flask
- Cylinder for brewing
- Portafilter with flow control
- Gray or white post, base, and handle
- Stainless steel screen for spreading
- Screw for the permanent attachment of the post to the base
Flair NEO Review
A manual lever espresso maker with a low price tag, the Flair NEO is made with ease of use in mind. In other words, it’s a budget-friendly access espresso maker that can thoroughly expose the nuances of espresso-making without requiring a significant upfront investment.
White and grey are the two color choices for the Flair NEO. The machine’s construction and design are comparable to Flair’s earlier products. The Flair NEO’s elegant manual lever curves downward from the top of its robust aluminum body, which has an oval-shaped base.
The striking red portafilter supports a stainless steel cylinder in the center. This device has a reassuringly strong aesthetic and feels and is discrete, small, and attractive.
Ease Of Use
Pulling a shot involves multiple steps, as with each Flair manual espresso maker:
- Preheating the portafilter
- Weighing and grinding the coffee beans
- Assembling the brew head
- Adding the water
- Pressing the lever
The Flair NEO’s convenience in not requiring electricity is one of its best features. Its reasonable cost is another benefit. The drawback is that pulling an espresso shot takes longer. You must completely disassemble the appliance and reassemble it each time you wish to brew espresso. Additionally, you’ll need to reheat everything and make sure everything is thoroughly cleaned after you’re done.
What Distinguishes The NEO From The other Flair Manual Espresso Makers?
The NEO is significantly different from other Flair products. The NEO is a fantastic choice for inexperienced espresso brewers because the pressurized portafilter is much more accommodating to various grinding sizes than an unpressurized one.
The water will pass through the coffee and into the cup in a typical portafilter. However, with pressurized baskets, the water passes through the coffee until being stopped at a small exit hole, which slows down its escape rate. The coffee gets caught there as you press, slowly evaporating out of that exit hole.
As a result, the espresso aerates to produce a synthetic crema.
A flow-control portafilter like the NEO enables beginners to make superb espresso with beautiful crema without using an expensive espresso grinder. Therefore, pressurized portafilters typically permit coarser grinds and more room for error.
Many of the capabilities of more expensive manual espresso machines are also available in the Flair NEO. However, some add-ons might also help you improve.
The portafilter is one illustration. Another choice is to purchase a bottomless, non-pressurized one. Before doing this, remember that you’ll need a good grinder.
A variety of different add-ons are also available. As a result, you won’t need to buy a new, more pricey espresso maker; instead, you may start with the NEO and update it as you get more experience. However, the PRO includes all those goodies if you require a new machine.
Here’s a review video for Espresso Maker PRO vs NEO:
Flair espresso machines’ Drawbacks
The Flair NEO, Classic, PRO, and Signature all share several characteristics. They all do, however, have drawbacks as well. Here are some details:
When preparing for more than one person, only Flairs are bad. Regular portafilters with espresso machines let you remove the puck, clean the basket, dosage, and prepare coffee. On the other hand, the Flair requires manual operation, necessitating preheating, disassembling, and reassembling each shot. Making more than one espresso at once is impossible, even with the PRO’s larger-capacity basket.
At the click of a button, typical espresso makers can function. However, pulling the lever down on manual espresso machines like the Flair takes some force.
A Grinder Is Required
A grinder is necessary for making espresso, which is accurate to manual grinders like those in the Flair line. The pressurized portafilter on the NEO does enable a coarser grind, but non-pressurized filters still produce the best results because you can adjust the grind size.
No coffee with milk
There is no other option to make milk-based coffees because the Flairs lack steam wands. Let’s say you typically like beverages like cappuccino or latte. In such an instance, a leading semi-automatic espresso maker with an integrated grinder could be preferable to a Flair maker, a separate grinder, and a milk steamer for a comparable price.
- Hopefully, we could make it obvious what Flair espresso machines are capable of. Additionally, we have discussed the least-priced model in the Flair line, which contrasts with the PRO, the priciest model.
- You should be able to decide which to purchase or whether a manual espresso maker would be even for you now that you are armed with this knowledge.
- If you have extra money, the Flair PRO is worth consideration because it will provide you with the higher build quality and espresso that tastes more professional. To do it, you’ll need to require calling experience and a top-notch grinder.
- In general, the Flair NEO is a great option to take into account if your top priority is creating quality espresso at home, but you lack the funds required for more costly espresso machines.