Chris Prefontaine

Slayer Espresso was designed by us and our team at Fratello Coffee, true coffee professionals for coffee professionals. We wanted to “Make Coffee Better”….to taste better, with better equipment. Since 1991, the Prefontaine family was in the espresso machine importing business, focusing at that time with Nuova Simonelli. Over the years, we had decades of combined experience: Coffee roasting/sourcing, importing & servicing specialized restaurant equipment as well as real world café experience. Often, we would experience incredible coffees on the cupping table which simply would not express themselves them same way when brewed on the coffee bar. In the early 2000’s the Third Wave coffee movement was newly introduced to the industry which brought forward different ideas about specialty coffee could/should be. One of these ideas of this movement was introducing bright new lighter roast profiles utilized for espresso. We found that the espresso machine industry wasn’t as quick to grow with these new trends, and thus, didn’t have the controls in place to adequately allow the barista and roaster to present the flavor profiles they were hoping to. The vast majority of all espresso machines were being assembled utilizing the same parts and ideas around espresso extraction. In 2005, we had realized the espresso machine manufacturers seemed unwilling to innovate and were resistant to change. We felt that it was up to us, to show the industry what we had in our minds for innovation. We felt that if we were looking for better tools, that the rest of the specialty coffee industry, was likely looking for something new as well. In 2007 Slayer Espresso was birthed and now operating out of Seattle Washington, the heart of the specialty coffee community. We wanted to have access to some of the world’s best cafes/roasters and have direct contact with some of the most influential people in the industry.

Slayer coffee

In 2009, Slayer Espresso was introduced to the world when we exhibited at the SCA Conference in Atlanta, which was also hosting the World’s Barista Championship. It was our chance to now show the top barista’s on the planet what we have been up to. To say that we were the busiest booth in the exhibit is an understatement. You could not walk past our booth due to the line ups of 20-40 people from open to close. Roasters, all brining in their own coffee to taste what their espresso’s tasted like at different temperatures, utilizing unique pressure profiling techniques which were foreign ideas to them until this time. We made coffee better. We improved the functionality, and flavors which people within our industry struggled to produce on traditional equipment. Jason Prefontaine eventually took full control of ownership and operations of Slayer Espresso in Seattle, as Chris and Russ Prefontaine began to create Analog Coffee in Calgary. Slayer has continued to grow its presence around the globe working with many of the top coffee brands within each country. Today, Slayer Espresso is majority controlled and manufactured by La Cimballi, the oldest Italian espresso machine company around. We will proudly watch how they continue to expand the Slayer brand, and hopefully continue to innovate giving coffee professionals continued access to better tools, to make coffee better.

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