Those passionate about their coffee will almost certainly have encountered the Bialetti brand. The company’s history goes back to 1919 when the first workshop was opened in Crusinallo to make aluminium products. Its first stove-top espresso maker, the Moka Express, appeared in 1933 and revolutionised home coffee making. The ‘Little man with a moustache’ trademark was created in the 1950s by Paul Campani and features on the company’s products to this day.
Whilst the stove-top versions remain as popular as ever today, the introduction of the Moka Easy electric in 3-cup and 6-cup models added convenience. Note that cup size used by Bialetti refers to Italian demi-tasse espresso size (personally I go for a 3-cup shot – OK, so I get a little jittery with the caffeine rush!)
Now, in 2008, Bialetti have released the Moka Elettrika – a travel version that can operate with 110V to 230V. All you need, wherever you are, is a power outlet, some water and of course some quality coffee. The Elettrika doesn’t appear to be available in the UK yet, but since it’s a travel coffee maker it can’t be too long before it turns up!