The Atlantic continues their recent spate of coffee coverage with a random nostalgia piece today on Italian espresso from food writer and Joy of Coffee author, Corby Kummer: Coffee Glamour: Italians Do It Better – The Atlantic Food Channel. Among other things, the article mentions the infamous Sant’Eustachio il caffè and how they, too, are now sourcing directly from coffee farmers.

Of course, we love the Italian espresso thing too. But we also have to laugh because there are few countries that can survive pulling off something perhaps uniquely Italian in the espresso machine supply chain. In 2007 we ordered replacement seals and gaskets for our home machine from Gaggia. Being a regular habit of our machine maintenance, and knowing the likelihood of back-orders, we order the parts well in advance. Sure enough, this week our parts order from 2007 finally arrived from Gaggia — 21 months later.

Fortunately we still had spares before we needed these parts. But who would expect that ordering espresso machine parts from Italy could be like being on a waiting list for a kidney transplant?