Fred Krinke and the Fountain Pen Shop were American originals. What a fun place to spend an afternoon. A combination of museum and factory repair shop. Fred repaired a number of my pens over the years and rummaged in the back of the shop until he found just the elusive pen part that I needed. I lived an hour, or three depending on traffic, from the shop so it was a treat for me to visit and then be able to hang out in the shop for as long as possible. The conversations that I overheard provided a nice education on all things fountain pen. Fred was particularly helpful when the store was less busy, taking the time to explain characteristics for various vintage pens, filling systems, and nib choices. I enjoyed and appreciated the entire experience.
To the point of the original post, Fred was instrumental in getting me hooked on collecting Esterbrooks. With his advice, along with encouragement from several FPNers, I ended up with a sizable assortment of Esties, all usable and in excellent condition. He often told me about his preference for the pens and my memory is that he mainly liked their dependability, ease of servicing, interchangeable nibs, and affordability. As others have mentioned, it was that the pen wrote when the nib touched paper and it wrote well. All that you can ask of a pen.
I moved from California in 2013, started full-time RVing, and sold most of my pen collection due to lack of space to store them on the road. I kept a few of the Esties and they are still my favorite writers.