The improvements are quite a few, including the four selectable strength options that helps determine the dosage of the shots you want to brew between five and sixteen grams of coffee. If you want, you can easily tailor your experience with programmable pre-brewing, brew temperature and water volume. You can make the adjustments by using the rotary switch and the good news is that the machine will remember your preferences so you can brew the same delicious cup of coffee next time.
Any coffee-based beverage is only going to be as enjoyable as the beans that are used to make it. If you don’t already, you will need to source high-quality, whole coffee beans and drink enough coffee to make sure that those beans aren’t going stale. You can use any beans that you like, but small batch and single-origin coffee beans are going to make a world of difference over bulk and mass-produced coffee beans.
With the Impressa C9, you get programmed beverage buttons for espresso, cappuccino, coffee, hot water or milk. A 14oz. milk container is included and a burr grinder is built-into the machine. The 64-ounce removable water tank is easy to clean, and the ThermoBlock heating system keeps water at the optimal temperature. With an 18-bar power pump, this machine brews fantastic espresso.
I had avoided automatics for a while simply because pulling a shot seemed like such a romantic notion. Hah! Switching to a schedule that kicks off at 5:45 AM makes anything 'automatic' look a whole lot sexier. I am setting aside $$$ so that when this one finally fails (and that should be a while - this machine demonstrates superior engineering), I can dart right to the store and buy another.
The ESAM3500.N features programmable menu settings, meaning that you can easily adjust the coffee temperature, water hardness, the 1h to 3h automatic shutoff, start time and clock. Regardless of how picky you may be when it comes to coffee, you’ll definitely get to prepare a delicious cup of your favorite blended thanks to the 5 settings for coffee strength, including extra strong, strong, regular, mild and extra mild. On top of that, there are 3 buttons which make it easy to choosing the cup size (large, espresso and ristretto).
The Jura XS90 features easy-to-use controls for setting temperature, volume, and strength of the coffee or espresso dispensed. There’s a large bean hopper with an integrated bean sensor that will remind users to refill the bean container. There’s also a water level sensor that makes sure there’s water in the removable water tank. Priced at around $2,000, this unit is probably the cheapest Jura with a one-touch capability.
Edit - 01/15/2015: Eight and a half years later, this gem is still cranking out great coffee. I had it serviced by the wonderful folks at CoffeeBoss in Cornelius, NC last year, and it's still going strong with a cup count of 9,922. The brew group is not user serviceable, so occasional maintenance should be expected. I use distilled water (at the cost of flavor, I know) now that I'm back in the city on municipal water, so I don't need or use the Clearyl filter (I recommend it for tap/well water, though), and I do use a cleaning tablet within 5-10 cups of when it starts asking for it on the LED display.
Yeah! It has them but what doesn’t? The main complaint on the reviews is the small water and bean container. It only holds 37 ounces of water compared to others that hold 60 ounces. Another one is the max cup size, giving you only 5 inches to work with. Travel coffee cups won’t fit under the spout. The last complaint is the lack of a cup warmer probably because there was no room with this slim design.
The first thing you’ll probably notice when making your coffee is just how quiet the Giga 5 is. This is thanks to the two ceramic disk grinders that occupy each side of the unit and operate just above a whisper. These discs will probably never wear our and the grind on them is extremely precise and always consistent. It offers 18 completely customizable specialty drinks through the intuitive and easy to navigate display which provide enough variety to satisfy everyone’s tastes.
Of course, this is not all and you get a wide range of other impressive functions, such as ceramic valve technology, pre-ground option for decaf, 1-touch cappuccino system, large bean hopper with sensor and adjustable height brew spouts. Therefore, if you’re looking for the ultimate in espresso machines, then you certainly need to consider the Jura XS90 and experience how the perfect espresso shot actually tastes like.
Jura does not make any budget-friendly machines, so you should come in expecting to make an investment. Prices range from $800 for a single cup machine, to above $5,000 for Jura’s top of the line model. You can always search for refurbished models, and Jura occasionally offers factory serviced machines that function like new, but have been returned to the company for unspecified reasons.
The Saeco PicoBaristo HD8924/47 Super-automatic espresso machine is a superior compact coffee machine from one of the world’s best-known manufacturers. It is an Amazon Choice machine, popular with purchasers and the recipient of excellent reviews. The PicoBaristo provides the widest variety of drinks of any compact super-automatic espresso machine.
The buttons of the Jura XS90 can be easily programmed for setting volume, strength and temperature of the espresso dispensed. If you take a closer look at the right side of the XS90, you’ll notice that the multi function button is perfect for programming the lattes or cappuccino, including the strength and amount of milk, but also the temperature of espresso dispensed. If you want, then you can even adjust the milk’s foaminess.
For those who tend to like their java a bit more robust and flavorful, this espresso machine offers a coffee and steam wand that you can use to adjust the potency of your coffee. If you prefer a bit less vigor to your morning espresso, simply move the wand to the steam side to add a bit more water. This will allow you to share your espresso maker with those around you who prefer a stronger or milder taste you do and still keep everyone happy.