That’s a pity because as auto-frothers go, it’s a very good one. The one thing we’re not so crazy about is the fact that you’ve got to run plastic tubing from your milk source (you have to provide your own, by the way – you do not get one when you purchase the machine) to the frothing arm, which makes your very expensive coffee machine look like a high school science project.
I have tried several semi-automatic espresso machines and have returned 4 before I found this one you have to spend the money. It makes great coffee but the froth just can't steam 8oz of milk for a latte and put out a quality Latte. So I purchased the Jura froth PRO Automatic Milk Frother and it makes a great Latte. Coffee is excellent and iced lattes are quick and easy to make and I have saved $$ through the years. I would purchase one again it pays for itself if you drink lattes and iced drinks at Starbucks within 3 months. I have owned this machine since Dec. 2008 and happy with the purchase.
For those really into their coffee drinks, and I mean obsessively so, a separate grinder is an absolute must. That loud noise you hear in the coffee shop every time you go in? That’s the grinder. Now, after saying that, let me tell you the grinder in the F7 is quiet and fast. So don’t worry about your kitchen ending up sounding like a coffee shop’s barista station.
Last but not least, this machine features 5 level water hardness selectors and makes it a breeze to set it to your specific water hardness. On top of that, it can also count the number of coffee cups you’ve consumed, how many times the machine was cleaned, how often the steam function was used and so on. If you want, you can keep stats on a daily basis.
I'm coming up on a year with this machine in December. It can be a little picky about the beans (not oily). But with lavazza super crema beans, it performs quite well. I very seldom get a shot that I don't like. I vary my drinks day to day, and enjoy straight espresso, cortados, lattes, and occasionally coffee. It doesn't disappoint in either of the modes. I don't like that if I program my drink (2 shot espresso) and double tap the start button, it will simply pull double the volume, and not do a full 2 cycles of the double shot. There is a noticeable difference in the quality of the shots when I do this.
Working upstairs or lying in bed? Press the button and (depending on how palatial your abode is) you’ll instantly hear beans being ground into tasty oblivion before the water is heated and poured through them. Then, when you’re ready (the hot plate gives you a 40-minute window), you can brave the trek to the kitchen and find a jug of the delicious black stuff waiting for you.
When it comes to grinding the coffee beans, the ESAM3500.N has an integrated conical burr grinder which allows you to further adjust the fineness of your selected settings. Other excellent features you’re going to love about this model include the decalcification system which alerts you when you have to clean the machine, a hot water sport for hot chocolate and tea, 2 boilers (stainless steel) for greater durability and faster recovery, but also a 60 oz water reservoir (removable) and a seven oz bean container.
I’m Geoff. I love coffee, and have tried a bunch of different coffee making techniques and gadgets over the years – everything from fancy La Marzocco’s, to industrial Bunn’s, to Aeropress, and even (gag) instant. While bean selection and the actual making of coffee tends to get a lot of attention, the grinding of the beans is often overlooked (or bypassed). Scroll back up and find the right grinder for you.
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.