From the outside, the Giga 5 looks attractive. It has a color TFT (thin film transistor) LCD screen display on the top front and center, with a stylish aluminum chassis with black plastic sides. This unit will definitely enhance the look of any kitchen. There’s a dedicated hot water spout at the front of the machine plus a couple of adjustable spouts for making coffee. Located on top of the unit you will find on/off buttons, a program button, and a rotary switch that is key to navigating the Giga’s menu.
The Gaggia Brera is a great budget super automatic espresso machine that not only has a small form factor, but it’s also very well designed and looks great on any kitchen countertop. When thinking about it, the first thing that comes to the mind of those that already use it is convenience. For example, the water tank, drop tray and the dregs drawer are all within reach and can be easily accessed from the machine for simple, swift maintenance and regular cleaning.
I only have one minor quibble with this machine; if you like cappuccino, it produces foam that is weak and deflates easily. I have troubleshot this problem from every possible angle (tried different percent milkfat, different milks(soy), different milk temps etc.) and the results were still a little disappointing. I purchased the Milk Frothing accessory designed for this unit and still could not produce the more velvety foam I was seeking. The easiest fix for this is to buy an Aerolatte: steam your milk with the F9 (the steam function works great) and then whip till your hearts content with the Aerolatte. For an extra $15 bucks spent on the Aerolatte, you'll have the perfect cup of cappuccino to rival any cafe.
The IPBAS system is a special 2 step pre infusion cycle that conditions and also moistens the ground coffee to get the best flavor extraction with excellent crema topping. Thanks to the great functionality of the F50, you can brew from 1 to 16 oz cups of coffee in 5 different strength settings. It can also grind from five to max sixteen g of coffee, ranging in strength from extra mild to extra strong.
It uses a stainless steel conical burr grinder to get your beans just right, and it has a high-pressure system to extract more flavor in less time. The foam frother is remarkable as it produces fine foam that will make your coffee look and taste so much better. You can clean the system out relatively easily, and it allows you to control the strength of your beverages. Finally, it has an energy saver mode, and it’s slimmer than other two-cup models.
Jura ENA Micro 90 One Touch Automatic Coffee Center: It might be the world’s smallest automatic machine but it offers big features. The compact machine can prepare a cappuccino and a latte macchiato at the touch of a button and, thanks to fine foam technology, the fine milk foam is always creamy and sweet. The Micro 90 also features a professional grade conical burr grinder, a powerful pump that produces 15 bars of pressure and a one-touch display.
As with all other blade grinders, transferring grinds to a machine or another container is a messy process. Its grind uniformity cannot compete with a burr mill of comparative price. While adequate for finer grinds, the Capresso 503.05 still underperforms for French press and cold brew. Furthermore, as with all other blade grinders on the market, this one suffers from a buildup of coffee dust. With a tiny bit more money, you can get a much more versatile machine like the 559 (#4 in this list) or 560 Capresso burr grinder (#2).
The Wrap-up: While someone with simple tastes may be content with a twenty dollar automatic drip coffee maker or instant powders, real coffee lovers will appreciate the finer points of the Jura-Capresso S8. Not only will this superb machine turn out brews worthy of elegant European cafes, but it does so with a surprisingly little effort from the user, thanks to its simple “one-touch” programming.
The Capresso EC-100 comes with a generous number of safety features, which you find in the best home espresso machines. These include a short electrical cord so that nothing is dangling down within reach of a youngster's eager hands, which could pose serious risks to a child. The polarized plug means your espresso maker can only be plugged in one way. Since this model is equipped with on and off indicator lights, it's easy to tell that your machine is off when you want it to be and not worry about accidents, burns or fire.
2) Overall, I have to say I absolutely LOVE this machine. Here's how I rationalized payment for such an expensive indulgence: if you figure a Starbucks costs approx. $3, and you buy one everyday (which I was), it would take 600 cups to break even. Well, with the automatic counter on my machine, I have made more than 1600 cups! This machine paid for itself in the first year..easily. ok, so now that you're past the issue of paying so much for a coffee machine, here's more...
When looking for the perfect super automatic espresso maker, it can be a bit difficult to know which model and brand to consider and that’s because there are so many of them out there, it can become confusing even for those who are not at their first espresso machine. The majority of reviews written by so called “experts” just confuse people more, while the comparison charts available online add to the uncertainty. So which of the many models available are actually required for you and your specific application?
Not only is it incredibly stylish, but the S8 grinds beans to your desired fineness, brews the perfect cup of coffee (or two perfect cups if you want), froths and steams milk to the perfect temperature and desired foaminess, and even cleans itself when set on the proper cycle. In short, this dynamo does just about everything but drink the coffee for its owner.
Featuring chrome plated accents and a stainless steel font panel, the Brera is an espresso machine that is very aesthetically pleasing. If you want, you can also get the side panels in silver or black. Functionality wise, the Brera is able to prepare a wide range of coffee types, including specialty coffee and pre-ground decaffeinated coffee thanks to its bypass doser. You can also make lattes, cappuccinos and macchiatos thanks to the machine’s Rapid Steam Technology and Panarello Wand.
As we continue on our journey of Jura Coffee Makers, the Impressa C65 is another “standard” unit. It doesn’t have all of the accouterments of higher-end models, but it still makes an incredible cup of coffee, and it offers the speed and convenience that you would expect from Jura. Overall, we would compare this model to the ENA 9 above, although this one can make two cups at once.
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.