With the look of a shrink-rayed professional espresso machine, the grinning fizzog of shaven-headed culinary chemist Heston Blumenthal on the box and a price tag that puts it out of reach of all but the most well-heeled caffeine fiend, the Barista Express (branded as Breville in the US and Sage in the UK) is clearly aimed at those seeking a major step up in their home-brewed coffee.
The very first espresso machines worked on a steam-pressure basis, and they’re still in use today. With this type of machine, steam or steam pressure is used to force water through the coffee grounds and produce espresso. Some steam-driven machines can produce a measure of foam “crema.” But they can’t generate enough pressure or provide the precise temperature control necessary to produce true espresso: They simply make a very strong cup of coffee. However, they cost considerably less than pump-driven machines. Our verdict is that if you’re a true espresso lover and seeking to make a good shot at home, we recommend you steer clear of steam-driven machines. They’ll likely disappoint you.
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.
When the milk is finally steamed on the dual element system, the machine is ready to continue making more espresso shots. Keep in mind that if you choose to get a single element machine, you’ll need to wait five minutes so that the boiler can cool off naturally and then run hot water through the steam wand for ten seconds in order to purge the boiler of steam.
The Delightful: The Z7 One-Touch is the perfect coffee brew center for discerning coffee lovers (if you are reading this, you are one) who need an early morning caffeine fix in minutes. Just as its name implies, a simple push of a button delivers rich, cafe-quality coffee, which is ideal for those who are not up to complex programming or measuring the influence of dreaded A.M brain fog.
If you’re not familiar with the term, TFT is a more high-tech version of a standard LCD. The colors are brighter, and the image is sharper, thus enabling you to see what you’re doing much more easily. The screen itself is 2.8 inches, and it uses a rotary dial to select the kind of coffee you like. What’s noticeable about the F8 is that it’s a full-service coffee maker, but it’s smaller than other models that Jura offers.
There are many ways to make a single coffee drink and preferences will naturally vary. With the Jura coffee machine, there are tons of opportunities to customize the details and fine-tune your daily coffee experience. If there is something you don’t like or want prepared differently, you can reprogram the ratios for certain beverages to match your personal tastes. For example, if you like you macchiato with slightly less milk (I know I do), you can adjust the ratio so there is a bit more coffee than the factory setting serves. If you like your coffee extra hot, that setting can be adjusted globally on the Jura as well. Don’t worry though, anything you customize can be reversed for a one off coffee drink in case you want to make something for a guest and they don’t necessarily share you tastes in coffee. We love that Jura understands everyone has slightly difference tastes and makes adjusting the settings of the machine easy to do.
You also get programmable push-button controls for milk, hot water and espresso outputs and given the fact that the 1003380 Accademia dispenses great beverages on demand, it’s great for those who don’t like to wait for long before their drink is ready. In total, there are 7 buttons that you can use in order to prepare one of the following drinks hot water, latte macchiato, latte, cappuccino, cafe lungo, cafe and of course, espresso.