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.
With a built-in coffee grinder, the Ena Micro 1 will grind your beans just before brewing, and store your beans in an airtight, aroma-preserving chamber on top of the machine. The variable brewing chamber allows for you to choose the individual preparation and strength of two cups at one time. And the included filter ensures your water is as pure as possible for the best-tasting espresso around.
The Gaggia RI8762 is truly a great espresso maker and since it incorporates an auto frothing milk carafe, you can easily use it in order to produce rich milk that has a creamy and delicious texture that’s perfect for lattes and cappuccinos. Just like the original Anima, the Gaggia RI8762 features a ceramic burr grinder which you can set so that it uses one of the five grind settings in order to easily accommodate the blend and roast of your espresso. In terms of maintenance, the Gaggia RI8762 is very simple to clean and that is thanks to the fact that it incorporates the company’s patented removable brew group.
It comes pre-loaded with default recipes for latte macchiato, cappuccino, an espresso shot, a ristretto shot, coffee, coffees, hot water, and steamed milk. All of the recipes can be customized via "Expert Mode". You can adjust the strength (1 - 5 beans), volume in ounces or mL's), steamed milk amount (based on time in seconds). You can also adjust all of the parameters while making the drink without saving, which is great for guests. Basic operation is very simple and straightforward. The TFT display makes this super user friendly. Anyone can easily scroll thru using the wheel on top of the machine and pick whatever type of drink they want. Or, you can select most drinks directly from the TFT screen as well. For two shots or two cups of coffee, hit the button twice. You can also enter the recipe modification mode by holding the drink selection button as well. Grind adjustment is via a knob under the back right top cover. It also displays graphics of your drink while it's being made.
While all of the brand’s machines take up substantial counter space, you can get all of the advanced features without taking over your kitchen. The Impressa F8 is designed as a two-cup coffee maker - it has dual nozzles in the front so that you can make them side by side. However, you can also use the spouts for perfectly frothed milk instead. So, if you’re looking for a high-quality cappuccino, you will get it without having to do anything extra.
Now that great espresso shots aren't hard to find, this machine is more about convenience and reliability than knock-your-socks-off espresso. But it does make great coffee - better than any Mr. Coffee or even Keurig. I keep Dark Roast Guatemalan Viennese in the bean hopper, pull two one-ounce shots, lengthen them with hot water, and I'm drinking awesome coffee before my neighbor has finished peeling the foil on his can of Maxwell House. And since I'm just buying good old whole beans, it's much cheaper to use than a Keurig.
When ditching the K-cup and grinding the coffee yourself, you open yourself up to better, earthy-friendly options. Many single-serve coffee manufactures source their coffee from large plantations, and as a consumer you have very limited choice about where your coffee comes from and how it’s produced. When you grind your own with the Jura coffee machine, you are able to make more eco-conscious decisions about the coffee you purchase. We prefer to buy organic, single-origin roasts that have been certified by the rainforest alliance. We understand that this isn’t always possible, but when you are grinding your own coffee, there are more options available to you as a conscious consumer.
Thinking that I must have received a defective unit, I requested an exchange from Amazon. I had a replacement unit the next day!! Amazon is amazing in this regard. The second unit worked well for the first week and then the same issue with the espresso not coming out and having to press the button to refill the pump started occurring again. More wasted espresso!!
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.