As previously mentioned, this grinder is a bit less sturdy than its new revision, the 565. The 560 has the same issues with its mechanical timer, with the grind mechanism starting before you have had a chance to set the time. This results in a somewhat inconsistent grind quantity. The hopper lid is also not completely airtight, so it isn’t recommended that you keep your beans in it for more than a few days. The same issue with static buildup is also present, and may lead to a messy countertop.
As a home barista, you need to master all the above techniques to get the right espresso. If you make a little mistake you compromise your shot. As a result, you’ll get an average shot. Even if you know what it takes to get your shot right, there is very little room for error. Failed shots are pretty common with beginner baristas. You probably noticed in coffee shops that the shot differs from barista to barista.
Along with premium engineering, Capresso products are designed with high-end aesthetics in mind. Clean black trims, aesthetic curves, and clean stainless steel finishes are all common branding traits. Capresso products are also notably ergonomic, featuring comfortable handles, easily visible and extruded controls, and a notable lack of rough edges. With design awards to back it up, Capresso produces beautiful, innovative, and powerful coffee equipment.
In addition, the Capresso website offers plenty of data for using this espresso machine. Among other things, it provides a downloadable user manual along with PDF files containing a variety of delicious hot milk frothing recipes so you can prepare such things as different types of teas, soothing milk drinks and several different types of hot chocolate drinks.
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.
And that’s it. There’s very little in the way of cleaning or maintenance to be done, bar an occasional emptying of the drip tray, an occasional rinsing of the removable pod holder and, of course, the refilling of the water tank. The tank isn’t huge (0.8l), so you’ll need to do the latter fairly frequently. The drip tray, for its part, is adjustable – you can place it at one of three heights to suit the size of drinking vessel and reduce the chance of spillage.
3) This machine is crazy smart. It knows exactly when to clean itself, or tells you when to start the cleaning cycle. To clean it, all you do is insert a tablet in the coffee powder drawer and it does its thing. It knows when it needs water, when the filter needs to be changed, etc. In fact, since we have a water filter built into our refrigerator, we just use that filtered water in the coffee machine and therefore we don't need to use the expensive water filters. Bottom line, if you just pay attention and clean the machine on a regular basis when it tells you to, this is a no-brainer machine.
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.
Setup is way easier than the manual would have you believe - the pathetic printed booklet is by far the weakest link in this coffee production line. Fitting the water filter and the Smart Connect dongle is not explained well at all. You’ll find answers to most of your questions online - but probably not on JURA’s website. Unofficial YouTube videos proved much more useful.
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.
In front of the water tank sits a large cone that holds either the machine's permanent gold filter or reusable Type 4 paper filters. Below that is a sturdy stainless steel thermal carafe to accept and decant your brew. On the left side of the metal coffee pot, you'll find a small keypad complete with tiny LCD screen and minuscule membrane-style buttons. The display also includes a digital clock for checking the time and programming automatic brewing cycles.
It might seem like a trivial point, but not all machines have thought about this. The Jura’s power cable emerges at the bottom of the rear of the machine, making it very easy to plug it in and neatly arrange any excess cable out of sight. There’s also a ‘master’ power switch in the same location – worth noting as we discovered, having thought the machine was dead on arrival after pressing the power button on top and nothing happening!
Anyone who is looking for the perfect espresso machine, should certainly take a closer look at the Cuisinart EM-600. This model is able to brew excellent traditional coffee beverages and espresso shots at the touch of a button and without you having to worry about moving the cup. The EM-600 incorporates a removable milk tank (22 oz) which sends frothy, creamy and hot milk right into your cup for barista quality, hands free latte and cappuccino. If you want to use it with the Illy Espresso capsule system, you’ll be very happy to know that this model offers innovative froth controls, flavor strength and temperature control with the push of a button.
The Achilles heel of any super automatic, brewing times are, in my opinion, far too short for proper extraction of the good stuff from ground coffee. Part of the problem is the puck diameter - 46ml in the Jura Capresso S9. The other problem (and I blame the Swiss for this and their gosh darn love for caffe suise), is that the grinder can't be dialed fine enough.