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.
Like the Sage Express, Panasonic’s NC-ZA1 is a “bean to cup” espresso machine: it takes whole beans, grinds them and pushes hot water through them at pressure to produce a cup of coffee. That’s pretty much where the similarities end, however, because unlike the old-school Express, the NC-ZA1 makes almost the entire process automated – and controllable via touchscreen.
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.
While we can sing the praises of the E6 all day, the fact is that there is a bit of a learning curve with it. The instruction manual can be a little confusing to some people, and setting up your cleaning system can take a while. Also, plan on spending more time with maintenance than you would with other coffee makers. In the end, it ensures that your machine is always ready to go, but it can be a bit of a time investment.
The ultra-modern frother technology prepares milk foam of unprecedented quality. The foam is both fine and compact, giving it a creamy consistency with a subtle sweetness. The frothers have two separate chambers in which the milk is frothed twice. Any bubbles that form will burst, compacting the foam and making it extremely fine. Three bars in the frother spout slow down the foam as it exits the frother, so it is poured slowly and evenly into the cup.
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.