Whatever you’re into, the Impressa F8 has a coffee for you. While it’s great for the common choices like espresso and americano, it’s just as capable of serving up a macchiato too, or pretty much anything else you can think of. Of course, the more skilled you are as a barista, the more experimental you’ll be able to be, but if you just want something easy, stick with the 13 preset programmes and enjoy what Jura’s experts have created for you in advance.
Now we’ve looked at what the machine can do, let’s turn our attention to what really matters, what real life customers think. We’ve had a good look around at reviews on the web, and collated the common themes. Hopefully this will give you a real feel for what is good and not so good about this machine, with some battle testing thrown into our Jura Impressa F8 review!
Alright, for the person whose coffee/espresso interest borders on obsession (or strong passion if you will) the F7 probably won’t satisfy. Mainly because of the built-in grinder. For someone who’s aiming for perfection in their brew, a precision standalone grinder and a standalone coffee maker is going to be what they need to look for to really dial in their perfection.
We always like to find a negative or two, and this has to be the biggest one by far for the Jura. For us, the temperature is fine, but we do understand that some people like their coffee as near to boiling point as possible without burning the coffee. It’s probably going to be a minority of coffee lovers that find this to be a deal breaker (hint: if that’s you, take a look at Heston’s Dual Boiler), for most of us, we find that it takes the roof of our mouth off!
Yep, the Barista Express isn’t just an elegant, well-built espresso machine – it also features a built-in grinder, allowing you to make coffee with beans you’ve smashed into dust literally seconds earlier. Freshness means a lot in the coffee world, so this is a Big Deal – as is the low-pressure pre-infusion of the grounds before the water is forced through them at higher 50 bar pressure.
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.
Also, we went through a brief episode in which it would refuse to brew anything (as if it didn't have the power to punch the water through the puck of coffee). I remedied this with a descaling cycle as well as wiping out the parts above the removable tray thoroughly. (I use filtered water in the machine, but the descaling seems to be a more serious cleaning than the normal automatic cleaning.)
The IMPRESSA J9 is probably the most popular model after the newer Micro 9 due to its breadth of features and overall precision when brewing and crafting a litany of specialty coffee drinks. The concept behind the J9 could not be simpler: simply use the rotary dial to select your desired drink, press the button, and sit back and enjoy. This model is absolutely beautiful and looks like it was pulled right out of an Italian café. The matte sheen and silver hard plastic give the J9 and functional sophistication that will definitely impress you.
Strength and temperature selection for a precise cup – The unit has four selections for the strength of coffee you want and lets you control the brew temperature for different drinks. This is a great way to customize a cup of coffee for guests and family. Instead of a pot evaporating away on the heater all day, just dial in the strength desired and 60 seconds later, you have your perfect cup of coffee.
When prompted by the machine that it’s time to clean, find the “clean” option under the various cleaning programs and be prepared to follow the instructions it gives you. This is usually as quick as emptying the grounds tray and pressing the rotary dial one more time. Please a cup or jug under the spout to capture the cleaning waste that will be dispelled from the machine. You will hear the machine perform an initial rinse, and then prompt you to add the cleaning tablet which will be inserted into the pre-ground coffee compartment. After another push of the rotary button, the machine will go through an approximately 20 minute cycle so you’ll want to do it when you have a bit of time.
The Jura ENA 5 automatic coffee machine aims to make life easier by doing just about everything for you: grinding the beans, tamping, brewing, and even ejecting the used coffee grounds (with a press of the button). When brewing a tasty cup of coffee, the ever-so-slim design fits on the counter top beneath your kitchen cabinets, keeping the kitchen looking great and clutter-free.
If you want to steam and froth milk for 1 or 2 cups, you can take advantage of the dual Frother+ system that’s very simple to use. Featuring settings for cappuccino and latte, you can easily prepare your favorite drink in seconds. You’ll then be alerted when the machine is ready to steam and if you want, you can also dial in your desired steaming time by using the Rotary Switch.
As an anecdote, I once failed one of my shots, it happens to everyone. The biggest problem with that cup was that it had almost no crema. I sipped it anyway, I wanted to see how it was. I was absolutely stunned by the taste of that shot. The unique combination of tamping and grind size made that cup more flavorful. It just didn’t have enough crema. Never judge an espresso by its looks. This is why some people hate Nespresso with a passion, it is very consistent, and it gives you a great shot with ample crema every time, but it is never fantastic. I love “fantastic”, but for the convenience, I settle for good, so Nespresso is one of my favorite coffeemakers. If convenience is what you are looking for mostly, take a look at our article that compares capsule-based espresso machines.
Don’t you wish there was an easier way to have café-quality coffee without leaving your house? You know the coffee that makes you smile after every sip. Wouldn’t it be great to have a mini café shop, with you being the number one customer, in your kitchen? The Jura Capresso Impressa coffee machine brings delightful made-to-order coffee prepared for perfection without spending $5 every time. Check out the Jura Capresso Impressa S8.
The Impressa’s control panel is based around a central colour display that’s used to guide you though the process, which helps to turn a maze of functions into an intuitive set of menus (or a carousel as Jura call it). The control of the menus is achieved by a ‘rotary switch’ located on top of the machine at the front, neatly sandwiched between the power and program buttons. The buttons either side of the screen vary in purpose, depending what’s on the screen at the time. in general though, the screen splits into four zones, with each button used to select the corresponding zone.
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.
The first machine I received never worked correctly. The milk would not steam and the espresso would start to come out and then stop. Upon stopping a message would display on the screen asking to press a button to fill the pump. This would occur 2-3 times before an expresso could actually be made. I experimented with several different grind settings, coffee strength, water temperatures, etc, but with no success. The machine continued to pump a few drops of espresso, asking to refill the pump, and waste the previous grinds. I literally wasted 2-3 cans of Illy espresso without ever getting espresso. In addition, with each espresso cycle, a large amount of water would precede any espresso. For example on a 1oz shot, about 0.1oz would be water that didn't run through the coffee.
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.