We found the Jura J9 to be intuitive to navigate and the state of the art TFT display which features text and images, combined with the rotary selector makes choosing your beverage simple. A standout feature of this model if the “fine foam” technology which utilizes three bars in the frother spout which acts to slow down the foam as it exits the frother so its poured at the right speed and evenly into the cup. The stainless steel vacuum milk container that feeds the frother warms the milk or cream and is easy to clean. The hardened steel grinding heads of the built-in canonical grinder deliver precision ground coffee every single time. There isn’t a single thing the IMPRESSA J9 doesn’t do well and it probably the most well-rounded model on our list.
Jura does not make any budget-friendly machines, so you should come in expecting to make an investment. Prices range from $800 for a single cup machine, to above $5,000 for Jura’s top of the line model. You can always search for refurbished models, and Jura occasionally offers factory serviced machines that function like new, but have been returned to the company for unspecified reasons.
The filter baskets are also a critical part of your espresso making. Not all filters are the same, and some are better, some are not so great. You can get great results with one filter basket, and mediocre with another one. Experiment, and follow the manufacturer’s instructions. In most cases, using the single filter basket produces better results. Usually, the grind/tamping ratios are different for the different baskets.
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.

The other thing to keep in mind is that the milk frother can be a little finicky. We discussed the fact that most frothers don’t (or can’t) heat the milk to the same level as the coffee, and this machine is no different. Also, cleaning the spout can be a little tricky. Overall, when buying the E6, just plan on spending some time to get to know it. Once you’ve mastered all of the little things, it will become second nature.
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.
The digital control panel makes it easy to play with the programmable menu settings, including coffee strength, temperature, auto off and start time. You can also prepare cappuccino and espressos without having to wait between them thanks to the double boiler system that the ESAM5500B features. Lastly, no matter what coffee you plan on using with it, it’s going to be properly ground thanks to the professional quality conical low pitch burr grinder.
Milk Frother. Fitted with two exchangeable spouts, this unit provides a choice between two options. One option is like a professional grade spout that allows the user to froth the milk manually. The other is for those who are less interested in the intricacies of froth, providing a pre-set option for either cappuccino (more foam) or latte (less foam).

Operation is dead simple with the three-button interface on the top of the machine where you select from thee user-defined cup sizes (espresso, lingo and ristretto) and two aroma levels. The special aroma preservation technology does a great job of keeping the beans fresh and the Aroma Plus grinder precisely grinds them to a consistent size every time. The intelligent pre-heating feature is going to ensure that the coffee is always hot and topped with a light and airy crema.


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.
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