I’ll admit when it comes to coffee, I’m actually a bit of a snob. I haven’t always been this way, but I think growing up watching my dad drink Nescafe Blend 43 out of a red Nescafe mug while he was sucking on a durry put me off the thought.
It wasn’t really until recent years I decided that there’s an enormous difference between my Father’s swamp water and a decent brew. I went through a stage experimenting with a Breville machine that required the tampering of coffee and manual steaming of the milk. But to be honest, I’m just not into the mess or even willing to learn the techniques behind creating a perfect brew. So, I went down the Nespresso path that involves no mess and simple capsules, decent variety and importantly excellent results in terms of flavour.
Anyway, when an email landed in our EFTM inbox about the new Jura E8 fully automatic coffee machine, I thought why not have a crack? The E8 can accommodate roasted coffee beans or grounded coffee. It has a grinder within the piano black machine called the AromaG3. You simply tip a bag of beans or even grounded coffee into the top of the E8 and it does the rest. There’s a special extraction process that Jura call the Pulse Extraction Process (P.E.P) this helps to provide the ultimate coffee quality.
This process attempts to mimic what the best barista can do via technology. For example, it forces hot water through the ground coffee at short intervals, allowing the coffee and aroma to develop. You can even adjust the coffee intensity levels via eight different steps.
The whole point of this machine is its simplicity and ease of use. I usually settle for an expresso each morning, but if you’re a milk person the E8 really comes into its own. It has a new professional fine foam frother that produced the finest foam I’ve seen. Perfect for coffee specialities such as a cappuccino and macchiato. In fact there are now 50 per cent more coffee specialties on offer totalling 12.
Most people probably don’t even consider the quality of the water that goes into making the perfect coffee, Jura has gone to great lengths to perfect even this part of the process. On the left side of the machine sits a 1.9-litre water tank that includes a CLARIS water filter. It prevents limescale building up within the machine. But Jura goes even a step further via an Intelligent Water System (I.W.S) which links the filter cartridge and coffee machine wirelessly via RFID technology, the same type of tech used in tap and go cards.
But what I most care about is the simplicity and taste. Via a TFT colour display you can choose from multiple coffee types or even just hot water for green tea. A simple push of the button sets in motion a relatively quick and quiet process that heats up the machine, grinds the coffee and extract it straight into your cup hassle free.
The machine still requires a level of cleaning but much of that is automated as well. There’s various rinsing and cleaning programs that you can start via the touch of a button. But often I found the E8 would do it all on its own when shutting down. This ensures perfect hygiene and prevents the milk frother nozzle becoming clogged.
The only manual work you’ll need to preform is filling the water tank plus emptying out the drip and grounded coffee tray, the E8 prompts you to do this when required.
In conclusion this is a rather lavish purchase at $2,099 and I’m pretty certain it still can’t quite match the coffee a highly skilled barista produces. Also keep in mind it’s a rather large machine and you’ll also need room for the glass milk container that sits alongside it.
But we’ve fallen in love with the machine at home, simply because of ease of use, the cleanliness and consistently good cappuccinos and espresso shots. It’s as close you can get to the real thing, I’m dreading giving it back to the good people at Jura next week!