Yes, I'm going to ask the question. Sorry in advance.
I'd love to have a good semiauto in the house. I've had an Expobar Brewtus in the past, and I loved the coffee it made. However, I didn't love how long it took me to make a couple coffees in the morning, and I didn't love that I was the only one in the house that knew how to operate the thing. if my wife or nanny or housekeeper (or whoever) wanted a coffee, I had to make it. If I wasn't home or was in the middle of something, I had to hear about how they hated this expensive counter art that was useless to them. So the Brewtus went away and was replaced by a Jura J5. It's fine. Not great, but fine, and everyone is now happy because they can press a button and get coffee.
Now my wife wants to take the J5 into work, and has given me the green light to replace it with another superauto (up to ~$3K budget). It had been a few years since I'd shopped around, so you can imagine my elation when I initially came here and read the glowing (for a superauto) comments about the Quickmill Monza Deluxe. I was all set to throw down the Visa, and in one final OCD moment I pulled out the tape measure and discovered (to my horror) that at 17.5" tall it's 1.5" too tall to fit anywhere on our kitchen counter (only 16" inches clearance counter to cabinet). Sigh.
We don't do a lot of milk drinks so what's most important to us (taking the general superauto convenience as a given) is 1) brew quality 2) build quality 3) water, coffee, dreg capacity, and 4) aesthetics (yes, I admit it). I loved that the Monza Deluxe is a metal brew group, mostly metal construction, and huge water and dreg bins. As far as I can tell, it's in a class of its own in all these areas. So, I've narrowed my choice down to the Jura Z7 or J9, but I'd love to hear from folks here:
1) is there any way to shorten the Monza Deluxe to 16" height? (I don't see any 'feet' that can be removed) 2) is there anything else out that's closer to the Monza Deluxe than the Jura or Saeco offerings? 3) assuming the answer to 1 and 2 is no... does anyone have any insight as to any differences in *coffee* quality between the Jura J9 and Z7? There are lots of touchscreen, button, aesthetic and milk drink convenience differences, but there's a dearth of information on the actual brewgroups (# of thermoblocks, wattage, etc) between the two. In a brief demo of both at my local Sur la Table, the J9 seemed to brew a hotter espresso than the Z7, but that was just n=1.
After carrying a few different brands (Saeco, Solis, Gaggia, and Jura) of superautos, we decided to narrow our range to Jura. The main reason is that it holds the most ground coffee in the brew group, and this would lead to a better cup. There are some slight temp differences between the machines, and I personally think the S9 model produces a hotter cup. However, no superauto without a heat brewed group will compare to a traditional machine.
Several years ago, we had several Quickmill superauto machines in for evaluation. Although they had metal brew groups with heaters, we found them to be excessively hot. I did try the machine in Milan last October, and the espresso was pretty good. Hopefully, they corrected this on the Monza (prolly did as they have PID technology now and I hope they use) as they did make a few cups before serving me. I know Chris brings the Monza in, and I know he would take care of you, but you may want to conform that this machine is UPSable or you are able to diagnose problems and make repairs, as freight trucks can be very expensive. Superautos do get complicated and are not as easy as traditional machines. Good luck with your decision!
Sincerely, Jim Piccinich Business Partner 1st-line Equipment, LLC www.1st-line.com
When I was a bachelor my priorities were hot wings, beer, going to bars, ummm ... going to bars, wings, beer ...
"Coffee leads men to trifle away their time, scald their chops, and spend their money, all for a little base, black, thick, nasty, bitter, stinking nauseous puddle water." ~The Women's Petition Against Coffee, 1674
The J6 (successor to the J5) is an option. I don't know (Jura doesn't really say) if there's any difference in brewgroup between the J6 and the J9 or Z7, or if there's another brand of machine I should be looking at.
The brewgroup is the same in all of the machines in the J and Z line. The differences are in software, user interface (And the Z line has a separate heater for steam). In Canada, getting a single boiler Jura repaired costs less than $200, includes a rebuild of the brewgroup and is probably not necessary more than once every 4 years. It is probably the same in the United States and is probably cheaper in Europe. A Z for general service, is about $250. Commercial units more. People at Jura say that the brew units go 4000-5000 coffees or 4 years between needing brewgroup rebuilds.
And get your priorities straight. Coffee in the mornings... Beer and wings in the afternoon.
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