- Make really superior coffee
- Wide choice of coffee types to make
- Quick - coffee in an instant
- No more grinding beans
- Great looking addition to any kitchen
- Some can be noisy
- Larger than espresso machines - take up space
Bean to cup coffee makers have been commercially available for many years now. However, it has only been in the last few years that they have been available for people to enjoy in their own home.
The name says it all. You add the beans, add the cup and press the button, and the rest is done for you. No more grinding coffee. No more measuring ground coffee for each cup you brew. No more adding water every time you want a drink. No more needing to try to foam or steam milk manually.
The Rolls-Royce of the domestic bean to cup market are undoubtedly Swiss company Jura. (Check out Amazon for the best prices on Jura machines.) Domestic Jura bean to cup machines retail from $700 - $3000 dollars, for the ultimate brew â€“ and the last word in sleek, cutting edge design. Bean to cup machines do not come cheap, but, for ease of use, the different types of coffee that can be made and the resulting coffee, they are worth the investment â€“ trust me, I own one! (Mine is the Delonghi Magnifica).
What to consider in a bean to cup coffee machine:
How often you will use it â€“ if you are only likely to use a bean to cup machine a few times a week, or just at weekends, it may be worth considering a standard espresso maker. Ours makes at least 4 cups every day â€“ that's almost 1500 cups a year, so we get sufficient use, and save enough money on the coffees we don't buy outside the home now, to justify the outlay.
What kind of coffee you regularly drink â€“ some only make cappuccino or espresso, others make latte, cappuccino, espresso and more.
Whether you are going to plumb in to the water supply â€“ not all models offer this.
How large the water reservoir capacity is â€“ the bigger the better â€“ otherwise you may find the machine needing a daily top-up.
What kind of milk options it offers â€“ some only take milk in a reservoir or jug, while others have a steam nozzle. You generally get thicker, denser foam from a steam nozzle, but that's more effort!
Does it feature a cup warmer? Cup warmers mean you have hot coffee in a warm mug, keeping your drink warmer for longer.
Adjustable cup capacity â€“ does it offer one standard size, or are you able to pre-determine the cup size to suit your coffee cups?
Does it have a timer? Some do, meaning the machine can switch itself on and be ready for you as soon as you stumble out of bed in the morning.
Does it have a hot water facility? This is useful for making other drinks, or diluting down strong coffee.
Bean to cup coffee makers aren't cheap, but for a coffee connoisseur, they are a real joy to have in the home and a very worthwhile investment.