Super-automatic espresso machines require a lot of skills to make a perfect shot. But the Jura ENA Micro 90 does justice to its brand name.
It is a compact espresso machine that utilizes some of Jura’s most prized technologies. It provides maximum flavor extraction while fitting snugly on your kitchen counter.
A lot of things set this machine aside, including the self-cleaning function. Not only does it feature cleaning programmers, but it also uses a CLEARYL water filter. This means there is little to no scale buildup, to begin with.
But being compact, this machine has a smaller water tank. So, you need to change it out more frequently, a cumbersome task in commercial settings.
So, what’s the real deal?
Is this coffee machine worth all this hype, not to mention the price point? We took a look into the matter, and here’s what we found out:
The Jura Specialty:
Jura is indeed the most popular brand among super-automatic espresso machines. And as such, it features some signature technologies and innovations. Some of these are:
- Aroma G3 Grinder – a grinder that traps aroma and taste. The blades of the burr grinder are angled in such a way to retain fragrance and flavor on the grounds.
- CLEARYL/CLARIS Water Filter – clean water for a better-tasting coffee. This filter softens the water and prevents scale formation.
- IWS – filter detection. IWS technology can detect whether your filter needs changing or not. So, you don’t have to constantly keep checking up on it.
- Pulse Extraction Process (PEP) – more saturated coffee. This technology allows coffee to drip through in regular pulses. This ensures maximum coffee saturation and flavor extraction.
- Energy Save Mode (ESM) – lower energy consumption. With the ESM, you reduce your energy footprint and save up in the long run.
|Features||Jura ENA Micro 90||Jura ENA Micro 5||Jura ENA Micro 1|
|Taste||Highly saturated and fragrant.||Highly fragrant and saturated.||Extreme saturation and fragrance.|
|Brewing capacity||18 double, 37 singles.||37 singles and 18 doubles.||37 singles, 18 doubles.|
|User-friendliness||Rotary dial, digital display.||Push buttons, digital display.||Push buttons, digital display, rotating brew unit.|
|Design and materials||Plastic and stainless steel.||Stainless steel, aluminum brew unit, and Plastic.||Aluminum brew unit, Plastic, and stainless steel|
|Cleaning and maintenance||CLARIS filter with IWS.||CLEARYL filter with IWS.||CLEARYL filter with IWS.|
|Frothing||Steampipe and hot water spout.||No frothing.||No frothing.|
|Grinding||Aroma G3 grinder.||Aroma G3 grinder is another addition.||Aroma G3 grinder.|
|Additional features||Thermoblock heating, IPBAS, ESM, 6 types of coffee.||2 types of coffee, ESM, Thermoblock heating, IPBAS.||IPBAS, ESM, Thermoblock heating, and 2 types of coffee.|
|Value for money||Meets the value.||Reaches up to the required standard.||Fulfills the needs.|
Jura ENA Micro 90 Review:
Like many of Jura’s super-automatic espresso machines, the ENA Micro 90 utilizes its special Pulse Extraction Process. To keep things short, this process can extract high-quality taste and aroma from every grain of coffee. This imparts a highly saturated taste to your espresso shots and allows the flavor to develop fully.
The ENA Micro 90 also features Aroma G3 technology. Through this, the coffee grounds retain maximum flavor and aroma without losing any to the grinder blades.
Also, this machine has a CLARIS Plus smart filter that, among other things, maintains the quality of the water.
The Jura ENA Micro 5 also features the same technologies, except the CLEARYL Blue filter. Essentially, both are the same, and CLEARYL can work on larger quantities of water. Think of it as a “larger” version of the CLARIS.
You get the same functionality in the ENA Micro 1. This also includes the IPBAS technology that helps preserve aroma in the coffee grounds.
The Jura ENA Micro 90 features a medium-sized water tank that can hold up to 37 ounces of water. Most single shot espressos are 1 ounce whereas double shots are 2 ounces. So, you can make up to 37 single shots of espresso and 18 double shots.
Along with that, this machine can be used to make an American-sized mug of cappuccino. In that case, you can make up to 7 cups of cappuccino with this ultimate coffee machine.
It also features a single bean hopper that can hold 4.4 ounces of beans. Admittedly, its capacity is quite low. This is especially considering that many super-automatic machines are used in commercial settings. But for personal and office use, this is a good choice.
As compared to that, the Micro 5 has a slightly lower capacity, at 36.8 ounces. The bean hopper capacity is still the same (4.4 ounces). Again, the capacity is not enough for a commercial setting.
The Jura ENA Micro 1 also features the same capacity, with a water tank volume of 37 ounces. Moreover, the coffee ground container can only make 10 servings until it needs to grind the beans again.
When you’ve got a complicated super-automatic espresso machine, you’ll want the controls to be simple. The Jura ENA Micro 90 does just that, featuring a highly minimalistic design that takes up less space.
This machine flaunts a single brew group in the center, with a hot water spout and a milk pipe at either side. All the controls are present on the top. There is a single circular button that lets you choose between a Latte, Espresso, Coffee, Macchiato, and Cappuccino.
Unfortunately, there is no labeling on these buttons and all you have to go off the symbols. You can simply look at the user’s manual to get accustomed to them. But that’s just more work.
The Jura ENA Micro 5 has a similar design, but with fewer options. There is no milk frothing pipe or hot water spout. However, you do get a rotating coffee spout that changes depending on your selection.
Even the Jura ENA Micro 1 has the same features. It doesn’t have a milk frothing pipe or even a hot water spout. You do get a milk frother separately, but having all the features in one place would’ve been better.
Design and Materials:
When choosing an espresso machine, the choice of materials is crucial to both operation and longevity. The Jura ENA Micro 90 makes use of two primary materials; plastic and stainless steel.
The conical burr grinder and drip tray cover are all made from steel. Whereas the water reservoir, steam wand, primary housing, and brew unit are made from plastic. Plastic is resistant to corrosion and water and dust damage. But it isn’t all that good against heat.
Stainless steel is an excellent choice, as it’s impact-resistant and corrosion-free. However, do consider the fact that steel itself has poor water-resistance.
As opposed to that, ENA Micro 5 has somewhat a better choice of materials. It uses stainless steel-lined aluminum in the brew unit. Aluminum is a much better choice than steel; it’s stronger and lasts longer.
A similar construction is featured in the Jura ENA Micro 1. Regardless to say, both these products use more superior materials than the Micro 90.
Cleaning and Maintenance:
A truly automatic espresso machine should have automated cleaning too. The Jura ENA Micro 90 stays one step ahead. It features Jura’s signature CLARIS Plus filter along with the Intelligent Water System (IWS).
The CLARIS filter cleans the water as it enters the system. This not only improves taste and aroma retention but also reduces calcium deposits. It softens the water to prevent scale formation and general corrosion.
There’s also the IWS technology that will inform you when the filter needs changing. You also get a cleaning, rinsing, and descaling function programmed into the machine.
The same technologies are featured in the Micro 5 and Micro 1. Although both these machines use a CLEARYL Blue filter instead of CLARIS. They are the same, save for the fact that CLEARYL will require changing less often. The difference is hardly noticeable.
Frothing is the main concern that many people have with espresso machines. The Jura ENA Micro 90 pays close attention to the quality of milk and frothing convenience. It features a single long pipe that dispenses hot steam at high pressure. This means that you can froth your milk in a separate milk jug.
While operating the steaming process, the Micro 90 takes great care to maintain hygiene. It maintains TUV-certified hygiene inside the milk system that automatically rinses and cleans it.
As for dispensing hot water, you can do that through the touch of a button. But there’s only one boiler for both the brewing and the frothing/hot water cycle. So, you can’t brew and froth at the same time.
Unfortunately, neither the Jura ENA Micro 5 nor the Micro 1 feature frothing. You do get a separate milk frother as an accessory. But it doesn’t have the traditional steam wand or pipe design. So, you’ll have to struggle a lot.
Jura is perhaps the pioneer of qualitative grinding. This Micro 90 model, along with many of Jura’s other machines, features a smart Aroma G3 grinder. In this, the grinder’s blades are cut at such angles to keep the aroma locked in. The hopper lid is airtight to prevent all that precious flavor and taste from escaping.
The fact that it preserves taste and aroma is an advantage. Many automatic espressos machines are bad at keeping the smell and flavor locked in.
The burr grinder itself is conical and made from stainless steel. This makes it last longer than other grinding materials. So you get finely ground coffee every time. However, keep in mind that you cannot feed ground coffee or capsules into the machine.
Jura’s Micro 5 and Micro 1 also feature the same technology. These machines maximize flavor and aroma while grinding. You cannot use ground coffee or ESE pods for these machines. You can only feed whole coffee beans to the hopper.
Along with all the other features, it employs a few other technologies. The first and most prominent of these is the Thermoblock boiler technology. Through this, heat is retained inside the boiler. This translates to lesser heating time and coffee is freshly heated every time you pull a shot.
The Micro 90 also makes use of its specialized Energy Save Mode (ESM). Through this, the energy consumption of the product is closely monitored and regulated. So you don’t get extensively long bills to pay every month.
Additionally, the Micro 90 also features an Intelligent Pre-Brew Aroma System (IPBAS). This, when paired with the PEP, allows the flavor of the coffee to develop to the fullest. You also get 2 different programmable temperatures along with 10 coffee strength levels.
All of these technologies are also featured in the Micro 5 and the Micro 1. Along with that, the height of the coffee spout can also be adjusted, from 1.2 to 4.4 inches. A standard mug of Cappuccino is about 4 inches tall. So, this is a great feature to have.
However, the Micro 90 can make more types of coffee, including Latte, Macchiato, and Americano. The Micro 5 and Micro 1 can only make espressos and cappuccinos.
Value for Money:
Finally, we get to the main question: is it worth buying the ENA Micro 90 coffee machine? And the short answer is; Yes!
The Micro 90 costs less than your average automatic espresso machine. And this is mainly because of the small size and the shorter reservoir capacity. The technologies featured in it are enough to raise its price too. But they keep the price at a nominal value, one that you can probably afford.
Also, don’t forget that you can make up to 6 different types of beverages with this. Its uses are endless. It’s great for personal and office use. And it has some limited applications in the commercial area.
The Jura ENA Micro 5 has a lower price, and rightly so. It doesn’t have built-in frothing or a hot water spout. And it can only make cappuccinos or espressos. The use of special technologies still raises the price a bit.
And priced even lower than that, you have the Jura ENA Micro 1. It’s not clear why the price is slightly lower, but it may have to do with the programmability of the product.
Who Should Buy the Jura ENA Micro 90?
It is indeed a super-automatic espresso machine. So only buy it if you need super-automatic machines. Otherwise, a simple semi-automatic will work just fine.
For commercial use, it has limited applications. It’s small in size, so it saves more space. It also has a lower water tank capacity, so you’ll need to refill it quite often. However, with the added functionality of 6 different types of coffee, this product is a great choice for commercial use.
Also, if you’re a differently-abled person who finds it awkward to make the coffee, this is for you. Not only does it automate the brewing, but the cleaning and maintenance are also mechanical. So, you don’t have to do anything apart from changing out the filter from time to time.
What’s more, is, this machine is small, sleek, and compact. So, it’s a good choice if you don’t have a lot of clearance on your kitchen counter. This is especially useful if the space available on top of your counter is very low in height.
Who Shouldn’t Buy the Jura ENA Micro 90?
As mentioned, it is a super-automatic machine. And as such, it will cost more. So don’t buy this product if you have no immediate need for it. Also, consider the fact that it’s fairly hard to operate.
You need to program the temperature, brew time, and brew strength. This will especially bother you if you’re new to super-automatic machines.
Also, consider the fact that it has lower water tank capacity as compared to other machines. So, you’ll need to refill the tank more often.
FAQs For the Jura ENA Micro 90:
Yes indeed! It gives you 2 levels of programmability when it comes to temperature. This, paired with the other programs, greatly enhances the control you have over the machine.
The finish is mostly plastic, but it has some stainless-steel components, such as the drip tray cover and grinder.
If you want plain coffee, you can make up to 5-6 cups of coffee, depending on the size of the cup. However, keep in mind that you can only make 1 cup at a time. For subsequent cups, you’ll need to restart the brew cycle.
Jura has certainly set the bar high for other espresso machine brands. And the Jura ENA Micro 90 furthers that thought. This is a fully-automatic espresso machine that is both lightweight and highly portable.
It’s the ideal choice for use in your homes, especially small cramped apartments. In a commercial setting, it provides you with 6 different coffee functions. And you get full control over the machine’s temperature and brew strength.
So, what are you waiting for? Your very first Jura espresso machine is waiting for you.