Once mastered, this juicer will be a fun and healthy kitchen toy (er, appliance)
Jan 11, 2008
a Very Helpful Review
by the Epinions community
I suppose you could say that I married this juicer - or, more accurately, I married the guy who owned this juicer. I was introduced to the Waring juicer on one of our first dates when my husband-to-be brought along some of his freshly made apple-carrot juice, no doubt to impress me with his healthy approach toward life and his superior flavor mixing skills. Needless to say, it worked like a charm! Never having used a juicer before, I was intrigued and wanted to give it a try.
Recommend this product?
The big introduction
The juicer was there on the counter in all its modern-looking black and stainless steel glory. It is a pretty slick looking unit, if not a little on the bulky side. If you have the space and want to wow your friends (or prospective dates), it's a nice thing to leave out on the counter - which of course you might have to do regardless, since you may not have the cupboard space for it.
A flick of the switch caused the juicer to spring to life. The little metal on/off switch on the side of the unit seemed pretty good - it switched on with authority and felt quite durable. Suddenly the whole unit was buzzing with anticipation of extracting some juice from unsuspecting fruit.
I lifted up the plunger from the unit and prepared to drop in an apple slice. Whoops! It got stuck. Unfortunately there is only a tiny little hole (maybe an inch in diameter?) into which you can insert the fruit. I had to trim down the slice of apple quite a bit in order to get it to fit. Once I finally got it in there, it sounded like a saw mill. It was loud, but somehow satisfying. "Oh yeah, listen to that juice being extracted!" My excitement was short lived, however, when (to my horror) a plume of apple juice shot up and out of the open hole before I could get the plunger back in to seal it up. Now there was apple juice dripping from the kitchen cupboards and onto the floor. So much for that!
My rather patient husband-to-be sighed and showed me the tricks that he had mastered with this juicer. Apparently you have to be lightning fast to cover up the hole before juice can erupt out of the top. There's also an art to cutting up the produce into the appropriately sized pieces. He'd obviously become quite skilled...my question was, why did it have to be so complicated?
The mechanics of this juicer are interesting, too (okay, so I'm an engineer, I get a kick out of this sort of thing). When the pieces of fruit fall down the chute, they meet an unfortunate end at a spinning plate that looks like a cheese grater of sorts. The teeth shred the fruit into tiny bits and pieces, releasing the juice. The whirring motion sends all of the bits flying to the outside of the cylinder (thank you, centrifugal force), where they are forced through a fine mesh. The juice goes through, the pulp stays. Pretty simple. It's important to note, however, that you have to keep the mesh clean. Otherwise the juice won't be able to pass through, thus limiting the efficiency of the juicer.
As I watched the artist at work, my attention was drawn to the juice streaming into the large 32 oz stainless steel cup. As a side note, the cup is really nice - it's big, it's hefty, and it looks really commercial. Perfect for getting those juice mixtures just right. Anyway, I was impressed with how much juice this machine could pull from seeming un-juicy things like carrots (I had never juiced anything before, so what did I know?). It was shocking to me to realized that true fruit and vegetable juice tastes JUST like the fruit or vegetable, and not some watered down mixture of other flavors and preservatives. What a novel idea!
Once the show was over, it was time for cleanup. Boy, what a mess! Everything comes apart easily enough, although I must say that there is a LOT of plastic parts. It would be nice if more of the stainless steel was used for the moving and locking parts, instead of just the decorative parts (I can see why some people have commented on the durability). For cleaning, the brush provided with the juicer did a nice job of getting the pulp out of the fine mesh. The only trouble is that it does take a fair amount of time and diligence. I suppose it's to be expected, since there is a lot of juice and pulp flying around inside.
So what's the bottom line?
Like I said, I haven't tried any other juicers, so I can't make any direct comparisons. What I can say is that this unit has worked well for us and served our needs. We don't put it through a lot of abuse (we only use it occasionally, maybe every few weeks or months). I'm very careful when disassembling the juicer, just because I'm afraid of breaking the plastic parts. I suppose that my care has paid off in the long run.
It's unfortunate that using this juicer requires a set of learned skills and tricks in order to prevent a huge mess. It sure would be great if there was a flapper door over the hole to keep the juice from spewing out (I wonder if other models have one? It's worth thinking about...).
If you're looking for a reasonably priced juicer that performs well for occasional use, this could be the one for you. I've been happy with it thus far, and enjoy getting and mixing the freshest juice. In my book, it gets three stars because it serves our needs and has worked well, but can be quite messy and (in my opinion) contains far too many plastic parts.
Important note: This is NOT a citrus juicer. It's best for hard fruits and vegetables like apples, carrots, firm peaches and plums (take out the pit!!), etc. We found that softer fruits like berries and kiwi created more of a thick sludge than juice - which could be thinned out a bit, but it is more of a hassle.
Read more product reviews on Waring Pro JEX 328 400 Watts Juicer
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Amount Paid (US$): 70
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