I’m a juice fanatic. I’ve posted many times about my love affair with green juice, it’s no secret that I juice pretty much daily (at least 5 times a week). I’m giving you a fair warning here: this post is going to be massively nerdy (in a juicing way, not a star trek way).
Because of the intensity with which I make juice, it should be no surprise to anyone that my old Juiceman II kicked the bucket after like 10+ years of loyal service. Truth to be told, I was kind of over the Juiceman — being a centrifugal model it made inferior juice and was noisy and a massive pain in the ass to clean, and sucked at juicing leafy greens, so its death was a blessing in disguise. It did last a long time, though!
I spent a long time trying to figure out which juicer to get to replace the Juiceman. For those of you who don’t know, there are three types of juicers: centrifugal, masticating, and twin gear. The centrifugal kind are the cheaper models that spin around the produce at high velocity to get the juice out. They tend to be cheap and easy to clean, but don’t work that great for juicing greens and make lower quality juice. The twin gear and masticating juicers make juice by crushing the produce slowly. They are much more expensive and trickier to clean, but yield better quality juice.
The Juiceman II was a centrifugal juicer. When I lived in London, I also had a centrifugal juicer (Cookworks Juice Extractor). They were great and everything, but I really wanted to step up my juicing game. I knew I wanted a masticating or twin gear juicer, and after reading many reviews, I decided on the Kuvings NS-950 Silent Upright Masticating Juicer. So far, I’m in freaking love with it!
Making juice and cutting ingredients.
You have to cut produce a lot smaller for this juicer than you would a cheaper/centrifugal juicer. This came as a slight surprise to me, since I was used to putting whole apples and things like that into the old juicer, but now that I’m used to it, I don’t mind taking the time to cut things up into bite size pieces. If you don’t cut something small enough, sometimes the juicer will get jammed and that’s when the “reverse” button comes in handy. This has only happened to me twice in the months that I’ve had this juicer – I think I was doing broccoli stems the first time, and the second time I hadn’t peeled a lime all the way. If you’re into juicing hard veggies like carrots, you may want to watch out for this and make sure you cut those pieces small. Celery is another thing – it’s best to chop it up into bite size chunks. Citrus fruits and other fruits with rinds will need to be peeled first.
It works beautifully for juicing greens, which was my main concern. It also makes killer fruit juice if that’s your thing.
The main thing I was worried about with buying a new juicer was how difficult it would be to clean. The Juiceman II was one of the first centrifugal juicers ever made, and you had to unscrew the mesh filter (like, with an actual screwdriver) to clean it. I can’t describe how much I hated this. I lost one of the screws, the other two were at constant risk of getting stripped, and I had to keep a mini screwdriver with the juicer at all times. It was really god damn annoying. I had heard that masticating juicers were more difficult to clean, so I was not looking forward to cleaning the Kuvings. To my surprise, however, cleaning it was much easier than I thought it’d be – and definitely easier than cleaning the Juiceman.
The Kuvings comes with two tools to help you clean it: one round tool that goes over the filter and another brush that looks kind of like an oversized toothbrush. I’m gonna be honest, the filter cleaning tool doesn’t really do much, but the toothbrush looking one is fantastic. The hardest thing to clean is the filter, since things get stuck in it sometimes, but I still usually manage to wash everything up in less than five minutes.
There are basically four parts to clean: the bowl, the chute, the gear that grinds the produce and the mesh filter. The mesh filter is the only thing that requires a little bit of scrubbing, but even still, it’s not really that bad.
Quality of juice.
The thing I like the most about this juicer is the amount of juice I get. For the same amount of produce, I probably get twice the amount of juice from the Kuvings as I have from any of the centrifugal juicers I’ve owned in the past. Because of this, I’ve actually adjusted my juice recipe to use less produce than I used to, which is great because it means I spend less money.
The juice from the Kuvings DOES have more pulp than a centrifugal juicer, you could probably run the juice through a fine mesh strainer if this bothers you – personally, I don’t care about the pulp so I don’t bother to.
Another thing that doesn’t bother me but may bother other people is the amount of foam on top of the juice. The juice made by the Kuvings usually has a lot of foam on the top of it. On my old Cookworks centrifugal juicer, the juice catcher had a lid on it that scraped off the foam – the Kuvings doesn’t have this. If this bugs you, it’s easy enough to scrape off the foam (or, y’know, you could just NOT DRINK IT since it stays on the top anyways). Personally I think the foam is the best part so I actually like it.
Overall. I’m in love with this juicer. I’ve used it daily since I got it 2 months ago and it hasn’t given me any problems of note. It’s easy to assemble, clean, and take apart. The price tag is a little high but as I’ve learned 1000 times over, you get what you pay for. If you’ve been thinking about getting one, I say go for it. I have no complaints about this one so far.