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Buy Buy, Baby: The $3,000 Coffee Maker

Stocks in this article: YUM SBUX VLKAY

"Buy Buy, Baby" is a new Friday feature that explores unique luxury goods and what makes them special. Check back every week for more items to put on your wish list.

Americans have a tendency to evolve from Neanderthal to gourmet almost overnight.

Jug wine gave way to California cabernet. Meat loaf and mashed potatoes ceded its dominance to steak frites. Even kitchen counters must be granite, and all food must be kept in a Sub-Zero refrigerator.

The $3,000 Impressa Z5 is popular in Europe because it's like having a barista in your kitchen.

Coffee too. Dunkin' Donuts (YUM) brew, while at the low end, at least tastes good, something you couldn't have said about your parents' Chock full o' Nuts. While Starbucks (SBUX) sets the standard for coffee snobs, the latest thing is high-end coffee makers for the home and office. Even Italian supercar maker Lamborghini (VLKAY) has made a model.

That being the case, consider the Jura-Capresso Impressa Z5, which sounds like a combination between the Subaru (FUJHY) Impreza rally car and the BMW Z-series roadsters. The Swiss-designed coffee maker costs $3,000, 150 times more than the standard Mr. Coffee drip.

Thing is, you shouldn't have to compromise, especially before facing the world. Plus, the drinks it makes "satisfy all your coffee fantasies," the company promises. Mr. Coffee probably would never say that.

"It's like having a little barista in your kitchen," Matthew Hott, manager at The Cook's Warehouse in midtown Atlanta, says of the Z5.

For $300 more, the Impressa Z6 offers the same features with a shiny finish instead of the Z5's understated brushed alloy metal-and-black veneer.

As for the machine, there are buttons to prepare one-stop espressos, lattes and six other coffee drinks. Place a cup under the espresso or milk-added drink spouts and press a button. (Or program the night before; an insulated unit keeps milk cold up to eight hours.) Milk-added drinks can be prepared without moving the cup, something of a revolution in cappuccino makers, made possible by espresso and steaming nozzles placed next to each other.

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