I’m Italian and I bought a Nespresso coffee machine. Precisely, a Krups Expert&Milk, black version, with Aeroccino and all the nice bluetooth functionalities. It costed more than I hoped and way more than I planned. But I’m truly happy with it.
Yes, an italian is happy with a coffee machine. Unbelievable, eh? 🙂
No, really. I was a staunch defender of the italian espresso tradition. Partly I still am but more soft than in the past. Living outside of italy since 3 years changed me, my tastes and my approach with coffee.
There’s not just espresso
While I love, I truly love, a well done shot of espresso, with a great little foam and strong notes of burnt ground and spices (that’s my taste, sorry coffee snobs), it grew on me an appreciation for longer coffees, drinks that would last more than 3 sips as customary in Italy.
Photo by Victor Freitas from Pexels
While I still hate Americano, which is no more than hot water with traces of a black concoction only vaguely resembling coffee in it, espresso slowly became too little, too short to fully appreciate a good blend of coffee. I wanted more. I leaned towards longer doses of coffee, the “lungo” or those fund at Starbucks or Costa Coffee.
Personally I consider their coffee sub-par, way too soft and sugary. I only drink their coffee with milk now. Even then, I’m more for their iced versions while for hot ones I stick with cappuccinos. Those fast food of coffee aren’t really great to be honest. Just average. And expensive. Absolutely not worth in the long run.
Moka is not the perfect method to make coffee
Now we are entering blasphemy territory for an italian. I have a Bialetti moka, which I like and still use it. But unless you prepare the coffee with great care, you choose the beans that are apt for the use with mokas, put the right amount of water and heat it in a slow but steady way, the espresso coming out of my Bialetti was never truly great. Good, not great. I liked I could have a longer cup of coffee with it by just using more water but it is not just the same thing as an espresso done at a bar, with tens of bar of pressures. No foam altogether.
So, an unsatisfactory experience, overall.
Cold brews are the best
Last summer I attempted something that has probably earned me eternal hell for an italian: I made cold brew. I disrespected the sacred Verb that wants an italian only liking hot coffee. Somewhere in my veins it runs hipster blood.
Yet, what the hell (pun intended), I loved it. I truly did. It opened me to a whole bunch of different flavours to saviour in coffee that hot brewed coffee simply can’t match. Chemistry bitches.
I chose a simple 4 to 1 ratio, 4 parts of water for 1 of coffee, left it overnight and bottled the morning after. It is simply amazing. It’s wholly different than a hot coffee, kind of a different beverage altogether, but it rules for summer, it truly is unmatched in the amount of flavours you can catch by drinking it.
I used to believe that cold brews were weak, and if you only drink those coming from Starbucks and similiar, you’d be justified in thinking so. But with my ratio I got a godly strong coffee, so strong that I couldn’t drink it straight but always diluted it with ice or milk. A whole bottle lasted me 2 months.
Only issue: while I see myself drinking hot coffee during summer, a cold brew during winter is nothing that I ever wish to drink. It doesn’t match the season, so to say. It can do for half of the year but then what should I drink in the colder months?
Here comes the Nespresso coffee machine
Therefore, after much pondering and despairing in finding a method that would allow me to have a trustwhorty level of “quality coffee” each time, without having to fiddle with techniques and formulas, I got the decision to buy a Nespresso coffee machine. A cheap one, I thought at first.
Then I went to buy one with an included milk frother. Can’t give up a good cappuccino, sorry. Therefore, the Krups Nespresso coffee machine with a black Aeroccino 3 was my choice, a costly one as it amounted to above 200€, when I had planned to spend at most 100. Yet is a truly sleek-looking Nespresso coffee machine: dark, but not totally black, spanning in horizontal as to look like a classic espresso machine of a bar, with touch buttons and with curved lines. A beautiful machine, other than working very well.
It has bluetooth and with the official Nespresso app you can schedule your coffee, set up the machine and brew on the spot. I don’t find the bluetooth feature compelling, but to each his own.
The single thing I love the most about my Nespresso coffee machine is that is reliable: you can be guaranteed that you’ll have exactly the coffee brew you want according to the type of capsule you choose. No room for exception, if you make a ristretto with an Arpeggio capsule, it will taste 100% like each time you use the same recipe and capsule. This is a whole other level compared to mokas or aeropress and other more manual tools that coffee-lovers rave about. I’m sure you can have a better coffee if you properly learn and practice to use those but this is about consistency and saving time. A Nespresso coffee machine will give you exactly the coffee you want, when you want, and with minimal maintenance (no need to clean anything but your cup of coffee afterwards).
Photo by Wany Bae from Flickr
Did I also say that you have a whole array of flavours? From single origin coffees (India, Brazil, Colombia, Ethiopia), to flavoured ones (Caramel, Chocolate and Vanilla), Nespresso coffee has a lot of choices and there’s surely you’ll love. If you don’t, you must not like coffee at all, I’m afraid.
So, am I happy with it? Yes. Would I buy it again? Heck, yes. Will I use another method in the future to brew my coffee? Probably, but not very soon. This Nespresso coffee machine does everything I need at the moment and saves me a lot of time that I don’t find any reason to switch to anything else. Not soon for sure.
I would have never thought I could appreciate coffee coming in capsules as an italian. Only with machines that had a lot more pressure, bar-levels pressures at least. Yet I was proven wrong. And I’m enjoying my wrongness 🙂