If you are anything like me, you are of the opinion that coffee is rocket fuel for humans. The aroma of roasted beans is surely one of life’s greatest olfactory pleasures. And the instant wake-up one feels after chugging down that first cup makes even the worst of days seem a little brighter. But here’s the problem. Excess caffeine, coupled with empty calories from sugar and milk, is not the best way to stay healthy. Like a number of colleagues, friends and family members I have significantly cut back on the amount of coffee I drink.
These days it’s a case of quality over quantity. A while back my girlfriend and I decided that if we are only going to drink one or two cups a day, those cups should be worthy of praise. We decided that a coffee machine was the way forward. Currently, coffee lovers have a fair amount of choice when it comes to machines.
One the first range of machines we looked at (and the brand we eventually bought) was Nespresso. Using the Nespresso is simple. You load a pod into a machine and push a button. That’s about as tricky as it gets. What we liked most about our machine (the Essenza) is that it requires no cleaning or maintenance. Emptying the pod tray is all you’ll ever need to do. There are also a number of pod types to choose from. Whether you enjoy strong coffee, decaffeinated or creamy cappuccinos you should find a pod that pleases. The downside is that pods are expensive. And finding retailers is not always easy.
We tend to buy in bulk as it is simply not possible to quickly head to a local supermarket to find pods. We also bought a milk frother that worked for about a month. Despite this, if you need a machine that produces a variety of restaurant quality flavours you can’t go wrong with Nespresso. I would, however, only use the machines ment for home use for the home. I have found that over-zealous colleagues forget to top up the water tank or insert pods incorrectly, leading to break-downs. And with no coffee and clods for colleagues, life becomes unpleasant.
Lavazza has a range of machines that operate on the same concept. The end user merely switches capsules and enjoys a range of aromatic coffees with minimal fuss. The machines are stylish, functional and have a number of optional accessories that can be bought. Lazazza (as well as Nespresso) have a number of home machines but also manufacture larger machines for office use. They also stock accessories and consumables aimed at the enterprise. I should imagine that this would be quite expensive so you would have to really like your employees.
Another option, and possibly better suited to both home and office use, is get a drip coffee maker. There are a number of brands on the market but a decent bet is DeLonghi. Filter coffee is far more inexpensive than pod or capsule systems and if you are entertaining it takes a only few minutes to make a cup of the best for your guests (once the water has been through the filter). There are also a number of flavour variants for filter coffees. I’m not entirely convinced that you get the same aroma and flavour from these system though.
Alternatively, if you have a bit of time to spare, enjoy feeling like you are creating something special and want really good coffee, get your hands on a bean grinder and percolator. You can blend your own beans and attempt to make a unique cup of coffee. If you want to make the process more macho you can always crush the beans with your bare hands.
But while you do that I’ll sip on a Nespresso coffee.