Nespresso CitiZ, You Complete Me
When our French press broke in November, we started considering a fancier machine. Daniel suggested something from Nespresso. I shot down his idea on the spot. I'm not even a big coffee drinker. I mostly drink decaf and have no problem downing a latte after dinner. Still, I can be picky about these things. Nespresso just seemed so mass produced. I didn't want to buy coffee in capsules for a machine called the CitiZ. That uppercase Z totally weirded me out. It still does. I cringed as I capitalized it for the title of this post. Oh, and George Clooney is Nespresso's brand ambassador. He's very handsome and all, but come on.
Then we spent Thanksgiving with our friends Doug and Karlyn. After dinner, Doug made each of us a homemade cappuccino using his cool Illy machine. They were wonderful, but he spent about a half hour on them. After cooking for us all day. It looked like a lot of work. Daniel just needs a quick jolt of caffeine in the morning and I'm happy with a cold glass of milk.
When December rolled around, Daniel hadn't replaced his French press and I was trying to think of a good Christmas present for him. Secretly, I started reading Nespresso reviews online. Almost everyone, people who seem to know a lot about coffee than I do, gave it rave reviews. One former barista turned food blogger even proclaimed: "The Nespresso CitiZ produces a perfect cup of espresso, one that rivals the depth and quality of the product that is served in European restaurants." Say whaaaaaat?
He went on to explain that the key to perfect espresso is the amount of pressure produced in the process. Most machines produce 15 bars while the pump-driven Nespresso produces 19. The result? A perfect cup of espresso with a golden layer of crema. Educating myself about the machine helped me swallow my pride. Quickly.
I decided to buy the Nespresso CitiZ D120. When Daniel tried to slip a small stovetop espresso maker into our cart at Ikea a few days later, I convinced him to put it back on the shelf. Dreaming about cappuccinos on Christmas morning, I forced him to open his present on Christmas Eve. We've been treating ourselves to fancy-pants drinks ever since.
Our mornings start early and are almost always a three-ring circus. Making a latte or cappuccino with the touch of two buttons is soothing. The milk frother is my favorite part of all and it's magical. It comes with two attachments: a whisk that makes a thick, puffy froth that needs to be scooped out with a spoon; the other one produces warm, foamy milk that's perfect for lattes or a cup of tea. Even Nico's a fan. I made this syrup the other day now that he regularly requests hot chocolate. There's also a cold froth option that will get a lot of use this summer, I'm sure.
I still don't know much about espresso, but during a rare moment of silence yesterday while Nico and Leo were napping, I started flipping through a manual called The Art of Espresso that came with our machine. I have a long way to go, but slowly, I'm learning a thing or two.