Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Caffeine fix

I've never had a coffee maker in all my life. This one showed up as an awesome V-day gift from June. It's a Krups-Nescafe Dolce Gusto, reasonably priced and available from some of the more upmarket supermarkets in the neighbourhood. The unit comes in brighter colours than what you see here, but June chose a sober titanium to give the coffee dispensed some dignity.

What makes this an easy impulse buy is how simple it is to operate. There's a wide range of different coffee blends to choose from, as you can see from the sample box (above). The correct proportions for each blend are already measured out in those handy capsules which you stick into the machine. In seconds either a steaming or chilled(!) stream of java comes out to fill a mugful of perky goodness.

Of course, there is still a slight learning curve to deal with. This here is my maiden cuppa what's supposed to be cappuccino. It's practically turned out pure espresso O_o In order to make the proper blend, you have to estimate how much coffee to fill your mug and stop the machine right there. Switch the coffee capsule for a milk capsule then restart the machine to fill up the rest of the mug. Different blends require you to watch your mug carefully in order to stop-reload-restart at optimum levels as prescribed by the handy proportions guide printed on every box of capsule refills. 

Oh, yes, refill boxes come from the supermarkets too. At my rate of caffeine consumption, I should get through maybe a box a week. Some cynics are going to scoff at how they're ripping us off having to buy refills, but really each mug of coffee costs about as much as a kopitiam kopi. Not too bad for a machine-brew.

Minor inconveniences are the quick rinsing of the nozzle with every capsule change, and a little wiping down of dispensing splash; but nothing to get excited about. Also, it'll take a while for the eyes to see mugs in fractions, but it should come with practice.

Now I shall reinstate a nighttime ritual I thought I had lost forever: a coffee before bedtime. Mmm...

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