When I still had an actual "job" I could just walk outside and pick up a perfect coffee from Dean & Deluca, Olive's, Cafe del Caribe, Le Pain Quotidien or Balthazar. It was a little bit of caffeinated heaven. And then, sadly and so unfairly, when I really needed caffeine the most, when sleep became something that other people did, something that I vaguely remembered, quick and easy access to really good coffee was taken from me and I was left with something just north of suck. Somehow, I have managed to survive in that sad, uncivilized state of being for more than eight years. Now, thankfully, beautiful, frothy, hot caffeine is back in my life- espressos, cappuccinos, lovely lattes and the like- right in my own kitchen. And life is beginning to feel more civilized by the moment.
I have just been given a Nespresso CitiZ + Milk by my parents, who undoubtedly pity my sad, nearly sleep-free existence and this little machine totally, absolutely rocks. Having 4 children who are all still pretty young has meant that making decent coffee for myself has just been too hard. No time to make it or drink it, too hard when holding a baby or running after toddlers. If anyone in this world needs access to good, strong, fast coffee, it's a parent of small children and when you need it most it's often just out of reach. Having a Nespresso in the house puts it easily within your grasp. I've tried several other similar sounding options, but none have offered the ease of use and a quality cup of coffee- in this case espresso- in one package. Oh, it's not just coffee. It even gives you perfectly heated and frothed milk just as easily. Super cool.
There are many Nespresso models with varying levels of automation and price points, with milk or without. (You can also purchase the lovely milk frother on its own If you choose a model without built in or attached milk or if you really just need a super, fantastic frother.) I have the CitiZ with attached Aerocchino or CitiZ + Milk. The process is simple- fill the water tank at the start of the day, drop in a capsule and press the button when you want a cup- small or large- and out comes a perfect espresso. Fill the areochino with milk and a quick tap for hot (long tap for cold) frothed milk. Add milk to cup, spoon in the foam. That's it. The capsules, available in 16 varieties, can be purchased and recycled through Nespresso and select retailers and they even cost less than those other plastic thingies I had been using that never once gave me a good cup of coffee. You can also purchase refillable, reusable capsules. I'm still working on my technique with mine, but I'm getting very close to packing one that produces an excellent cup of Illy Espresso. And it even looks good sitting out on the counter which is always nice. Home or office, single coffee lover or whacked out parent of a newborn, this is the perfect pick or super fabulous gift. Visit the Nespresso site for more info.