Rediscovering the Joy of Coffee

A few months ago, the wife and I purchased a Nespresso Vertuo coffee machine and a variety of coffee capsules to go with it. (Nespresso is a Nestle-owned company that creates and sells a variety of coffee and espresso ‘capsules’ and the coffee machines that extract the coffee/espresso from these capsules). We spent a good amount of money on that purchase too – something we later calculated would have covered 2-3 months of our Starbucks expenses.

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But within a couple of days of receiving our Nespresso machine, I had buyer’s remorse. Was this even necessary? Why did I get this when I was already happy with the awesome coffee beans my mom would ship to me from Bangalore? How much will this increase my ‘per cup’ cost at home? What else could I have used my money on? Will I even like any of these coffees? Did I really need all these different varieties of coffees when I was happy drinking just one kind?

I seriously considered returning the product but decided to give it a shot with an open mind. 2 weeks later, I had a very different outlook about it. The first and foremost was that these coffees tasted wonderful. I tried about a dozen different types of coffee and espresso, and without exception, their quality exceeded my expectations. It had been a long time since I had simply just enjoyed a coffee for its taste.

For someone who grew up on the best filter coffee Karnataka could offer, I found myself being delighted in the coffee coming out of a packaged capsule! I will freely admit I have always been a bit uptight in my opinion of coffee that is not of the ‘filter coffee’ variety (even leading to arguments with the wife who grew up in Ahmedabad with Nescafe as the idea of coffee. It’s a mortal sin, I know!). I have tried many different varieties of ‘regular’ coffee from the stores – everything from “Freeze-dried Taster’s Choice” to the “Serious Gourmet shit”! But I had never found as much raw delight with any of them as I did with these Nespresso capsules.

The other major value addition was the convenience. Instead of going through all the different steps of making filter coffee – or ever brewing the regular coffee – at home, now all I had to do was pop a capsule in the machine, press a button and the coffee is in the cup in less than a minute. The accompanying Aeroccino machine steams/froths milk (I use oat milk) in the same time. I add that to the coffee as needed and I have my morning concoction ready to go without much effort at all. This might sound like a legit first world problem (it probably is) but there is significant value addition in it for me.

The other value additions to me are the coffee and espresso varieties, and the ability to only brew one serving at a time. I have enjoyed exploring and making different recipes of coffee while not having to brew an entire pot every time. This latter aspect was of particular appeal to me as I didn’t have to worry about wasting a lot of coffee every time. I was also very impressed with Nespresso’s commitment to recycling their capsules. I ship them the used capsules in a pre-paid container where they recycle the capsule and compost the coffee – all free of cost.

Simply put, Nespresso has brought back the joy of drinking great coffee – how it tastes, how it makes me feel, and how it has become a positive part of my morning routine. Ultimately, I realized that while we are certainly paying a lot more for our morning cups of coffee, it is for a better experience that we are both enjoying significantly – excellent taste, convenience, and variety. I now look at it as an investment that is going to pay great dividends for a long time to come.

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PS: My personal favorites are Odacio, Aflorazio, Cookies and Caramel, Voltesso, Mexico & Scuro.

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