November 7, 2008
The Aeroccino Plus is a larger version of the Aeroccino that also allows you to override the heating function if you wish to froth milk without heating. The cost for the Aeroccino Plus is $129 versus $99 on the smaller Aeroccino (read our review of the earlier Aeroccino here). The reason any single serve coffee drinker would want to get an Aeroccino is the need for frothed milk for those latte and capuccino drinks you might want to make at home to save a few dollars. We used the Aeroccino Plus in this review with the new Essenza Touch and our Nespresso Essenza C100T.
The Aeroccino won't make the same frothed milk as a high end espresso machine, but it will make a very thick-rich frothed cup of hot or cold milk. The Aeroccino Plus is also larger than the earlier version, and this allows you to make enough milk for 2+ drinks depending on what your making.
How does it work? To produce warm frothed milk, heating the milk to temperatures between 140-149°F/60-65°C, quickly press the button once. To override the heating function, press the button for two full seconds.
Continue reading: "Review: Aeroccino Plus Automatic Home Milk Frother from Nespresso"
October 30, 2008
S.H. continues his quest to find the perfect K Cup. Will he enjoy the pumpkin spice K Cups from Timothy's World Coffee?
With the opening of their first store in 1975, Timothy's World Coffee set out to become one of Canada's premier coffee houses. The company operates over 100 coffee/bakery restaurants across Canada under 3 distinct brands: Timothy's World Coffee, Mmmarvellous Mmmuffins & Michel's Baguette. In addition, the company operates a 35000 sq. ft. coffee roasting facility in the Toronto region and a bakery commissary; these guarantee the superior quality and freshness of all the coffee and bakery products served both in their retail stores and by co-branded partners.
Timothy's source pure origin coffee from countries around the world that grow specialty grade Arabica beans and only the top 5% of any harvest will meet their strict standards for quality. Over the years, the company has developed over 35 blends, various flavored coffees, teas and decaffeinated coffees. To ensure freshness, all coffee beans are brewed or sold in their retail locations within 20 days of roasting. They also service & supply offices, hotels, theatres and hospitals.
With Halloween just around the corner, I decided to review Timothy's Perfectly Pumpkin limited-edition K-Cups. These K-Cups will only be available during the Fall season, so now's the time to grab some if you want to try them out. When brewing, familiar scents of pumpkin pie start to emerge… all-spice, nutmeg & hints of pumpkin are all present. The body is medium with a usual brown/amber color.
Continue reading: "Review: Timothy's Perfectly Pumpkin K-Cups for Keurig"
October 17, 2008
There's a new single serve coffee coffee and hot beverage system in town - the Krups Nescafe Dolce Gusto. This amazing machine not only makes a perfect cup of single serve coffee, it can also make lattes, cappuccinos, shots of espresso, chococinos (hot chocolate), and even iced cappuccinos. And not only does it make an amazing range of drinks, this is one of the first single serve coffee makers to have a "round water reservoir", and to also look truly different than any other single serve coffee maker we've seen. The unique styling puts it on a path of it's own, and it's no wonder the design is so different.
Nescafe has teamed up with Krups and Nespresso to make this machine. You can see touches of Nespresso innovation, along with truly wonderful design choices from Krups. We also had the opportunity to test both the European and the recently launched US Krups Nescafe Dolce Gusto that is now in stores in the US. The differences in the two machines show a revolution in thought on how to make the Krups Nescafe Dolce Gusto a nearly perfect single serve coffee maker, from an already successful machine designed for Europe.
Continue reading: "Review: Krups Nescafe Dolce Gusto Single Serve Coffee Maker"
October 15, 2008
Our K Cup correspondent S.H. of the wild white north has managed to get his hands on Van Houtte's Apple Crumble K Cups. Does he enjoy them? Do they have the taste of apple with all the crumble?
Headquartered in Montreal, Canada, Van Houtte have been pioneers in European-style coffee since 1919. Today, they're involved in almost every aspect of the coffee industry. They select and buy their own beans, roast and package their coffees, manufacture state-of-the-art single cup vending machines and market a wide range of unique products to retail, office, café and online customers. They even operate the largest coffee services network in North America serving more than 71000 workplaces in most major cities.
When brewing these Apple Crumble K-Cups, you're greeted with the warm aroma of cinnamon & apples plus very subtle undertones of dark chocolate. The body is medium, with a somewhat dark color usually seen in most flavored coffees but if held in front of a light source, hints of crimson red shine through. At first I thought this was the natural color but later learned some K-Cup manufacturers color their coffees to match the flavors (something I hadn't been used to with Tassimo T-Discs).
Continue reading: "Review: Van Houtte Apple Crumble K-Cups for Keurig"
September 25, 2008
We've been using the Nespresso Essenza Touch in black and grey for over two weeks now, and find the texture and finish of this Nespresso to be very special. The Nespresso Essenza Touch is basically a Nespresso C100T (you can read our review of the C100T here), but it has a super smooth coating. This may be the first single serve coffee maker we've every used, where sliding your hand over it seems the thing to do each morning we make a cup of single serve coffee.
So, the big difference really is the coating. The Nespresso Touch features are the same as the C100T (which is an updated C90 - you can read our review of the C90 here).
Overall features are:
- High-pressure pump (19 bars)
- Thermoblock heating element
- Programmable and automatic control of the amount of coffee in the cup
- Functional handle allows for easy coffee preparation
- Automatic ejection of used capsules on lifting the handle
- Collection container for used capsules
- Removable water tank (1L capacity)
- Special Smooth Coating - feels like an iPod case or silicone
It's also good to note you can only use Nespresso coffee capsules with the Nespresso C100T Essenza. This is by design, and you'll also need to sign up for the Nespresso club to do you ordering or stop by a Nespresso boutique to get some new ones.
Continue reading: "Review: Nespresso Essenza Touch Single Serve Coffee and Espresso Maker"
September 8, 2008
The Tassimo Hot beverage system has been out in the US for the past two years, and when it launched was made by Braun. Last year Tassimo decided they needed to update the system, and went with a new partner - Bosch. Even though we really liked the older Braun model, we're glad Bosch got the job. The new Bosch Tassimo is completely redesigned, and the design changes are far reaching. Gone is the annoying loud brewing, the spill back of water after brewing a cup, and the unit heats and brews much faster.
The Bosch Tassimo Suprema Hot Beverage system.
Two models of the TASSIMO hot beverage system by Bosch are now available in the U.S. For this review, we tested the TAS4511UC model with an MSRP of $139.99. The TAS4511UC Bosch Tassimo is now available in select specialty and department stores as well as online. There is also a $99.99 Bosch Tassimo that will be available in select grocery and mass merchandise stores. The main difference in the two models is the water reservoir filtration, and aesthetics.
Update: Tassimo is now calling this system a "brewbot". What's a brew bot? The Brewbot (BROO·bot) is an advanced brewing machine programmed to make over seven different varieties of beverages. Brewbots can create coffees, lattes, cappuccinos, espressos, hot chocolates and coffee cremas all at the touch of a button. a.k.a. Roboticus Brewtus. The machines are the same as earlier Tassimo Bosch models above but being marketed as brewbots.
Continue reading: "Review: Bosch Tassimo Suprema Single Serve Coffee Brewer and Hot Beverage System"
August 4, 2008
The device is a rivet sleeve, rubber band, and
rivet to puncture the coffee pod.
It's been a long time in coming, but we finally got to spend the last week with a home made device called the "Podster". The Single Serve Coffee Forums have been abuzz with activity over the past year with tales of the Podster, and how it allows you to use coffee pods in your Keurig Elite B40 Brewer, Keurig B50, Keurig Special Edition Ultra Elite B60, Keurig B70 Brewer, Breville BKC600XL Gourmet Single Cup Brewer, and other Keurig K Cup brewers that use the My K- Cup reusable filter.
The Podster is design is very simple, and unlike the Perfect Pod Holster, the Podster requires the the My K- Cup reusable filter. There's also a fair amount of rigging to get everything set in place, but if you do the Podster works great.
Continue reading: "Review: Podster - Make Your Own K Cups with Coffee Pods"
July 23, 2008
Our Canadian correspondent S.H. has a another insightful review of Canadian T-Discs for Tassimo...
Nabob uses a combination of their espresso T-Disc (which I recently reviewed) and the usual shelf-stable latte milk creamer T-Disc which is common among most latte varieties such as Maxwell House Latte & Gevalia Latte.
You first make a shot of espresso...
The latte milk has a somewhat buttery taste and some may even find it tastes like 2% evaporated milk. Some people hate the taste and claim it's "too chemical" while others enjoy it so much they purchase the discs as stand-alones and use them with other coffee T-Discs or by themselves as a form of warm milk. Personally, I don't dislike the taste but I wish Kraft could improve it somehow. I have yet to sample the European creamer discs which come with the Jacobs or Kenco brands so I'm not sure if those would taste any better or worse.
Continue reading: "Review: Nabob Latte T-Discs for Tassimo"
June 30, 2008
Our Canadian correspondent S.H. has a another insightful review of Canadian T-Discs for Tassimo...
Nabob has 3 different espresso-based T-Disc flavors on the Canadian market... Espresso, Latte & Cappuccino. The 2 latter varieties both use the same espresso disc I'm reviewing here today with the only difference being the milk discs they include in their packaging. I'll have a review of the Nabob Latte T-Disc soon, but for now I wanted to start off with the most basic of the 3 selections.
One thing which seems to be consistent with Nabob's coffee has been to "expect the unexpected" (maybe they should use that as their new slogan?). Their Café Crema T-Disc surprised me with its mellow taste and bittersweet finish, so much so that I thought it compared well with their 100% Columbian in these regards. I figured to expect the same from their Espresso but once again, I had a unique experience awaiting me.
Continue reading: "Review: Nabob Espresso T-Discs for Tassimo"
June 26, 2008
The Keurig Mini B30 will come in white, black, and red.
Keurig recently introduced the Keurig B130 commercial hotel and office coffee brewer, and we were disappointed it would not be available for consumers to purchase. We are disappointed no longer, as Keurig has revealed the Keurig Mini B30 designed for home and commercial use. The Keurig Mini B30 is very much like the Keurig B130, but it comes in red, black, and white colored casings, and also is My K Cup compatible.
We received a red Keurig Mini B30 - can you say hot!
Besides having the smallest footprint of all the Keurig brewers, the Keurig Mini B30 single serve coffee maker is also very quiet. And yes - it's compatible with all K Cup coffees, teas, and other hot beverages including hot cocoa. So are there any issues? Is this brewer priced at $79 for everyone, or should one purchase a larger Keurig brewer?
Continue reading: "Review: Keurig Mini B30 K-Cup Single Serve Coffee Maker"