March 22, 2010

Nespresso Tanzaru - Limited Edition Espresso Capsules - 2010

Nespresso_Capsules_tanzaru.jpg OK - so it looks like the capsules are going to be green this year after Nespresso's Facebook teaser. Tanzaru capsules will be available for us this spring as the Nespresso Limited Edition. It seems that the Limited Edition will be an Arabica blend of coffee from Peru and Tanzania and will have a more mild body with stronger top notes of fruity citrus, cherries and fresh grass.

The Limited Edition espresso cups are designed by Christian Ghion and feature butterflies dancing around plants. I like the new rounded handles that seem to match the rings on the saucer. This is in contrast to the triangular shaped handles on cups in the past.

With warmer weather in the air, I am ready for a bit of variety. Looking forward to it.

Update: Check out some early impressions and tasting notes on the Nespresso Tanzaru Espresso Capsules

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March 16, 2010

Nespresso Limited Edition 2010 - What Color Capsules?

NespressoCapsuleColors_Limited2010.jpgThe Limited Edition Nespresso capsules are in the works for 2010 and we are looking forward to whatever comes out this year. Always an interesting blend and a well orchestrated campaign to market them.

In recent years special limited editions have focused on small batch or specialty coffees from sub-regions in growing areas.

Nespresso just posted a poll on Facebook asking Fans what color capsule they will represent the the new blend. The Orange, Lime Green or Purple capsules are not striped and in a very unscientific look - I think the green is winning. Besides, Purple was done for Goroka, and Orange was done for Oa; I think it's time for green.

What do you think and what do you want to see this Spring for the color of the limited edition capsules?

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February 23, 2010

Nespresso Le Cube C185 Espresso Machine Now $100 Off


Normally priced much higher at $299, the Nespresso Le Cube is now only $199 (you can read our full review here). The Le Cube measures 9 by 8-8/9 by 9-inch, and makes an exceptional cup of espresso or lungo coffee. You can even auto-program the amount of espresso you want in each cup. The Nespresso Le Cube works with coffee-filled capsules from Nespresso, and there is 12+ flavors available, along with seasonal flavors too. We imagine they've lowered the price to make way for the new Citiz line of Nespresso coffee makers, but we really love the Le Cube and think at $199 you can't go wrong.

At Nespresso Le Cube C185 Espresso Machine

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January 25, 2010

Nespresso Easy to Use Espresso Machines - about $100


I really enjoy my espresso, and love the push button ease of the Nespresso system; pop in a capsule, out comes great espresso every time. My Back-up Essenza is out on loan right now to a friend who is playing with it for a while to decide if they are going to buy one. I think that they will given that after a few days their reaction was that the "Thing is amazing."

Well, cost can be an issue, and I have pointed out to a few readers that Nespresso runs an eBay store where they sell certified refurbs on a few of the popular machines, including Le Cube, the Essenza and D290's.

So, this Essenza is priced at $66 right now, ending sometime tomorrow, while a few others that I was watching ended up selling for right around $100 - a Le Cube and another Essenza.

Nespresso is trying a few things differently after the holidays on the eBay site, as they experiment with some Buy it Now or Best Offer type sale tools; well beyond the typical auction style.

Nespresso Certified Auctions has sold over 3,000 items with a 99+% satisfaction rate, according to their eBay rating. You might want to check them out for a good bargain on a nearly new Nespresso Machine.

More at Nespresso on eBay

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January 24, 2010

Nespresso Variations 2009 Espresso Capsules Review


UPDATE: 2012 Variations are out; See My Nespresso Variations 2012 Full Review
Every year, Nespresso comes out with a new set of Variations, flavored espresso capsules, that while not for everyone, they are an appealing and fun way to play with your Nespresso machine and enjoy espresso with others who maybe aren't as into espresso as you are. This year, three Nespresso Variations showed up in early December at the Nespresso Club store and at their boutiques across the country.

Chestnut Cream - "Reminiscent of very sweet and concentrated jarred chestnut cream, recalls the traditional "marron glace," or "candied chestnut." - says Nespresso. For me, I tried it as a straight espresso, and in a latte. The latte was a great way to enjoy the subtle flavors that do admittedly get a bit muted, but complement the cream flavor well. Americans might think of this a bit as a hazelnut cream type flavor, but it is a bit different. Straight, the flavor is intense, and sits on a nice medium dark roast that offers a bit of acidity for the flavors to play off of. I preferred it with a bit of sugar. I do have to call out that the aroma coming off this when it brewed was intoxicating.

Apricot - "Reminiscent of a very fresh, ripe and juicy apricot; unlike the more intense dried apricot flavor." - Says Nespresso. They should have added "It will blow you away with the authentic flavor". This was my least favorite in concept and most favored in tasting. Total surprise. Again, I tried it straight and in a latte, and favored this one as a straight espresso with a bit of sugar. Again the sugar just lengthens the flavor profile enough to enjoy it. No need for over sweetness here, just a touch to bring it out. The flavor truly is like a fresh apricot, which is a great treat. The aroma is not as overwhelming when it brews as the Chestnut Cream, but the nose when drinking is just great. Don't let it sit around long, the aroma is great sooner than later.

Pain d'Espice/Gingerbread - "Reminiscent of crystalized orange zest or peel, honey, cinnamon and ginger in a brown sugar base." - Says Nespresso. I think that it comes across with a strong ginger flavor, reminiscent of my big surprising favorite from last year the Crystalized Ginger Variation. Again, great with a hint of sugar to lengthen the profile, and has some nice subtle spice flavors. It is not over the top gingerbread flavor that you may be use to from store bought gingerbread men. I enjoyed it quite a bit straight, but the flavor also blended nicely with milk based drinks too.
With each of these capsules rated a "6" on a scale of 1 to 10 for strength, Nespresso is appealing to most espresso fans. The base coffee is a clean blend with some acidity to make the flavors pop a bit without being overly sour. At, they refer to the base blend of the Chestnut and Apricot as the Livanto blend and roast which happens to be one of may favorites along with the Rosabaya Single Origin. So not a surprise that I like the Variations flavors on top of one of my favorite blends.

I liked the brews overall, with the Apricot being my hands down favorite for surprising quality and experience of a flavored brew. not for everyone though, but well worth a try in everybody's next order. I liked the Gingerbread flavor for its wide appeal - a lot of visitors tried these this past month or so and liked this one the best. I happen to think the trio is well worth the try in your next order if you are open to the flavored coffee idea. I am usually not when I go to a coffee shop, but still look forward to these every December.

A quick check today has all of these capsules in stock but sadly not the matching espresso cups. A quick thanks to Nespresso for sending a set of these for this review, which only added to the stockpile that I bought on my own.


Brewing into a 12-ounce Double Wall Bodum Pavina Glass

Above you can see a drink being made that was a hit this year with friends and family. I was brewing with my Nespresso Citiz into a Bodum Pavina 12-ounce Double-Wall Glass that already had frothed milk in it from a Nespresso Aeroccino - less than a minute from milk to frothed heated milk. I tended to mix some sugar into the heated milk before brewing the Nespresso capsule. I set the glass on the bottom tray with the mid-level shot glass stand folded up (behind the glass against the Citiz). The espresso brews down the side of the glass to make the layered effect.   

More at Nespresso's Website
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December 6, 2009

Nespresso Variations Espresso Capsules - 2009


Each winter Nespresso launches a set of Nespresso variations that have are built around unique flavor profiles. Three new varieties, "Gingerbread," "Apricot" and "Chestnut Cream," launch this year and are available at Nespresso's site. I still have some of last year's Ginger flavored Espresso capsules in the 'frige for safe keeping - they were definitely my stunning favorite.

  • CHESTNUT CREAM Reminiscent of very sweet and concentrated jarred chestnut cream, recalls the traditional "marron glace," or "candied chestnut."
  • APRICOT Reminiscent of a very fresh, ripe and juicy apricot; unlike the more intense dried apricot flavor.
  • GINGERBREAD Reminiscent of crystalized orange zest or peel, honey, cinnamon and ginger in a brown sugar base.

I already ordered mine this week, and I would suggest that you order yours quickly. These have a tendency to sell out and they are well worth the wintertime treat.

At Nespresso

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November 12, 2009

Nespresso Boutique Tasting Event - Grand Crus


Sorry if you missed it, but there was a tasting event in Boston at the Nespresso Boutique last night that explored the Grand Cru line of capsules with several corporate Nespresso representatives who walked a packed audience through the delicacies of the three grand cru espresso capsules and if you wanted the two Lungos in the line. Not only were there plenty of coffees to be had, but a nice complement of some amazing hor'derves and wine. Nespresso_Finezzo.jpg

After a short run through of a talk about the coffees selected and the various distinctive attributes of these coffees and their flavors that went into these blends, Karsten Ranitzsch, head of green coffee buying, led people through the tasting of each of the three espressos, Dulsao, Rosabaya and Indriya, noting the differences and pointing out their strengths. While most were sipping, Karsten brought out his cupping spoon to taste his; there certainly seemed to be interest in everyone in the audience using a silver cupping spoon to taste their coffee. While regular people may think it a luxury, it is clearly a tool of the trade and something that went home in its own protective cloth drawstring bag.

Most people went home with bags of nespresso capsules bought from the boutique's sales counter; if you haven't stopped by for a taste and a demo of the machines, you should. The espresso is free and they have lots of it.

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November 9, 2009

Nespresso - Fast Brews a New Store

Thumbnail image for nespresso_citiz.jpg

Newpresso has opened up a "Pop-up Boutique" for the holidays, apparently bullish on what could be the bounce-back holiday shopping season. They positioned their new boutique well in Bloomingdales on 59th St. in NYC with espresso demonstrations and the new Nespresso Citiz line - (See my Full Review). Not a bad little pick-me up for the busy shopper.

Press release below.....

Nespresso--the worldwide pioneer in premium portioned coffee--celebrates the opening of its first-ever Pop-Up Boutique at Bloomingdale's 59th Street, a holiday installation open now through the end of the year. The temporary retail location offers coffee lovers the opportunity to discover their ultimate coffee experience as they enjoy the ultimate shopping experience offered by the most famous store in the world.

"Our Boutique partnership with Bloomingdale's has been a very successful retail model, and we are excited to expand our partnership to this iconic location. As well, to share space on the newly renovated main floor which has just undergone a stunning transformation," said Frederic Levy, president of Nespresso North America. "As the perfect holiday gift for the coffee lover on your list, we look forward to fulfilling the needs of both new and current Nespresso customers."

"To offer our guests at Bloomingdale's 59th Street the opportunity to experience Nespresso coffee on our main floor during the holidays is a real treat," said Michael Gould, chairman and chief executive officer at Bloomingdale's. "Holiday shopping at Bloomingdale's will be a lot more fun and a bit warmer this year."

Sleek and stylish, the Pop-Up Boutique offers Bloomingdale's customers the opportunity to peruse Nespresso's extensive selection of espresso machines and sample Nespresso's Premium Blend Grand Cru coffees. Nespresso coffee specialists will staff the Pop-Up offering demonstrations of the single-serve coffee systems, including the new Nespresso CitiZ range.

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November 4, 2009

Favorite Espresso Cups - #3 - Nespresso


Nespresso has a simple design to their white espresso cups that mirrors their simple approach to making espresso. Put in a capsule, push a button and excellent espresso magically appears each and every time. Their designs are not simple to get such a simplified experience, and offer total eye candy in the dizzying array of beauty when they put out new machines - their most recent is the Nespresso Citiz.

For me, the Nespresso cups are a classic design with gradual sloping sides to cradle the top notch crema you get every time. The cool, contemporary spoons are a great way to finish the presentation. I use these when I entertain, and crank out a few espressos at a time after dinner.

At Nespresso

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October 19, 2009

Nespresso: Singatoba Special Edition Espresso Capsule Review


Singatoba is this season's Special Club Capsule from Nespresso, hailing from the island of Sumatra. The 100% Blue Batak Arabica beans are sourced from the northern part of the island and goes through a ferment and wash type process that has it acquiring both flavor complexity and its characteristic blue hue. Nespresso seems to have gone all out here and split roasted the coffee, light roasting some portion of the blend to keep the fruity and earthy notes, while dark roasting a portion of the batch to develop the body and the strength of the espresso.
NespressoSingatobaCapsules.jpgI bought some Singatoba as soon as it was available and then also received some from Nespresso along with the signature cups for this review. After drinking for the last couple of weeks, I have come to appreciate the complexity of the espresso both in simple form and in lattes also. Below you'll see the overall description from Nespresso, and they are right on with a lot of complexity and rich intensity. I saw earthy tones mixed with fruity and woody top notes in the aroma. The flavor is dark, but not burt or ashy, with a good lingering espresso base and simple but noticeable acidity. I like acidity, and count the Rosabaya as one of my favorites, where the strong acidity presents itself as an extreme brightness in the cup, dominating a lot of the show. The Singatoba, is not anywhere close to that level, but offers an acidity that keeps the flavors flowing and balanced, throughout the experience. I also drank the Singatoba in a latte several times and thought that the base notes stood up well to the milk. You lose some of the complexity, but it you want a versatile capsule, this can handle both duties.

I was brewing the Singatoba up in the Nespresso CitiZ brewer for this review, and into the Singatoba signature cups. The cups shown here were designed to reflect the coffee bean and a group of children offering protection as they encircle hand in hand. Using the classic Nespresso shape, the cups and saucers continue to be some of my favorites.

Overall, if you like darker espresso without going to the extreme, the Singatoba is a great choice. I thought that the flavor complexity was great, with aromas that I haven't seen in an espresso in a long time. I came to appreciate it most with a small amount of sugar that I thought filled out the flavor even more. These usually sell out fast, you can get them at the Nespresso Club.

At Nespresso Club

Below is Nespresso's description of this year's Special Club - Singatoba:  

Special Club 2009 - Singatoba

ORIGIN Made in Indonesia from 100% Blue Batak Arabica grown around Lake Toba in northern Sumatra, Singatoba is subject to a complex treatment process which gives it a unique aromatic bouquet.

FRUITY AND WOODY This Blue Batak Arabica from Sumatra is a full-bodied espresso revealing refreshing notes of blackcurrant buds and grapefruit along with sweet notes reminiscent of licorice sticks and conifers.

Espresso 40 ml Intensity 8
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