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Monday, November 26, 2012

review: the perfect guy gift: the nespresso U

My husband reminds me of George Clooney. He does. I realized this the last time I was in the South of France and I saw the bus stop ads featuring George Clooney in the Nespresso ads*. I remember looking at George thinking "Hmmm, L. reminds me of George and he likes espresso too."

And this is what I thought of this weekend as I stood in the middle of the mall feeling like Robert Frost (You know, the poet, "Two roads diverged in a yellow wood. . .") I was at the mall buying a Christmas gift for my husband. This present had to say "Your wife is so awesome that she knew exactly the right gift that would make you think 'This is just what I wanted! How did you know?'" That kind of Christmas gift. No pressure. 

So, I asked him, of course. "Honey, what do you want for Christmas?"

"You know, I don't need anything," he answered. 

"I know but if I was going shopping for you and you wanted something, what would you want?"

He thought for a moment. "Um, shaving cream?"

"Babe," I said. "I'm not buying your Christmas gift at Safeway."

"No, no, the stuff you got me from Nordstrom, the stuff that smells like lemons." 

"OK, done. What else?" I asked. 

"I'm good, Babe. Love you." And that was that. Shaving cream. For Christmas. Which is why I stood flummoxed by the Crabtree & Evelyn. I was hot. The place was crowded and then it happened. I came up with THE present. 

Here's how the thought process went. 

I'm feeling claustrophobic and hot. ----->Where do I wish I was instead of this mall? -----> Oh, I love sunny Cannes.  -----> Every time I left for a screening I passed by that bus stop with the George Clooney ads for Nespresso ------> I like George Clooney ------> I love my husband.  -----> George loves espresso. -----> L. loves espresso. ----> !Buy L. a new espresso machine and make him happy every morning! ----> Done!

And so, I went to Sur la Table to find L. the perfect espresso machine. We have a beverage bar in our kitchen and while I like my Keurig, L. is a purist. He drinks an espresso straight up from of his favorite glass espresso cups from Nespresso. We've had a Nespresso for YEARS and it has always served up the perfect, hot espresso and with the attached frother, a picture perfect cappuccino. The model we previously had though, was enormous. I looked at the range of new Nespresso machines and chose the Nespresso U, a sleek, compact unit that still had 19 bars of pressure which made the perfect shot every time. 

Some cool things about this machine were: 
  • The Nespresso U has a 24 ounce water tank that can be positioned on either side of the tank or straight behind the machine which will fit any kitchen set-up.
  • There are three settings which can be set for ristretto, espresso and lungo (extra small, traditional or long shots). See the different flavors and variations of capsules here
  • With one touch, you pop in a capsule and the Nespresso U brews the espresso and disposes of the capsule into a container which can hold up to 10 used capsules. 

It had everything I wanted so I bought the Nespresso U and I couldn't wait. I had to give it to L. as soon as I got home.  He was a little surprised that I said "Happy Saturday!!" and handed him the bag from Sur la Table but he's also a techy guy. He immediately unboxed the machine and within three minutes the machine was on our beverage counter ready to make the perfect espresso. And it was perfect. Seeing L. close his eyes as he took that first sip, made me so happy as a wife, as corny as that sounds.  Perfect gift. Yes. I think George would approve. 

*The Nespresso ads featuring George Clooney ran in Europe. They did not (unfortunately) run in the United States.

  • Making espresso sounds complicated, doesn't it? I think that's because we watch the baristas tamper the espresso grounds. With the Nespresso machine, there are no espresso grounds. Everything is self contained in the capsules (which are recyclable when you bring them back to the store.)
  • Making your own coffee beverage in the morning is economical. You'll spend no more than $1 making a perfect cup each morning. 
  • Nespresso capsules can be purchased in Nespresso stores or online. We order our Nespresso in bulk, usually 10 sleeves at a time including decaffeinated. Each holiday Nespresso features flavored capsules. This season is Coconut, Macadamia Nut and Hazelnut. I went a little crazy buying the Coconut.

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