February 25, 2014

Nespresso VertuoLine Capsule Details


More has come out on the Nespresso VertuoLine capsules that are available to brew coffee and espressos. The Vertuo:one machines will be able to brew both an eight ounce (7.7 ounce actually) coffee as well as an espresso given the new capsule format and two sizes available.


The machines are intelligent, and read the little bar code on the rim of the capsule (see the black and silver dashes on the rim above), creating a brewing set-up that is just right for that capsule. I would imagine that it gives Nespresso the option for future expansion and fine tuning as they build out the line.

Let's take a look at what Nespresso has to say about the new VertuoLine Capsules. First the Coffee Capsules:

  • Stormio - An intense coffee, Stormio's myriad aromas stem from its highly roasted Nicaraguan and Guatemalan Arabica coffee beans the evolk spicy, woody and cereal notes. Adding milk softens the intensity of Stormio but distinct roasted notes remain. Intensity 8
  • Odacio -An audacious blend of fine Arabicas from Nicaragua and Ethiopia, Odacio is a full-bodied coffee with cereal notes accented by a slight East African fruitiness. Adding milk softens the flavor, bringing dairy, sweet notes. Intensity 7
  • Melozio - Fine quality Brazilian Bourbon and Central American Arabicas are lightly roasted to create a rounded coffee that is smooth and perfectly balanced. Adding milk opens up the softer, sweeter sides of the coffee, enhancing the biscuity notes.Intensity 6
  • Elvazio -A fragrant blend of fine Arabica coffee beans from South America, lightly roasted to release abundant flavors, in a Coffee full of light fruity notes. With milk, the fruitiness fades to reveal a much creamier brew, with cereal and caramel notes. Intensity 4
  • Hazelino -Hazelnut flavored A blend of slightly roasted Brazilian and Central American Arabicas infused with a hazelnut flavor which creates a smooth, balanced Coffee that is sweet to the taste with a distinct, nutty aroma. Adding milk gives a praline note to the original hazelnut flavor. Intensity 6
  • Vanizio - Vanilla Flavored The flavor of vanilla brings a velvety layer of taste to the roundness found in this smooth and balanced blend of Brazilian and Central American Arabica coffee beans. With milk, Vanizio becomes creamy and biscuity, for a gourmand break. Intensity 6
  • Decaffeinato - Created from Costa Rican and South American Arabicas, the Decaffeinato blend is deliciously rounded and smooth. This Coffee is rich in flavor, with generous malted and cereal notes. The addition of milk establishes a new balance of flavors, releasing notes reminiscent of fresh nuts. Intensity 6
  • Half Caff -SWEET AND VELVETY This perfect marriage of caffeinated and decaffeinated Arabicas, mainly from Brazil and Africa, displays a smooth texture and medium intensity, with delicate hints of biscuit. Maintaining its light, sweet character, milk opens up new dimensions of Half Caffeinato, as caramel and nutty notes are also brought into play.
How much will the VertuoLine coffee capsules cost? They aren't cheap; they run $0.95 per capsule, and are clad in the well known recyclable aluminum.
Espresso Line
The espresso line of VertuoLine capsules is a short one, but that isn't the emphasis here. Let's check out the capsules:
  • Diavolitto - HIGHLY INTENSE AND POWERFUL A high intensity Espresso for coffee aficionados. Energized by highly roasted Robusta and Brazilian Arabica coffee beans, with an aroma that hints at oak wood and leather, balance is achieved with a creamy texture. Intensity 11
  • Altissio - FULL-BODIED and CREAMY This highly roasted full-bodied Espresso is made with Arabicas from Costa Rica and South America. The hint of Robusta contrasts with smooth cereal notes. The addition of milk complements its natural full body. Intensity 9
  • Decaffeinato Intenso - DENSE AND HARMONIOUS The pleasure of an intense decaffeinated Espresso with body. Colombian and Brazilian coffees subtly blend with fine Asian Robusta to create harmony, releasing cocoa and fruity notes. Add milk for a sweet taste and creamy texture. Intensity 7
  • Voltesso - LIGHT AND SWEET Lightly roasted, Voltesso is a balanced, round coffee that reveals biscuity notes and pronounces a distinctly sweet aroma thanks to its South American Arabicas. For an even smoother result, blend Voltesso with milk for a delicious new take on this Espresso. Intensity 4

the espresso capsules for the Vertuo line will cost $0.75 each.

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February 19, 2014

Nespresso Debuts VertuoLine Coffee/Espresso Maker


Nespresso is trying to move into the American market with a strong offering for larger coffees. The Capsule-based systems to date have been great at making espresso drinks, but with the K-Cup craze, Americans continue to seek a coffee experience with larger cups.... ranging up to carafes.

Nespresso is trying to do something about it with their new brewer, calld VertuoLine, a brewer capable of making 8-ounce cups of coffee AND espresso drinks. notice int eh picture above, the capsules are not a normal Nespresso Espresso capsule.

The Nespresso VertuoLine brewer will retail for $299, and be sold through typical Nespresso outlets, including Macy's and William Sonoma.

I would expect that while this will get them moving in the right direction, they are very far behind in the market here in the US, and are probably missing the fact that many people are brewing larger cups of coffee (My K-Cup brewer can brew travel mugs; really diluted coffee though), so there is a consumer demand there. With grocery stores being dominated by K-cups these days, the distribution channel will also be a challenge. Will Nespresso expand their sales? Sure. Will Green Mountain feel it? Maybe not so much.

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Want to Grab a Cold Pint..... of Coffee?

It should have happened sooner; we have coffee stout, why not coffee poured out of a tap that is fed by the same gas that the best Stouts use, nitrogen?

Cuvee coffee has done it, and they call it Black and Blue, a cold coffee brew that is legged, and served out of a beer tap. Slightly carbonated, using nitrogen as the gas, allows Cuvee to give you the rich experience of a falling crema that so many stout beer drinkers fall in love with.

Check out their video to see what I mean.

More on Cuveee's Black and Blue, and where to experience it (in TX) at the Cuvee Coffee website

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February 17, 2014

HiLine Coffee - Nespresso Compatible Capsules


As the world continues to march down the pathway of single serve coffee as a go-to daily indulgence, the choices continue to expand as more and more roasters get into the format. I welcome the move, as I continue to try new coffee whenever I can get my hands on them, in addition to trying out specialty coffee and espresso from smaller roasters all over the country.

Today, I wanted to hi-light a roaster out of NYC, HiLine Coffee (sorry, had to do that). This roaster specializes in Nespresso compatible capsules and roasts up a pretty wide variety of coffee, including seasonal specialties. I love the idea of introducing specialty blends, as they keep a little excitement in the line, and interest in following the company.

I recently bought a few sleeves to try out, and Review; I'll report back in a while to let you know what I think.

Check out the HiLine Coffee blog for more information on their company and their nearly dozen blends.

Nespresso has changed their piercing system that is widely thought to prevent other capsule makers from working in their newest machines. Right now, HiLine has this statement on their website about compatibility:

"Our capsules are 100% compatible with the following Nespresso models: Citiz, Essenza, Maestria, U, Le Cube, Lattissima Plus and Pixie. Additionally, each batch of capsules is rigorously tested in all models of Nespresso machines for quality and consistency and to ensure proper operation. Please note that our capsules are currently not compatible with U machines purchased after November 1, 2013."

I think that's a pretty good list of compatible machines.

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February 12, 2014

Nespresso De'Longhi Latissima Pro Espresso Machine

Nespresso Latissima Pro

Nespresso and De'Longhi announced a new brewer, the Latissima PRO, a higher end machine that is se tot deliver espresso and milk based drinks in home kitchens. The Latissima Plus is already a favorite, giving easy access to higher quality espresso-based drinks.

The New Latissima PRO is boasting that is will be ready to brew Ristrettos, Espressos, Lungos, Lattes and Cappuccinos. This happens through a touch screen allowing for easy use.

The sidecar milk carafe (500 ml/17 fl ounce) plugs into the machine and can steam or froth milk, while it can be detached and stored in the refrigerator. The auto-clean system cleans the milk frothed after use.

The Latissima Pro heats up and is ready in 25 seconds; it also shuts off after use automatically after a few minutes to save energy.

Press release follows…..

ArrowContinue reading: "Nespresso De'Longhi Latissima Pro Espresso Machine"

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February 10, 2014

Want to Be Creative? Productive? Should you drink Coffee or Beer


No doubt, readers here at SingleserveEspresso know I love coffee, but they may not know I love beer too. (I know, probably not a big surprise either.)

Having brewed a few dozen batches of beer on my own, I appreciate a whole range of beers from summer swillers to coffee stouts.

I also like to read Medium, a pretty heady 'zine that has contributors sending in all kids of great articles. I stumbled onto this one that walks trough you choice between these two beverages and their roll in brain chemistry….. and its role in making you more creative or productive.

It's good to get to the bottom line and as Medium tells it, it's only an 8 minute read.

Coffee vs. Beer: Which Makes you More Creative?

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February 5, 2014

Nespresso At Target? Sadly No.

So, we knew about seeing the Nespresso machines on the Target.com website a while ago, and asked if that meant that Target Stores Would Be Selling Nespresso Machines and Capsules? Sadly, the answer near us is, "No."

Nespresso at Target.com/Nespresso

There must have been enough customers bugging the store employees that they needed to put this sign out on the shelf that reads, "Looking for Nespresso? Choose your favorite at Target.com/Nespresso"

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February 3, 2014

Illy Limited Edition Cup Collection - Liu Wei


Illy is well known for their cup designs, and to build on that brand equity, they also commission a new cup collection every year. The current one is by Chinese artist Liu Wei.

Liu Wei attempts to bring the cup and saucer together in a single design representing the ever evolving process of urbanization with structural changes and urban lines representing a man-made landscape.

More at Illy

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January 29, 2014

Breville BES870XL Barista Express Espresso Machine


The Breville BES 870XL espresso machine looks like a pretty cool machine for aspiring baristas. The countertop brewing station allows you to be lazy and brew like a consumer, pulling a shot through a double walled portafilter, where crema is all but guaranteed, or brew through a single walled portafilter to test your skills at tamping and brew like a barista.

When brewing through the double walled filter at the bottom of the portafilter, the backbressure is created from the wanter pressing through only a few openings. The build-up is almost guaranteed, and the extraction happens, emulsifying the coffee, water and wire to create that pillowy crema on top of the espresso.

When using a single walled filter, the bottom is more open and there is little to no back pressure created by the filter, relying on a proper grind, and tamp to create the proper amount of back pressure for extraction and crema production. If the tamp is too loose, the water channels through the puck, and you get a weak cup, too tight and you get flavor problems.

The Breville BES870XL, offers a built in burr ginger, that doses right into the portafilter, approximately a half gallon water reservoir, and controls to brew singles or doubles, and a sleek look with a temperature dial face.

At Amazon - Breville BES870XL Barista Express Espresso Machine

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January 27, 2014

Illy and Samsung Tie the Knot

Famed coffee name Illy has tied the knot with Samsung to create a symbiotic relationship that is sure to be watched for a while. The relationship is not about the machine; it's about a better or best in class retail experience. Illy is looking at an upscale retail experience, driven by a strong visual component. Samsung will help there.

Samsung on the other hand claims to want some reason to pause in their showrooms, and maybe a cup of Illy coffee can do that for them.

According to the press release, "The agreement is designed to pool the resources of both companies in order to leverage each other’s strengths and brand equities by utilizing Samsung’s legacy in technology innovation, electronic devices and multimedia content and illycaffè’s expertise in premium coffee, food and beverage retail marketing and their connections with a diverse set of artistic projects. The attention that both companies bring toward human creativity, specifically with regards to art and design, provide a common ground for the two brands."

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