I promised a mini review of our newly purchased coffee machine over the weekend, so here it is, only a tad later than I promised.
So, firstly let me explain why we bought one! We love coffee as much as the next person, drinking coffee has been one of those rituals that become a force of habit. It’s part of our slow weekend mornings, EVERY weekend. Well, Saturdays I’m usually running around the house whilst drinking a coffee, packing Shreya’s swim kit and bits, and attempting some dodgy mascara whilst taming freshly washed hair; all at the same time. Whilst the boys sit patiently waiting for us to leave the house, a bit like waiting for a storm to pass. Sundays are less adrenaline inducing. Coffee is also, nearly always part of my social schedule if meeting friends or school mums, and there’s always a coffee house stop during family days out – or whilst milling about on the local high street with the kids. Some of our fave local coffee shops …. Coffee Architects, The Larder 23, Bar Angeli, Bardias and Joe and the Juice (not as local but close enough)! There’s a few further afield but let us stick with ones that we visit regularly for the sake of this post.
We had a coffee pod machine many moons ago (think it might have been a wedding gift), we’ve been using a Cafetiere in more recent years and even more recently one of those Italian Espresso makers for more intense flavours. So we’ve been after something where we can buy fresh coffee beans and make even better coffee.
We decided this month we’d take advantage of a Black Friday deal in John Lewis, and invest in a Sage Duo Temp Pro machine. Unfortunately since writing this post it’s showing out of stock but am sure they will be back online soon. The deal – £300 reduced to £230. In fact, John Lewis were cheaper than anywhere else (so we found). It comes with a steam wand and milk jug, and a razor to ensure the right amount of coffee goes into the portafilter. We had a go at experimenting making a few different types of coffees over the weekend, and it was actually the perfect weekend to put it to the test, as we had family staying with us. Why this particular one? We liked the look of it, the brushed stainless-steel look and designed by Heston Blumenthal, we always see it when shopping, admiring it’s features. So the day we went in to actually purchase it, we got chatting to one of the sales reps for Sage who made Amar an espresso and me a latte to try and we were impressed! They have more expensive versions but this was our budget and it met our expectations . It’s easy to feel overwhelmed with all the different brands.
Whole bean vs Grinded? At the moment we’re using coffee that’s been pre-grinded but I guess we will want to try whole coffee beans at some point (will need to buy a separate grinder though which will need further researching). I think starting prices are around £20 for one of those, but that may be the most basic and not necessarily the best one to extract the flavour! So, the only other device we have bought for now is a ‘Sage’ Knock Box – this is just simply a container to add any waste. We were given some helpful tips when purchasing the machine that the excess coffee grounds can be used for flower beds as fertiliser! Not that we’re into planting AT ALL! We’ve killed most stuff we’ve planted or that’s been planted for us.
I’m sure there’s an actual Barista course you can go on! But, for now, I’ve got my tech-savvy husband that’s got it all sussed and is due to give me a tutorial this week to get the best out of the machine. However, I’m a little worried that if I actually get shown how to use it like a pro, I’ll be slightly addicted come Christmas…! The aim is to be able to do some coffee art for Christmas Eve hosting – hearts, Christmas Trees, tulips, that sort of thing?? I think it’s a great little machine, worth the price, and we will continue to get our money’s worth out of it over the years to come.