Not only did my Thanksgiving Coffee order arrive today (I only ordered it a couple of days ago!!!), but Starbucks called to tell me my espresso machine was in. Both in the same day. I was sooooo excited!!!
I'd done my research and weighing and balancing our needs, use, and budget, I had my heart set on a certain machine that got great reviews despite being in the lower middle price range. A Via Venezia by Saeco. Unfortunately, it's success seemed to make it near impossible to find. The company just came out with a slightly more expensive model with a couple more bells and whistles. I have a feeling they plan on phasing out the less expensive model and replacing it with the newer more expensive one.
Starbucks carried it in their online product line but it was Out of Stock and didn't seem likely to be IN stock again. But my local Starbucks, bless their friendly, helpful heart, searched and found me a remaining floor model at another Starbucks and had it sent up.
Isn't it purty!? And heavy. Oh. my. gawd! And this is important when you think of pushing the handle hard to seal it. There was a cheap espresso model available in town, it was about $30. I've seen three of these babies at the local thrift shop. Shall we assume they were a piece of crap? I can tell you one thing, they weren't much heavier than a popcorn maker. Do you have to have two people to operate one? One to make the coffee and one to hold down the machine? But my new machine - just try moving it. It's got a rubberized bottom and is heavier than at least TWO Ginny Weasleys - the Fattest Cat in the World.
It took less than an hour to take it out of the box, set it up, prime it, figure out how it worked, and head back out to the living room with our drinks of choice - espresso for Hubby, cappuccino for moi. The instructions were easy to follow. It would have taken less time but Hubby kept insisting I not turn the handle too far and I couldn't get a seal and it kept leaking. Once we figured out that indeed the handle needed to be more firmly turned, we were back on track.
Look at that beautiful foam. I couldn't get that sticker off the drain plate. Now that it's set up, it's almost automatic. It doesn't take any more time to use than our French Press. Our old machine had to have water refilled each time we used it, this one has a reservoir that will only need refilling after several regular days of use.
I think I've talked myself into making another cup. I better switch to decaf. Oh gee. I guess I'll have to open up another of our new bags of coffee. Tralala!