A few weeks ago our coffee machine packed a sad and stopped working. In actuality it was a little more dramatic than that. For the sake of sanity we bought a pod machine to tide us over until the coffee machine was fixed.
I like these pod machines, turn them on, stick in a pod, push a button and out pours a very decent coffee, throw the pod away, easy, clean and convenient.
The new switch arrived for the old machine and was duly fitted. We could go back to our usual coffee and the pod machine could be used for camping or glamping as we like to call it in this family. I switched on the machine, loaded it with coffee and pushed the button. Out came trickle of coffee. Christmas was going to be here before this cup was filled with coffee. There was clearly a blockage. Right, out with the citric acid. I’d have this fixed in no time; just call me ‘goddess of the coffee machine’. I flushed the coffee machine several times over with no joy. It was still emitting coffee in a painfully slow dribble, back to the pod machine, for now.
Maybe it was time to buy a new machine. Google oh how I love thee Google. I went online and researched pod machines picking out one I thought would suit us, we would pay more per cup but I could live with that given that pod machines are quite a bit cheaper than a manual espresso machine and we would have all that convenience. In the depths of the grey matter that passes for my brain there were niggles. I had questions, back to Google.
How fresh is the coffee in those pods? Surely the coffee can’t be as fresh as grinding your own.
How good does pod coffee taste compared to coffee from an espresso machine? According to these guys the pod coffee doesn’t taste as good and some of their comments seemed to echo my concerns as to its freshness.
What about the environmental impact? All these non-recyclable pods going into landfill plays on my conscience.
Just how much more am I paying? 1 Kg of Gloria Jeans’ Beans is $30.09 and would yield 125 cups if ground and 8 gm used per cup. A pack of 16 pods from Gloria Jeans is $8.05 with each pod being 8 gm of coffee. That’s a whopping $62.87 for the same weight of coffee.
The evidence was pointing to the manual espresso machine as being a better choice but I still wasn’t convinced so I delved a little further into recycling of these pods. It turns out there are refillable pods you can purchase that you can fill with your choice of ground beans. Perfect, the best of both worlds but as practical Peter pointed out they completely negate the easy, clean and convenient features that drew me to the pods in the first place.
I decided perhaps we would stick with the manual machine so I researched prices for a machine equivalent to the one we would be ditching. The cost would be around $600, outrageous! I’d rather put that towards new gear for my camera.
Once more to Google and ‘how to descale a coffee machine’. I found a post that mentioned using CLR. With nothing to lose I gave it a go and lo and behold it worked. Yes earth mother woman, I know CLR is poison but I rinsed well. Now if it eats away our intestines the damage will most certainly be minimal, anything for a decent coffee.
Which do you prefer a coffee pod machine or a manual espresso machine?