I sometimes wonder if anyone can enjoy coffee as much as I do, and as often as I do. Coffee has featured heavily in some of my previous posts, for example Ten things that refuel my energy levels and Five favourite things that get me through a “bad Mummy” day.
I really am an addict. It’s the first thing that enters my mind when I wake up – a warming cup of coffee seems to set me up for the day. It also sets me up for the mid-morning, lunchtime, mid-afternoon, and perhaps at teatime when I’m flagging a bit.
Sometimes I feel that coffee becomes so normalised that I forget about the type of coffee I’m drinking. I mainly drink instant when I’m at home, and will treat myself to a latte when out and about.
We do have a Nespresso* machine, but I had got out of the habit of using it. That is, until I had the oportunity to review the new Carte Noir Collection Espresso – a range of “exquisite espresso capsules” compatible with most Nespresso machines.
I was invited to be part of the Carte Noir Espresso Collective which includes media, bloggers and coffee lovers who all love coffee. Those who saw me crouched by the porch door, waiting for the postman to arrive, my have thought I was excited about this prospect.
The capsules came beautifully boxed, and inside each box the capsules were individually foil wrapped so I knew I was getting really fresh coffee. I was lucky enough to be sent 4 different varieties to try:
· N°3 Élégant: an exceptional pure Arabica coffee with a smooth and subtle taste enhanced by cereal notes.
· N°5 Délicat: a pure Arabica coffee with fruity notes and a silky texture
· N°7 Aromatique: an aromatic pure Arabica coffee with delicate hints of cocoa
· N°9 Intense: a rich, intense blend of pure, darkly roasted Arabica coffee
So I got out the Nespresso, popped a capsule in, served the resulting expresso in one of the lovely expresso cups I had been sent, and here’s what I thought:
The taste, flavour and quality. I was very impressed with the capsules, to the detriment of my fiancee who would probably say that I bent his ear about how good they are. The capsules give a very fresh, deep, rich coffee flavour. I tried the Aromatique as an expresso, followed by Élégant as a latte topped with lots of frothy milk. Both tasted great.
Ease of use with my Nespresso machine. There’s not much to say about this – the capsules worked in just the same way as a Nespresso capsule. I didn’t notice any difference – I just placed the capsule in and pressed go.
My favourite flavour. This is easy – the No. 9 Intense! If I’m having coffee, I like it to be, well, intense. that’s just my personal preference – the Délicat is light and fragrant, and would be my second favourite.
How to drink… As I’ve already said, a drink of coffee features heavily in my daily routine. I can drink expresso on its own or add frothy milk for a cappuccino or latte. But what other uses could I put this lovely expresso to?
– a delicious expresso and amaretto cocktail topped with cream
– vanilla ice cream with hot expresso poured over at the last minute and lovely chocolate wafers to dip in
– a delicious coffee and walnut cake- to create the deep, rich coffee flavour
– a simple hot toddy of expresso and bourbon
– a lovely, cool frappuccino with ice cold milk and lots of crushed ice – just add vanilla
– vanilla and expresso fudge
Ok, my mind has gone crazy with ideas- I’d better stop there.
Carte Noir Collection Espresso is now widely available in UK supermarkets. If you have a Nespresso machine – I recommend buying a few packets to try out the different flavours. They’re not too expensive for coffee capsules, at £2.79 for 10 servings. I think that’s great value.
Now, what time is it…mid morning by any chance?…
*Nespresso® is a registered trademark of a third party without any link with Mondelez International group. Compatible with all Nespresso®* machines bought before July 1, 2013. After that date, compatible with most Nespresso®* machines bought. For additional information regarding compatibility, please see UK: http://www.CARTENOIRE.co.uk/compatibility.
This post is an entry in the Foodies100 Espresso Collective Challenge, sponsored by Carte Noire. Each box of Carte Noire Espresso capsules contain 10 single servings and are available in supermarkets at an RRP of £2.79 and are available in four intensities. To find out more about the new Carte Noire Collection Espresso click here.
Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by Carte Noir. All opinions expressed are my own.