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friday foodie: nespresso


I’m going to admit it: when Nestle released Nespresso machines a few years ago, I thought they were going to be a fad. They seemed convenient, but surely people would put away their pods in return for the ritual of their own espresso machine, right? Or return to the even less quick fix of instant? Right?

If the Nespresso store in Bondi Junction is anything to go by, the simple answer to that is NO. Nespresso has firmly cemented itself as a new way to get a coffee fix, and many offices now offer machines in their communal kitchens. Nespresso machines work in a “pod” system: you insert a foil sealed coffee pod in your machine, and it pierces the top and mixes it with hot water under high pressure. This brews the coffee, and then it flows into your coffee cup.  There is also a standalone automatic milk jug, which will froth milk if you feel inclined to add it.

The wonderful thing about Nespresso capsules is that they make it easy for coffee beginners.  They sell pods in different flavours and numbered strengths (who could forget the advertisement that revealed George Clooney was a decaffeinato drinker?) so you can be assured that you’ll get a consistent coffee every time.

Along with their standard pods, Nespresso often release special edition pods. Last month, they released two pods inspired by Italy – Napoli and Trieste.  While the flavours in each are robust and both made with Arabica beans, the Trieste has notes of chocolate and fresh hazelnut, making it an easy drink to enjoy as an espresso, or to enjoy mixed with milk (although, if you want to drink like an Italian, don’t do a cappuccino after 11AM).  The Napoli , while also made with Arabica beans, is a smokier coffee best served as an espresso. Just be warned – the Trieste has a strength of 9, and the Napoli an 11, so if Mr Clooney is coming over…

To celebrate these special edition flavours, some special recipes have been whipped up,one of which is located at the end of this post, and is perfect for a Friday – a Nespresso Napoli Cocktail. What could be better than a combination of vodka and coffee to get you perked up after a long work week?

The range is $8.40 for a sleeve of 10 capsules, which, even adding the cost of milk, makes it more cost effective than stopping at the corner coffee store on your way to work.

As Doltone House‘s Executive-Chef James Kidman has discovered, Nespresso machines also make for an easy way to effortlessly add coffee flavours to his dishes,  something he is enjoying because, “I like using coffee (Nespresso of course) in food because it has different nuances that compliant not only sweet but savoury foods. A hint of coffee with venison is a beautiful savoury application as is a deep coffee flavour in a classic tiramisu.”

And how do I rate Nespresso machines? While I don’t think they produce coffee as amazing as a fantastic barista, they do make good, quick, and mess-free coffee every time.  So, if you’re after a coffee fix in the morning that is easy and consistent, I’ll definitely recommend the sleek little number. And I’ll definitely recommend the cocktail. It is Friday, after all.


Nespresso Napoli Cocktail


 Cocktail Ingredients:

50ml Belvedere Vodka

10ml Grand Marnier

25ml Nespresso Napoli Grand Cru Coffee

5ml Agave syrup


  1.  Combine all ingredients in cocktail shaker with ice
  2.  Shake vigorously and strain into a chilled coupet glass
  3.  Garnish with fresh orange zest sprinkled over the top


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