I'm a student doing a very important investigation into why people buy coffee machines - not your love for the little brown bean or the kick it gives you to get out of bed. More specifically, was there a person that tipped you over the edge. So far my research had led me to believe that it is either: a member of your family, friend, brand representative or a shop/store assistant.
I wasn't much of a coffee drinker at all until recently. I had a tradition for years of buying a venti iced latte at Starbucks every morning I had to get up very early to catch a plane. Things changed last June when I was on a particularly stressful business trip to Vancouver and discovered that coffee could do more than just simply wake you up and I really enjoyed the taste.
So when I returned, I searched for a cheap espresso machine, so that I could make iced lattes at home. First, I bought a $6 "espresso" machine at Goodwill, which was actually a glorified steam moka. When I found out it was not a real espresso machine, I found a used Saeco Aroma for $60, which was my first machine, which then led me to the Starbucks Barista...And then I started making hot drinks...learning to foam milk...learning that SBDU machines are awful for steaming milk...then to the broken, abused Oscar I paid a whopping $550 for on CL...and then to that fateful day when Helen arranged for her and I to have our Oscars modified by Plindy...took my Oscar on the road...then my recent budget changed and I decided it was time for my first brand-new machine, my recently-purchased ECM Technika IV.
So, so for me, it was a personal obsession, mainly fueled by my desire to see that oozing, stripy cone that tells me that hours of practice and research and hundreds of dollars of equipment have all converged into this buttery, aromatic little cup the size of a shot glass.
Store personnel I guess did help me make my most recent decision, though it was the owner of 1st Line, Jim. He steered me gently away from the Vibiemme Domobar Super HX (my initial first choice) to my current machine. I was similarly sold on my Vario-W by a personal demonstration of the grinder by Baratza's founder, Kyle, at their HQ. I can only imagine that if shop assistants helped all of us make our purchase, we would all end up with Breville 800s *zing!*.
My friends and family? They have looked on in bemusement, all the while tentatively cheering me on and enjoying the results of my obsession.
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