So when I received the Circolo for review I had some pretty high expectations knowing what I know about my past two machines. When I took my Nescafe Dolce Gusto Circolo machine out of the box, it reminded me of something from outer space and like it might start hovering around my kitchen at any moment. But I like the fact that it looks a bit space age and modern, it’s also a great space saver to. It’s slimline shape means it can sit flush up against the wall and doesn’t protrude onto my valuable bench space. I also love the illuminating light that lights up your cup so you can see what you’re doing.
One thing I love with the Circolo is that you can select how much you would like to fill your cup, my other two machines were pre-set. The Circolo comes with a play & select wheel whereby you turn the wheel to your desired setting (the lines illuminate).
But let’s go back to the beginning. So I’d taken my space age looking machine out of its box and I was itching to try a coffee. But first, I had to follow the instructions and prep the machine to be used for the first time. It wasn’t easy. I must admit, I’m pretty good when it comes to following instructions and user manuals but I didn’t find this one easy to follow and it’s probably because all the instructions were in images and not written in text as such. I could have sworn I was doing the right thing, but the machine just wouldn’t work…no water would come out. I ended up passing it over to Mr. G who got it working by following the ‘de-scaling’ instructions which was strange because it was a brand new machine and wouldn’t normally require de-scaling.
So once we got the Circolo working it was time to make a coffee. I got caught out with the image (no text) instructions again and prepared my cappuccino incorrectly two times before I figured it out. I wondered why when I put in a capsule I saw milk coming out instead of coffee. It was at that point I looked in the box and realised that there were milk capsules and coffee capsules (a pleasant discovery). I looked at the images and finally understood – you put the milk capsule in first, set the play & select wheel to the setting shown on the pod and box and press the button. After adding the milk, you then add the coffee capsule and do the same process and then voila! you have a perfect frothy cappuccino, no frothing or steam required.
I also love the fact that they have the milk pods for the Cappuccino or the Cafe Au Lait has the coffee and milk combined in a single pod. To me that is very convenient because we often run out of milk and I just can’t do a coffee without milk. It also has a cold button to make cold drinks like the Nestea Peach or Cappuccino Ice.
When I’m in desperate need of a coffee in the morning, the other great thing with the Circolo is that as soon as you turn it on, it heats in an instant so you don’t have to wait. Some other helpful features that I like is the little mechanism that you can pull out and move up and down to suit the size of your cup and the container to dispose of your spent capsules.
There is a great range of capsules that you can buy for the Circolo, but these are the ones I’ve tried, my favourites being the Cappuccino and Cafe Au Lait.
Espresso Ristretto – Also known as ‘corto’ (short), Ristretto is a very short espresso shot with less water passed through the coffee than an espresso.
Cafe Au Lait – The rich flavour of coffee with the sweetness of milk, all in a single capsule.
Cappuccino – A shot of rich espresso topped with deliciously sweet frothy milk. Cappuccino is Italian for hood, as the foam atop a cappuccino retains the heat of the coffee – just like a hood. (I also purchased and tried the Skinny Cappuccino which is low fat milk and was just as nice but perhaps not as strong).
Chocolatte – A rich, velvety hot chocolate made with premium cocoa beans. This drink has the flavour of cocoa with a delicate layer of frothy milk.
Other capsules available – Espresso Intenso, Espresso Decaf, Caffe Americano, Chai Tea Latte, Latte Macchiato, Skinny Latte Macchiato, Caramel Latte Macchiato, Cappuccino Ice, Nestea Peach, Mocha.
The Nescafe Dolce Gusto Circolo retails for $229 and is the perfect gift for a loved one or for yourself. You’ll really enjoy making a cafe style coffee for your visitors, I know I was excited to make one for my dad yesterday! And if you’re a lover of coffee like me, you’ll have lots of fun trying the capsule range and perhaps save lots of money buying cafe coffees too!
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Disclosure: I received a Nescafe Dolce Gusto Circolo Capsule Machine plus three boxes of capsules for the purpose of a review. My thoughts and opinions are my own and do not necessarily reflect the views of Nestle. You can read a copy of my disclosure statement here.