Life is full of small rituals. Every day, in various ways, we go about a repeating a series of habits that, when combined, eventually define who we are. Elevate this to a sophisticated level, and your rituals become a personal statement of style.
Like wearing the same bow tie every Friday or always asking for your martini to be 'stirred, not shaken' - we develop a taste for certain things, then refine that taste, over a series of years, to the point of sophistication.
For many people around the planet, there can be no greater ritual of sophistication than that of making coffee.
Name your poison
Thanks to the immense popularity of, and industry behind, coffee – over 2.25 billion cups are consumed daily – and recent feats of technology and engineering, you can now use your humble home coffee machine to create caffeinated beverages that were formerly the domain of only the most skilled barista.
Flat white with one. Cappuccino with extra chocolate powder on top. Black filter coffee, straight up. Doppio piccolo latte, AKA The Heart Starter. An espresso shot, drunk standing up, Italian-style. Anything is within your grasp, provided you have the right kind of technology and a little skill.
As tastes become more sophisticated, and coffee appreciation and education less esoteric, the ability to control and monitor every aspect of your coffee making process becomes all the more important.
From the courseness of the coffee grounds to the ratio of water to coffee – every single facet of production can have a huge impact on the flavour of the final cup.
Add further elements, like time and the method of extraction – steeping, filtering or pressure – and the simple act of adding water to ground coffee and separating brown water becomes a complex affair.
Factors of excellence
Producing a cup of coffee that stops conversation and invites compliments is no mean feat. Indeed, business meetings, contract negotiations and takeovers have hinged on the quality of the caffeine served to the decision makers.
When looking to buy a coffee machine for the office, or home office, many new machines will offer a range of quality control features; such as grinder setting, coffee dose control, water to coffee ratio and length of extraction. Many new machines also feature internet connectivity, so you can manage your brewing via your smartphone.
Managing an office full of different coffee tastes on the one machine can also be managed using individual profiles. Simply select the person in question, and their chosen cup of Joe is dispensed within moments. No more serving the CEO the foamy latte that was meant for the CFO.
Time is of the essence
If you don't have the time to stand around waiting for your java, you're in luck. By applying unconventional technology – vacuum suction! – to regular brewing techniques, a cold brew coffee that would have taken more than 10 hours to steep can be reduced to 10 minutes.
Likewise, with just a few taps of your smartphone app, a freshly brewed pot of coffee can be waiting for your team and their morning meeting before anyone has arrived at work.
Take a look through the gallery above of the latest high-tech coffee makers and start spending more time being productive and less time juggling coffee cups.
Check out the gallery above to see the best coffee machines to impress your guests.