Here’s the latest crisis to hit the Minted household – our Nespresso is broken! Seven years of service and now the lever press won’t puncture the capsules properly. End result = an inch of brown-tinged hot water in the mug.
I could make myself an instant coffee very easily. But it’s not the same as a hot shot of caffeine which you can glug down in two seconds on your way out of the door for the school run. So where’s George Clooney when you need him? And why am I even thinking that I need to ask a man about fixing it when all the Minted males are DIY non-approved? Up to yours truly to solve the problem as usual.
So I phoned the local workshop which no longer fixes Nespresso machines. Then - because I’m quite practical - I took a squizz at how to open the thing up myself. Only to discover that Nespresso uses oval-headed screws which you need a special tool to operate or a dedicated Nespresso technician …
Teeth-gritted, I rung the helpline. I had to go through the postcode drill before any solution could be offered. By this stage I was really seething. I don’t want to be a member of the club and have marketing blurb targeted at my every interface: just fix my machine!
Luckily for Shaun on the other end of the line, I calmed down as he started grilling me about my capsule choice. I wasn’t brave enough to confess to using the Marks & Spencer’s fake ones (and all the other brands) which are cheaper than the real deal. Plus there’s no rubbish with postage and delivery unless you order 200. Charlotte and I disagree on whether the flavour adds up but then it’s rocket fuel, not taste, that I’m after.
In the end it didn’t matter because, following Shaun’s patient instructions we are back in business. Essentially I had to run clean water (and no capsule) through the system three times. It's basically the descaling operation (without the descaler) which you should be able to find out how to do on your own model in its manual or on the Nespresso site here. Certainly calling the freephone number (0800 442 442 by the way) is a lot cheaper than the all-in-one collect, mend and deliver back Nespresso service.
While I’m grateful to have my coffee shots back, I wasn’t so thrilled that I let the lovely Shaun flog me a couple of descaling “kits”. (Cheaper alternatives, including Oust. are available). I can see other people, deprived of their favourite brew, might be persuaded though. I haven't used the M&S capsules again and so far, so good. Really, I should revert to Gold Blend and put all my savings into Nespresso (ie Nestle) shares.