Over the last several years I've been dealing with various stages of disability thanks to ALS. My goal is to share solutions and review various products/tools/devices that I have found particularly helpful.

Monday, 28 May 2012


Me, like a lot of people I love a good cup of coffee. Particularly first thing in the morning. But with my disability affecting my hands to such a degree it was starting to become very difficult to make a cuppa coffee on my own. Using a regular drip machine, I would have coffee grounds all over the countertop  and then there was always the adventure of pouring the coffee into the cup… This was exponentially worse when I tried to make espresso.

Nespresso Pixie
So several months ago I discovered an Nespresso coffee machines. They make a very good espresso and the coffee is all preloaded into little capsules making it extremely easy to pour. Drop the puck in, close the chamber, push the button, wait a few seconds and enjoy.

The machine shown here is exactly the one I purchased. It's the pixie and it sells for about C$250, making it a bit expensive for a cup of coffee but about on par with other espresso machines. What is particularly great about this machine is the handle. In some large silver ring on the top left of the machine which is used to close the machine, and puncture the capsule. If you are like me and have a significant impairment of your hands this lever is extremely easy to grasp and close.

There are a number of different machines to choose from, with of course varying price and functionality. But for me the accessibility  provided by this machine via the handle is what really appealed to me.

Of course there are also a number of other coffee brewing machines which operate on capsules or packets, some of which are cheaper. However for the price is the only one that I found which is an actual espresso machine. Meaning the coffee is actually brewed at 19 bars of pressure and because of this it makes a very nice creama (coffee foam).

There is a wide choice of capsules to choose from, 16 total ranging from mild through two very strong coffee. The price of which is between $.63 and $.69 each. This might seem a little bit expensive, but price comparison to the other non-espresso pods at the local supermarket shows them to be only marginally more expensive for good quality coffee. One must also keep in mind that these are expressing portions, meaning a long poor will only give you 125 mL, or about half a regular cup. That being said, with the richness of the espresso and the shakiness of my hands, I find a half a cup portion to be about right.

Although Nespresso recommends many of the capsules only be used for short shots of coffee, I find using a long poor on any of the stronger ones still gives a very pleasing and rich beverage. However easily reprogram the length of the poor should you choose to do so.

another feature that is interesting to this model, is that the little tray that you see the cup of coffee sitting on the image folds up allowing you to place a regular sized coffee cup instead. I find that this way I have a little bit of a safety margin with a regular cup, so I'm less likely to spell it in the cup itself is much easier to hold on to.

So if you are coffee lover like me and have some kind of issue affecting dexterity. This machine could very much be an answer for you.

Cost: C$250
Pro: very accessible espresso machine, with no mess and it's very easy to operate.
Con: only accepts Nespresso capsules

1 comment:

  1. That being said, with the richness of the espresso and the shakiness of my hands, I find a half a cup portion to be about right. Miami Vending Machines