Lets face it: making Cuban coffee, is an art form. In my 10+ years living in Miami, I have been given multiple lessons on how to make the perfect colada, and despite how simple my Cuban friends swear the recipe is, no matter how much I try, I just can’t get it right. The amount of sugar is always too much, or too little, and it never, ever, makes the very much sought after “espumita”. Despite my friend’s encouraging words and promises that it is good, it is clear that deep inside they just know that this is an art that only a lucky few can master. And being Cuban is usually the pre-requisite. I had come to accept my fate and dependence on Cuban co-workers and friends to have real cafecito, until I received an invitation to try Cubania, the newest coffee capsule by Nespresso, which is, coincidentally inspired by Cuban coffee! The beauty of it is that you don’t have to have Cuban blood running down your veins in order for get it right. If you have the machine and the capsules, it comes out perfect every.single.time.
I was recently invited to the launch event of this limited edition coffee at Nespresso’s South Beach location, and upon arrival, was delighted to learn that Michelle Bernstein, one of my favorite chefs in Miami, had designed a Cubania inspired menu for the occasion. Naturally, I took the opportunity to interview Chef Michy and learn more about her upcoming projects, but more on that later.
So, about the coffee. Let me start off by saying that it is not made with Cuabn coffee, so it is not exactly a replacement for Miami’s beloved cafecito. It is more of Nespresso’s take on the Cuban or Latin lifestyle, and the ritual of taking the time to enjoy a cup of coffee among friends. Did I mention that this is the highest intensity coffee by Nespresso… ever? Yes, it is the brand’s first capsule to reach intensity level #13, so rest assured, its awakening effects will definitely match your colada.
Cubania is made with a mix of mild Colombian bean and Arabica beans, as well as a luxurious Indian Robusta that is steam-treated to highlight the coffee’s intensity and achieve a rich and creamy finish. Despite the drink’s intensity, it has very little bitterness, which allows you to enjoy the coffee, as well as its aftertaste. You can drink it on its own as a single shot or ‘ristretto’, or café-style with 25ml of hot milk, which in my opinion, enhances the caramel notes in the blend. You can even enjoy it Cubano style, and Nespresso gives you the recipe and measures on their website.
The only down side of Cubania is that, as a limited edition, it is only available until December, so stock up while you can! They are currently out of stock on the website, but still available on Lincoln Road, and most likely at other Nespresso establishments around the country. Que lo disfruten!
PS: Stay tuned for this posts’s part 2 featuring my interview with Michelle Bernstein!