I mostly use my Ekobrew - occasionally I also use my Solofill - to use my own coffee in the machine anyway. And I love it. I love love love it.
Cut to HouseParty.com. If you're not familiar, basically House Party is a site that matches advertisers with people who want to throw themed parties in trade for a little word-of-mouth advertising. Sometimes there's a party for a TV show and the hosts will get a pack with some snacks and some themed goodies. Sometimes there's a party for a toy and the hosts will get a pack with toys, coupons, stickers, and more. And sometimes there's a party for a thing - like the SodaStream or the Keurig Vue. It's hard to get chosen as a host - there's really no way to tell how people are being chosen - and I tried multiple times to be chosen as a host for a SodaStream party (fail) and a Keurig Vue party (and a number of other parties as well).
And finally this time around, for whatever reason (I guess I was just the right demographic this time) I was chosen to host a Keurig Vue party and I was given a Keurig Vue V500 machine and a party pack with a selection of Vue Packs, mugs, mints, cookies, and cups. Nice!
The Vue uses an entirely different set of pods from the original Keurig - it uses Vue Packs. Was this created in response to the K-cup's patent expiring, opening the market to third-party K-cups? I have no idea. The Vue does have some nifty new features that the older Keurig models didn't have though. It brews hotter. You can set coffee to brew "strong" (and it uses a different process when you select this option). It has different settings for brewing tea or hot chocolate or iced drinks. And it can do a two-step process where it brews a latte (I've tried and enjoyed the vanilla latte), a mocha, or a cappuccino with a milk pod (that has actual milk in it, not non-dairy creamer - they do also have pods with non-dairy creamer, but I avoid hydrogenated oils so I can't speak to those at all).
Will the latte or cappuccino be as amazing as if you frothed milk separately? Probably not. Will it be fast and cost less than going to Starbucks? Yup. Will it taste good? Yup! Also the plastic part of the pods is recyclable - hooray!
Sure it's not pour-over or percolator or whatever. I think it tastes good. In fact, I think this makes better coffee than my old Keurig (which I still love) and possibly better than when I make pour-over coffee. Cold-brewed coffee, however, will always have a place in my heart - and my fridge. (Also, I have my eye on Solofill's reusable Vue Pack - but I'm also waiting to see what Keurig has to offer whenever they release their own reusable pack.)
For the party, I'm going to make heart-shaped donuts based on Snack Girl's recipe. I never get to do fun things like this so I'm going to do some other Pinterest-y things as well. I'll post again with a recap soon!
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