Marking the second new coffee subscription service I've heard of this week, Lavazza Roast & Ground very recently launched and offers a less artisanal, internationalist approach to coffee than the excellent Beanz.com by Sage. Not surprisingly, the choice is all from Lavazza's range of beans and ground coffee. This may make coffee purists clutch their pearls and get an attack of the vapours, but personally I don't think there's anything wrong with Lavazza, especially if you want coffee that just tastes of coffee. No, it's not terribly subtle or nuanced, but it's very quaffable, and plenty of people just don't require subtlety or nuance in their morning beverage.
However, one thing that might really turn on coffee-loving potential customers is the deal Lavazza is offering to new subscribers, in conjunction with fellow Italian maestro, Smeg. Right now you can get a massive £400 off the excellent Smeg BCC02 bean to cup coffee maker. It is normally £699 but with this offer you get it for £299.
Sure, you'll have to spend at least £270 on coffee in order to take advantage of the offer – I'll come to the maths in a minute – but that's still a £130 saving overall. Also, obviously, you'll end up with an awful lot of coffee to drink for your outlay. To be precise, at least 20kg of it.
Overall, I'd say £495 for about a year's supply of coffee and an excellent coffee maker is a liquid gold deal. Because it's so compact for a bean to cup, and rather stylish too, the BCC02 is one of the best coffee machines you can buy for a smaller kitchen.
If you're not in the market for a new coffee machine, even with this much of a discount, Lavazza is also offering the option of foregoing the BCC02 and getting 15% off its coffee beans or ground coffee instead, when you subscribe to Roast & Ground.
The Smeg BCC02 is a great little machine that makes strong espresso in next to no time and also has a steam wand for texturing your milk for luxurious lattes and creamy cappuccinos. The wand takes a little getting used to but hey; it's good to learn new skills. It's also got a very small footprint, with dimensions of just 42x19x34cm (length by width by height). It's available in several eye-catching colours but, alas, for the purposes of this deal your choices are limited to chic white or classic black.
Lavazza coffees on offer include everything from Qualità Rossa – arguably the most famous coffee beans in Europe, in their instantly recognisable red bag – to the more upmarket Barista Gran Crema. You have the option of whole beans or ground.
Let's crunch the numbers then. The Smeg BCC02 officially costs £699, although it seems to be around the £640 mark in several UK shops at the moment. To pick one up for £299 you need to sign up for at least 10 deliveries, of at least 2kg each. There's no charge for postage. As far as I can see, the cheapest option here is to go for entry-level Crema e Aroma beans. These will set you back £27 for 2kg, meaning you'll pay a minimum of £270 overall which makes a total outlay of £569 including the coffee machine.
So you could think of this as getting £130 off a BCC02 bean to cup coffee machine and receiving a colossal 20 kilos of coffee 'free'. That much coffee would be easily a year's supply for many people. Even for me, that's a good 8-9 months worth.
Presumably this offer won't last long, so go and take a look at it now, is my advice to you. And if you don't want a new machine, there is also the option of subscribing to Roast & Ground on its own, and getting 15% off all Lavazza's beans instead.