There are some things in life that we want but don’t need. That’s how I felt about electric milk frothers before I got one. I had always been curious about them, but with limited storage and many already underused appliances, it never seemed worth it. Now I realize that my mornings would be bleak without one. And when you make a drink at home that would be $6 at the café down the street, it’s all the more satisfying. So I’ve been whipping up velvety cortados in the mornings and golden milk lattes as afternoon pick-me-ups, and all of a sudden I’m my own live-in barista. 

We’ve all owned the handheld equivalent; the battery-operated cheap thrill that gets the job done. But it’s hard to even put the two in the same category once playing around with Illy’s Electric Milk Frother. As someone who is easily intimidated by too many functions (and technology in general), I love that this machine has only three settings: hot, cold, and hot chocolate—yes, it froths your milk and heats it up. And the buttons happen to be satisfying touch-screen icons that light up when in use. The process stops automatically once the consistency and temperature are just right, which means you can continue your morning routine and let it do its thing. I’ve mainly used oat milk, but any type works. 

While most electric milk frothers provide similar functions, few look as good on your counter. Designed by Italian architect Piero Lissoni, it’s no wonder it has a streamlined elegance about it. Competitor models are also a little pricier than Illy’s, with Nespresso at $120 and Smeg at $210. This one is $90. Now I can finally be that person who offers after-dinner macchiatos while hosting. 

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