Five years ago I bought a milk frother, since I decided not to have a proper espresso machine with a foam nozzle. It was made, or rather, labelled and distributed, by a well-established Swedish brand, it had gotten good reviews for perfect foam and a good price-device relationship, and it worked well until it, 2 months after the warranty had expired, expired too with a scratch, a fizz and a bleep.
So I bought another one and took an effort to handle it extra carefully. It behaved exactly like the first one: perfect foam for a blissful while and then an unannounced exit from this world. I e-mailed the customer service of the firm, mentioned the exact nature of the problem (the motor’s collector gets damaged through normal use and cannot be accessed for repairs) and within days I got a third frother sent home for free. This summer, it quietly joined the others. Now I bought another frother, this time by a German fancy design brand. Let’s see how this one survives. It foams better, the motor makes less noise and it stands all by itself on the counter.
Why do I persist in wanting milk frothers? Because they are great. For someone who had his early milk-frothing training using a cheap and coarse wire brush in a battered aluminium pan, they are the symbol of coffee culture luxury.