You might know Nespresso as the brand that popularized single-serve coffee, and the Nespresso Vertuo Plus takes convenience even further with a single-serve design that lets pods do the work. Nespresso’s Vertuo pods are specially designed to work within the Vertuo range, with built-in barcodes that adjust coffee maker settings to deliver optimal results for every blend. The brand would have you believe that this is one of the best Nespresso machines on the market, alongside the even flashier Nespresso Vertuo Next.
I tested the Nespresso Vertuo Plus for several weeks in this Nespresso Vertuo Plus review, to see if it was worth it. For a single-serve coffee maker, this is one of the more expensive machines on the crowded market, and unlike the older line of Nespresso coffee makers, you’re forced to use only Nespresso Vertuo pods with this machine. using patented barcode technology. That means no counterfeit grocery pods and a pretty significant ongoing cost if you drink a lot of coffee at home. So, is the Nespresso Vertuo Plus worth it?
I’ve reviewed several of the best coffee makers on the market, from Nespresso to Breville, so I know what to look for in a user-friendly coffee maker. I’d like to think I’m not a coffee snob, and if you are, I’d suggest you take a look at an espresso machine or something that will allow you to customize your drinks. If you’re reading this review because you want to find the best single serve coffee maker, you’ve come to the right place.
Nespresso Vertuo Plus: specifications
- Water tank capacity: 1.1L/ 37oz.
- Dimensions: 5.5″W x 16.9″D x 12.4″H
- Lester: 9 lbs / 4 kg
- Rope length: 29″ inches
- Water filter: Nope
- Hotplate : Nope
- Programmable: Nope
I was struck by the care taken in packaging Nespresso with the Nespresso Vertuo Plus. It comes in a box with a curved top, which splits into two parts to reveal the machine assembled and almost ready to use. There’s a lot of plastic and single-use packaging, which I never like.
After taking the machine out of the box, I then had to assemble it. To do this, I inserted the drip tray into the bottom of the machine. The drip tray is heavy and seems high quality, but it has a fairly small capacity and could overflow quite easily without regular emptying.
I also filled the water tank and placed it on its bracket on the back of the machine. This can swivel to sit on either side of the machine or to go right behind it, sticking out from the rear. To fill it, all you have to do is lift the water tank, bring it to the tap, then put it back in place. Note that this coffee maker does not come with a water filter, which could become an issue if, like me, you live somewhere with hard water.
Making coffee in the Nespresso Vertuo Plus
Once assembled, I rinsed the machine by pressing the center button several times. I then made my first drink, a lungo. The Nespresso Vertuo Plus can brew coffee drinks in four sizes: espresso, lungo, as well as 5oz and 8oz cups. Nespresso sent me a few different blends to sample on their site, including one of each size.
I tend to prefer espresso style drinks, and I usually top them off with some sort of steamed milk. Nespresso has a milk frother, the Aeroccino, but I didn’t have one to use with the machine and used my own handheld instead.
Making coffee is very simple. Simply select the capsule of your choice, gently press the underside of the hinge on the front of the machine and it will automatically pop up. When you have used the machine before, it lifts and slides the formerly used pod into the tray, which is on the side of the machine and is easy to remove and empty.
Then it’s a matter of dropping your pod into the holder, pressing down on the hinge and allowing it to lower, puncturing the seal on the pod with an audible “pop”.
After that, the button on the top of the machine will light up while the machine is warming up. Press it when the light turns solid and your coffee will begin to brew.
How the Nespresso Vertuo Plus works
As you will see, this coffee maker creates thick, luscious coffees with a very large crema layer at the top of the cup. This crema is nothing like the kind of crema you get with a freshly brewed espresso. It is artificially made by the machine, which rotates the pods to extract the coffee and create foam when brewing.
Just because this cream isn’t the most authentic doesn’t mean it isn’t enjoyable. After all, if you’ve read this far, you’re clearly not phased in making coffee from a metal pod, so I doubt the lack of a freshly ground bean will bother you.
You get all the fun and aesthetic parts of making a coffee with this machine. The drink visibly changes from a frothy brown to a light and dark coffee under a layer of foam. Add your milk and you have a realistic looking latte that tastes quite similar to what you’ll get at your local coffee shop chain.
Leave it too long though, and the illusion starts to fade slightly. The coffee thins out, much like a little bubble bath, leaving you with a much less enjoyable drink. I would suggest stirring your coffee before drinking it to avoid this.
How does it taste?
And the taste, then? Well, I was pretty happy with the taste of my Nespresso. It didn’t taste particularly delicious to me, but it’s certainly better than many single serve coffees I’ve tried over the years.
Because there are no rival brands making Vertuo pods (unlike the original Nespresso pods, which can be replaced by most coffee brands and even artisan coffee roasters), you are definitely attached to coffee of Nespresso quality. Whether that’s a good thing I’m not sure, but it’s totally drinkable and not overly sour or bitter. I would note that I wasn’t able to tell a big difference in taste between the different pods, but I could tell the difference in strength, which is indicated on the side of the containers.
I’m more of an espresso drinker, but my partner likes classic long coffees and gets along great with this machine. Unlike forcing water through already-mined grounds, as you will often do if trying to make a homemade americano using an espresso machine, these pods are perfectly dosed to make a variety of coffee sizes. different coffees. He got through that water tank much faster than me and ended up refilling it at least once a day, which says a lot about how much coffee we both drink while working from home.
Disposing of these pods made me feel a bit frustrated, because there really is so much waste involved with single serve coffee. Alternatives on the market such as recyclable pods and even devices you can buy to eject the coffee from your pod and add the grounds to your compost are coming, but the pace is slower than it should be, and it is undeniable that opting for the plus or the French press is the most durable movement.
Fortunately, Nespresso runs a recycling program for these pods which is very convenient to use if you buy pods regularly. With your pod order, they send a bag to collect the used pods which they will then collect upon delivery of the next batch.
Should you buy the Nespresso Vertuo Plus?
If you want a slim and sleek coffee maker to sit on your kitchen counter, I think the Nespresso Vertuo Plus could definitely be a contender. It has the benefits of simple brewing, but it still gives you Nespresso’s own take on quality coffee, with the crema-like foam that is a hallmark of the Vertuo range. The technology is undeniably smart too, and it’s nice to only have one button but be able to create a range of different drink sizes.
I enjoyed my coffee during the two weeks I spent testing this machine, and I was in no rush to return to my trusty De’Longhi bean-to-cup. There are so many pods to try (and Nespresso always makes more), so I’m sure if I had had more time with this machine, I could have found a favorite blend. It’s not one for coffee lovers, but if you enjoy a morning coffee but can’t be bothered with hand grinding, tamping, or measuring pressure, this reliable machine will make an effort. extra to make sure you never have a bad brew. . Busy parents will appreciate the quality over the effort that went into getting a fresh cup every morning.
About this review and our review
Millie is the editor of small appliances at Real Homes, which means her kitchen is always full of exciting new appliances that are constantly put to the test. This Nespresso Vertuo Plus was penned from Millie’s own home, where she tested the machine every day for weeks before drawing her conclusions.
She has now passed it on to a colleague at real houses team, meaning it will continue to be used on a daily basis. This review will be updated to reflect ongoing experiences we have with the Nespresso Vertuo Plus here at Real houses.