- Includes Aeroccino Plus milk frother: rapid one touch preparation of hot or cold milk froth, Items sold separately valued at $298
- Fully automatic piercing, brewing and ejection of used capsules with a retracting coffee outlet to stop dripping after coffee is brewed
- 27-ounce water tank rotates fast pre-heat time: 25 seconds for use with Nespresso coffee capsules only
- Automatic memorization of one of three cup sizes: Ristretto, Espresso and Lungo Removable magnetic cup/drip tray for larger milk recipes
- Light indicator for empty water tank/full capsule dispenser, holds 12 used capsules, 19 bar pump pressure, Auto off after 9-minute of inactivity
Nespresso Espresso Machine: Nespresso U C50 Espresso Maker with Aeroccino Milk Frother, Pure Cream Reviews
U is designed for YOU to personalize; cream color is sharp-looking (By I Do The Speed Limit)
Comparing this new model to the other machines in the Nespresso lineup, it is obvious that the U was designed for you. It is marvelously and amazingly designed and quality-crafted; a fine little machine that works with expertly-crafted coffee blends to provide you with an amazingly wonderful coffee experience.
This particular model offers a milk frother alongside the coffee maker–and that is a real plus. The Aeroccino milk frother is also available for sale on its own, so this duo provides real value.
REGARDING THE CREAM COLOR: I have the U in the Pure Black color. (I received the U machine through the Amazon Vine review program.) I have a CitiZ in a cream color and that “cream” color is a bit more yellow than the one offered here, (and I don’t think the CitiZ is even offered for sale in that color anymore). But for all intents and purposes the cream colors are similar enough. My experience will tell you to go with the cream color if you can–it doesn’t show the fingerprints, dust and scratches like the shiny black does. The cream color is NOT a pure white color. And I’m not saying the plastic finish is cheap looking or easy to scratch, but if a sharp object makes contact with it, it will scratch. The gray-colored U will hide the dust and prints, too.
All things considered: The U works every bit as well as the older and taller (but not much taller) CitiZ and the smaller and portable Pixie. The differences are in how the U is designed to fit your needs: The water vessel can be positioned to the left, the right, or behind the machine. There are three volumes from which to choose–not just two (as with the CitiZ and Pixie). And the three volumes can be easily and quickly reprogrammed by you for infinite possibilities.
The cup platform can be removed from the front of the machine and stored on the side–with the help of a very nifty and well-placed magnet.
It just appears to be the most stylish, the most efficient and the most streamlined machine in the Nespresso lineup.
**The ability to position the water reservoir is an important feature.** You should analyze the space where you want to place your machine, taking into consideration that the act of removing the vessel, adding water, and replacing the vessel will happen often. With any water vessel, you must lift it to remove it. Check to see if you have enough clearance. Can you remove the water reservoir without pulling the machine forward? If not, then this machine is the one for you, because you can position the reservoir on either side–instead of behind.
I think the whole line of Nespresso machines are far better than Tassimo and Kuerig machines. The Nespresso machines are better designed: They work quicker and quieter; have a smaller footprint and are less bulky; are much better looking, and, most importantly, the quality and variety of the espresso blends cannot be beat. I haven’t tried the new Starbuck’s machine, but I do know this U has a smaller footprint, has a lot more style, and (when you consider how you can manipulate the water reservoir) it is more user-friendly.
YOU CAN STOP READING HERE: While the above paragraphs sum up my opinion briefly, you can keep reading for more information. Sorry, but I found it hard to streamline this review–after all, I’ve purchased (and dumped) three Tassimo machines; I purchased and use the Nespresso CitiZ and the Latissima on a daily basis–they both sit on our kitchen counter; I own a single-serve Gaggia by illy that sees very little use lately; I acquired a Jura ENA Uno about four months ago, and it daily provides us with freshly ground and brewed beans (we buy Peet’s beans)–it sits on an antique buffet-turned-coffee-bar in our family room, and last, but not least, I’ve also acquired two different-colored Pixies, one with an Aeroccino frother. I’m thinking I’ve got some experience upon which I base my opinions.
COMPARED WITH THE PIXIE: I don’t know why this impresses me, but on the Pixie there is a white back-lighting (around the spent capsule compartment) that I think is way, way cool. Plus, the back-lighting allows you to safely grab your hot coffee in the dark. If you’re low on water, the light shines red. That nifty light, together with the smaller size, the portability, and the matte and metal finish force me to write that I LIKE PIXIE BETTER THAN U.
REGARDING THE AEROCCINO: Several years ago when I first investigated this frother, it was valued at nearly a hundred dollars–so there is great value in purchasing it along with the U espresso machine. It’s a great little gadget: It has a beautiful shiny metal outside surface that is very substantial; it is quiet; it is quick; it produces beautiful soft foam; the handle is strong and easy on the hand, and because it has a high quality non-stick inner surface, it is easy to clean by simply rinsing it out. Because it’s not attached to the espresso machine, you can move it around and you can use it for other drinks besides coffee. Its DOWNFALLS: The base is lightweight and will not grip a counter top; the heavy electric cord is adequately long, but excess cord cannot be hid in the base, and the worst offense: The spout will leave you with a drip every time. In comparison to the Starbuck’s model, this frother is made of a high quality, beautiful metal; the Starbuck’s is black plastic.
COMPARED WITH THE LATISSIMA MILK FROTH: I like the froth created by the Latissima better than the froth from the Aeroccino. The Latissima foam is finer and thicker, and it is ADJUSTABLE. I also like the fact that the milk container on the Latissima can be easily disengaged from the machine and stored in the frig. There is no waste and clean-up is accomplished with a few seconds push of a button; only enough milk is sucked through the machine per serving. In a morning rush, it is easier to set the container of unused milk back in the frig. If you want easy cleaning with The Aeroccino, the residue milk has to be rinsed before you leave the house.
LET’S DISCUSS COFFEE: After all, the machine is just a vessel for the end result. And if the coffee that is made for the machine isn’t great, then why even look at the machine. The coffee in the Nespresso pods is superb. It’s way better than anything available from Tassimo or Kuerig.
It’s been several years since we switched from a Tassimo machine to a Nespresso machine. (If you want to hear about why I totally dislike Tassimo, ask me and I’ll be happy to elaborate.) At the time of the switch, we were used to drinking large-size cups of coffee. So we felt we were taking a chance on the Nespresso blends–not knowing if we’d be able to tolerate the change from a big cup of brew to just a few sips. But the change has been effortless and so rewarding: Because the coffee is so smooth and rich, it is easier and more satisfying to relish a few sips rather than big gulps of average-tasting coffee. We really didn’t know what we were missing.
If you think you like more mild coffee and think that espresso will be too strong for you–then you think like I did. And I was wrong, and there is no reason to be afraid of Nespresso expresso and lungo (long cups–still pretty small): This great coffee is not bitter; it has a variety of fragrances, and feel, and flavors in each sip–and I’ve found that I am now leaning towards the more \”intense\” blends. With the U, there are three buttons to choose how much water you want to pass through each disc, and they are easily programmable, which offers you an infinite variety of strengths. Now I find that I prefer to go along with the pre-programmed amount of water for each blend. After all, the recommendations come from experts and they know what they’re doing!
Nespresso has a lineup of 16 blends (plus there are special blends offered throughout the year). The blends by Tassimo and Kuerig cannot compare. It might have something to do with the fact that the Nespresso pods are made of aluminum and keep the ground coffee fresher than the others which are all made of plastic or maybe the Tassimo and Kuerig product is made to suit less savvy, less experienced coffee drinkers. I can’t offer a comparison between the Nespresso and Starbuck pods, because I’ve not tried the Starbucks’ Verismo system yet. I can say that Starbuck pods are more expensive than Nespresso pods, and there are way fewer choices. Regarding the \”green-ness\” of the pods: Nespresso’s are recyclable and the others are not.
If anyone is interested in more details of the 16 Nespresso Grand Crus: Nespresso uses about 95% Arabica and 5% Robusta in its blends. Their beans come from Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Kenya, Ethiopia and India. Blending, roasting and grinding are all variables that enter into creation of a particular flavor blend. Investigating the blends, it is obvious that most of the beans come from Central and South America, Nespresso does not have a blend that features Kenyan Arabica beans–and that is my only dissatisfaction with the Nespresso lineup. We love Kenyan coffee and own a Jura ENA Uno machine so that we can brew our favorite Kenyan coffee from Peet’s on the West Coast. It is interesting to note that the Starbucks’ Verismo system does not offer a Kenyan pod at this time. I’ve got more info on the different Grand Crus–just ask me; I’ll keep an eye on this review.
You don’t give up any flavor by using the convenience of a Grand Cru capsule. And don’t think that the capsules \”cost too much\”: You want great coffee? You’re going to have to pay for it. Amen. It doesn’t matter if you grind your own or buy it in capsule form. In fact, I pay more cup-for-cup when I grind my own.
Two other things: Nespresso augments their 16 regular blends with a special, limited-time-only blend about three times a year. And it is very, very easy to buy the capsules. They are available online at nespresso.com. The ordering process is simple, the product is always fresh, customer service efficient and pleasant, and shipment is quick, quick.
If someone tells me the Nespresso capsules do not produce the \”best espresso you’ll ever have\”, I ask them where to get a better one: If they’re being completely honest, the answer will not be \”I get a better espresso at home\”, not unless that person is an expert with a very expensive machine.
One last thought on the capsules: The jewel-toned, aluminum capsules are a visual treat. The capsules are like little gems, little bon-bons. They are truly beautiful to look at. While it is surely not the most important point to be made about the 16 Grand Cru, I always like to remember to use all my senses when drinking coffee.
If time is money – then Nespresso is worth the extra cost (By Gene Gorter)
Is this the best Espresso ever? No. That was at the Chelsea Market in Manhattan. Amazing! But a trip to New York is to expensive and time consuming for me every morning. So Nespresso is a fair trade off.
The espresso is good, fast, consistent and leaves little mess.
Most people order the pods online. I happen to live near one of the few (I think only 4) Nespresso boutiques in the country so I stock up there. The boutique is on ritzy Newbury street in Boston and is very posh and even has a doorman. I’m not kidding – there is a guy whos job it is just to stand there and open the door for me when I come in to buy capsules. They gave me a leather RFID keychain that I tap on the counter when I make a purchase so they can keep track of my purchases.
The boutique is nice for a few reasons. First off – you don’t have to pay postage on your order. Second – you get access to new flavors before anyone. Third – free samples. Fourth – its a fun shopping experience. Fifth – you can see and buy the various machines and accessories right there.
But I digress – lets talk about the machines.
I lovely little device. It is Teflon coated for really fast easy cleanup and has 2 little whisks. One whisk is for making milk foam – which it does really well. And the other is great for making hot cocoa – which it also does well. When I am done I simply rinse it out and wipe it with a cloth. Very fast, easy and convenient.
The Nespresso machine itself:
Like the Aeroccino it is also fast, clean and convenient. Most espresso machines are 15 bars of pressure, the Nespresso is actually 19 so I usually get a nice crema on my espresso. And it tastes good.
I can’t say the same for other pod machines I’ve tried that basically make so-so coffee that you only really drink because you need a fast dose of caffeine. I am reminded of Quentin Tarantinos line in Pulp Fiction when he said \”I buy the gourmet expensive stuff because when I drink it I want to taste it.\”
The design of the machine is stylish and doesn’t take up a lot of room.
I’ve had it a few months now and no complaints.
I feel like Nespresso is trying to be the Apple of the pod coffee business. From their packaging, to their design, to their boutique stores and customer service. They do make the whole experience very enjoyable.
Yes the pods are a bit pricey when you consider how much coffee you are getting in each pod. But Nespresso isn’t selling just coffee, they are selling convenience. Is it worth a few extra cents every morning to save several minutes of effort and clean up? For me the answer is yes. And the coffee is pretty good.
As a side note – I’ve read a few articles that talk about how some of the finer restaurants in Europe are serving Nespresso. They recognize that they could serve better coffee with an expensive machine and a trained Barista but that the increase in quality isn’t enough to justify the cost in time, equipment, space and labor. I feel the same way in my own kitchen.
Nespresso U (By LouiseinWA)
I have had my Nespresso U for approximately two weeks now. I know at least three other owners who rave about theirs. We all have different machines. I also own a Keurig B170 which is great for filter coffee and hot water for tea. But back to the Nespresso U.
This is a very easy to use machine, well designed and fits into my small kitchen perfectly. Capsules are easy to use and can be recycled. You might think at $0.60 they are a tad spendy but if you compare them to Starbucks new machine capsules they are not and there is more variety. I got the bundle so I have the milk frother, love it!! Fabulous for coffee and hot chocolate.
What about the capsules you might ask. Well you cannot buy them in any store so you don’t, you get them at a boutique – very few in N America – or online which my guess is where most owners purchase theirs. I ordered some capsules on Friday morning with 2 day delivery so was kind of expecting a Monday delivery but no, I received them today and Fedex just dropped them off today (Saturday pm) just over 24 hours from placing my order. I have questioned them about having free shipping as I suspect most of us order a significant amount when we do. They responded very quickly, their capsules are shipped from Switzerland ( this is a Nestle product) they have to cover the cost.
So in short the Nespresso U makes great coffee, it is not overpriced for a capsule machine, very prompt customer service in fact if yours breaks they will send you a loaner while they repair yours. If you buy one be sure to register it and take advantage of the first time buyers capsule deal. This coffee maker may not be for everyone but I am glad I bought mine.