Speedy drink preparation
High-quality coffee and espresso beverages
Beautiful, compact design
Includes 12 coffee capsules
Must use Vertuo coffee capsules
Coffee is on the stronger side
Makes only individual cups
We purchased the Nespresso VertuoLine so our reviewer could put it to the test in her kitchen. Keep reading for our full product review.
If you have family members who love their coffee and others who love their lattes and cappuccinos, you’re going to want a coffee and espresso machine combo that lets you make both while saving both time and space. We tested out the very popular Nespresso VertuoLine and Aeroccino3 Milk Frother, taking a close look at its overall design, coffee flavor, ease of use, cleanup, and price. Keep reading to get our take on this multi-purpose kitchen appliance.
Setup Process: Takes about 10 minutes, very simple
The setup for the Nespresso Vertuo is simple and fast. The user manual advises cleaning the water tank before filling it with fresh water for the first time. A middle button on the coffee head turns the machine on. The entire cleaning process took about 10 minutes.
This machine also comes with the Aeroccino3 milk frother, which also needs to be cleaned by hand before using it for the first time. This includes the lid, seal, whisk, mixer (for hot milk), frothing spring (for milk froth), and the interior of the milk frother.
Design: Compact, flawless design
The Nespresso Vertuo is beautifully designed. We bought it in chrome, which complements the rest of our kitchen appliances perfectly, but it also comes in titanium, red, black, and black matte. It looks both modern and sleek, yet still maintains a uniqueness that fits the Nespresso brand. The Aeroccino3 milk frother matches the main unit perfectly.
Besides its look, we also loved how compact this machine is, measuring 8.32 x 11.91 x 11.93 inches. We found that it didn’t take up much counter space at all, which was convenient as many espresso machines tend to take up a lot of room. The separate milk frother is also compact (3.5 x 6.7 inches) and can easily fit right beside the main unit. Due to its small size, this machine is designed to make one coffee beverage at a time. Since we don’t have a large household, a single-serve brewer has worked out well for our purposes.
One inconvenient feature of the Nespresso Vertuo is that the user must purchase Vertuo capsules in order to use this machine. Other Nespresso capsules will not work with this machine, so the user has to be diligent in purchasing the right kind of capsules. And because they are so niche, the user will likely need to purchase the capsules online, as many stores don't carry them yet.
The Nespresso heats up in only 15 seconds, which is extremely fast.
Performance: Speedy, strong, and superb
Once the machine and the milk frother have been properly cleaned, both are ready for use. To brew a cup of coffee, we turned the machine on and waited for the machine to heat up, which takes only 15 seconds. In the coffee-making realm, this is extremely fast and one of the machine’s most impressive features. Then, we placed a Nespresso Vertuo capsule into the head, closed the machine, and locked it by turning the lever to the left.
The type of capsule used will determine the appropriate cup size: a 1.35-ounce espresso, 2.7-ounce double espresso, 5-ounce Gran Lungo, 8-ounce coffee, or 14-ounce Alto. The cup support/drip grid, located at the base of the machine, has three positions to accommodate the various cup sizes.
We found the espresso shots to be superb. The Nespresso Vertuo uses barcode-scanning technology, reading the rings on the capsules and adjusting water volume, temperature, flow rate, water contact time, and rotational speed. This created a quality shot of espresso each time with a perfect crema on top, quite comparable to what a traditional espresso machine would pull. As for the coffee, it tastes more like espresso than drip coffee and is, therefore, a lot stronger than that of a standard coffee maker. However, we enjoy strong coffee, so it worked out well for us.
The process for making coffee and espresso is the same, but for lattes and cappuccinos, you also need to make frothed milk. To use the frother, we filled the milk frother to one of the “max” levels. Next, we placed the lid on the Aeroccino and pressed the button (the only button) to start. It takes about a minute and a half to complete the process. To make cold milk froth, press the button and hold for two seconds.
Ease of Cleaning: Low maintenance
This machine is fairly low maintenance. The guide leaves it up to users to decide how often they want to thoroughly clean (the process is the same as what’s required at setup). The milk frother requires a little more attention and must be cleaned after each use, but we found it easy enough to do.
There is also a disposal or capsule container located on the right side of the unit that collects the used Nespresso Vertuo coffee capsules. This can be removed from the machine and emptied into the trash once full. We found this to be a very convenient feature because we didn’t have to dispose of the old capsule each time we used the machine. It doesn’t seem like much, but we found that it saved a step, making coffee prep that much quicker. A descaling alert will let users know when that needs to be done; Nespresso sells descaling kits separately.
For a great price, you get a return of high-quality espresso beverages, quick prep and cleanup, and a compact machine that takes up little counter space.
Price: A bargain
The manufacturer lists the Nespresso VertuoLine and Aeroccino3 Milk Frother at $249, though it’s available at other retailers for much less. Regardless, we think it’s a great deal for such a top-performing coffee and espresso machine combo, considering how easy it is to use, how quick the process is, and how excellent the coffee tastes. Plus, depending on the retailer and the bundle you buy, capsules may be included. Our unit came with a set of 12 Vertuo coffee capsules, which amounts to a value of between $15 and $20.
Nespresso VertuoLine vs. Keurig K-Café
The Keurig K-Café Single Serve Coffee, Latte & Cappuccino Maker is another top performer we tested. This coffee unit retails for around $200 and offers a very similar experience. The biggest difference is in the return for your money and the speed of preparation. The Nespresso VertuoLine bundle we bought included a box of capsules to use with the machine, whereas the Keurig does not include any K-Cup pods.
The other difference is that the Keurig heats up in three minutes, while the Nespresso heats up in only 15 seconds, which is a pretty significant difference. The two machines are otherwise closely matched in their offerings including coffee quality, unit size, and quick setup and cleanup. We’d opt for the Nespresso VertuoLine and Aeroccino3 Milk Frother because you get more for your money.
The Nespresso VertuoLine with Aeroccino3 Milk Frother is absolutely worth buying if you’re in the market for a coffee and espresso machine combo. For a great price, you get a return of high-quality beverages, quick prep and cleanup, and a compact machine that takes up little counter space.
- Product Name VertuoLine
- Product Brand Nespresso
- Price $249
- Weight 10.85 lbs.
- Product Dimensions 8.32 x 11.91 x 11.93 in.
- Model Number GCA1
- Milk Frother Dimensions 3.5 x 6.7 in.
- Voltage 120V
- Warranty 1 year
- What’s Included Coffee machine, Aeroccino3 milk frother, Nespresso capsules box, Nespresso welcome material, and user manual (may vary by bundle)