Upgrade Your Coffee Game with a Nespresso Machine

Nespresso lovers are passionate about their coffee and devoted to the machines themselves. That’s hardly surprising considering the presence of Nespresso coffee in 81 countries and a growing share of American coffee-pod aficionados turning to innovative Nespresso machines. That said, there can be a bit of confusion over the two different types of Nespresso pod machines known as the “Original” line and the newer Vertuo line. The intent (as well as the technology) differs considerably, with one reigning as the best choice for brewed coffee.

Original Nespresso machines — still sold and fully supported — were designed to be espresso machines. They continue to deliver traditional espresso and cappuccino drinks with a single button touch and plenty of coffee blends. However, it’s the Vertuo line of machines and pods that really excel in producing brewed coffees. The technology in Nespresso Vertuo machines provides a wide array of options for brewing, with the ability to choose five cup sizes ranging from 1.35 ounces all the way up to 18 ounces. This allows more control over the strength of the brew and the taste in your cup. 

Each Vertuo machine model comes with individual features, but they all operate on Centrifusion technology for maximized brewed coffees. The correlating pods come with bar-coded rims that relay information when activated, rotating at speeds up to 7000 RPM. Depending on the chosen coffee pod, the machine adjusts water volume, flow rate, temperature, and infusion time, all resulting in a customized cup of brewed coffee.

Choosing the best Vertuo pods and machines for brewed coffee

Nespresso Vivida drink and pods

Nespresso Vertuo machines also naturally produce a rich, velvety crema with every brew and any size, not just with espresso drinks. There’s no dairy involved, just a natural layer of dense, creamy foam that occurs during extraction. This happens regardless of which coffee blend you choose, numbering more than 30 options as well as varying limited-edition pods. 

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To achieve the best brewed coffee from Vertuo machines, pay attention to the pod descriptions. Some carry designations of espresso, double expresso, or ristretto, which provide super concentrated drinks. For something more closely resembling standard brewed coffee, look for full-bodied blends labeled as 7.77 ounces. Some good bets include Stormio, Odacio, and Intenso, as well as some single-origin blends and three “coffee+” options with extra caffeine. You’ll also find decaf and half-caf offerings in this size. If you’d like a slightly stronger cup of coffee, similar to an Americano, try the Gran Lugo with roughly five ounces. 

Vertuo machines themselves have evolved over the years, with seven models now available directly from Nespresso. You’ll likely find older models still circulating amongst other retailers. The priciest one, a stainless steel beauty called Vertuo Creatista, arguably gives you the most leeway for brewed coffee. It accepts 12-ounce XL coffee pods and brews up to 18 ounces for carafe-sized sharing. If you’re a Starbucks devotee, you can also enjoy Starbucks by Nespresso Vertuo pods in the 7.7-ounce size for brewed coffee.  

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