Nespresso has been gaining momentum since its inception.
A big reason for that is thought to be the constant updates surrounding their products. So we thought that comparing the original product line to the new and improved Vertuoline would be worthwhile.
Let’s explore the mainstay lines of Nespresso and determine whether hitting the used section of eBay will prove worthwhile or if you really are in need of the new wave of Nespresso.
Since Nespresso makes two lines of coffee machines, OriginalLine which brews espresso drinks only and VertuoLine which brews both espresso and coffee, we’ll discuss the merits of each and find out what matches your morning coffee needs. Each line requires different capsules so it’s important to note that when you buy a Nespresso machine you aren’t just buying the machine, you’re also buying into a specific line of Nespresso capsules that create an arguably different drink.
If you’re interested in pursuing the flavors in these capsules but don’t have the patience for Nespresso, there are alternative machines that will brew with capsules.
The Nespresso Experience
Nespresso coffee makers are a useful way to make serious espresso on the fly. Think of them as a Keurig but for the most decadent of espresso pulls.
One major benefit to these machines is that you won’t find yourself standing in line at the local cafe either. The Nespresso VertuoLine range of coffee and espresso makers create drinks that might even rival your average espresso at the chain coffee place down the street.
The VertuoLine is the first Nespresso machine capable of brewing both American coffee and Italian espresso.
Before you commit to a machine make sure you know the pros and cons of each system. Here are some of the very most important factors that influence these machines.
The initial plan is to save money and time by avoiding the cafe, so now we have to make a cost analysis. While many of the countertop single serve brewers seem to be cost-effective, now the Nespresso is on trial.
First, if you plan to drink mostly espresso base drinks expect to pay up to twenty percent more for the same coffee with a VertuoLine machine. So take that into consideration.
Twenty percent will certainly add up over time. The benefit of paying, in this case, is that you’re able to brew both espresso and Nespresso coffee. Furthermore, the difference is more than fifty percent if you take into account the fact that VertuoLine is a closed system meaning you can only buy VertuoLine capsules from Nespresso. This is one aspect of the pod systems that Keurig has managed to avoid.
One huge factor with Vertuoline is that Nespresso uses a barcode system on each pod that informs the machine how much water to use and how hot the water should be. This allows for some incredibly accurate espresso. Coffee nerds rejoice!
On the flip side, this also makes it a lot harder for third-party manufacturers to make their own pods. You’re kind of stuck using the original Nespresso pods, which can be quite pricey.
Variety of Capsules
VertuoLine Capsules are solely available from Nespresso, though that is likely to change in the near future. The OriginalLine capsules, however, are available from Nespresso as well as hundreds of other vendors worldwide. You’re likely to find the OriginalLine capsule for a deal somewhere.
The selection of capsule for VertuoLine is minuscule at best compared to the OriginalLine capsules produced by not only Nespresso but also other third-party companies. It almost seems like a new company enters the Nespresso compatible maker every day with a new line of alternative capsules.
Nespresso’s approach with the VertuoLine is very similar to the approach taken by Keurig Green Mountain’s Brewer 2.0 after the public was disenchanted with the 2.0’s new technology to lock out “unauthorized” single-serve coffee pods – in other word, pods from companies without a licensing deal with Keurig. From this perspective alone it’s no wonder most consumers are sticking to the OriginalLine over VertuoLine even when Nespresso is trying to sell these machines for a very affordable rate compared to some of the espresso machines on the market now.
Differences in Taste
The two ways that the VertuoLine and Original Line machines brew the grounds makes all the difference in taste. It’s a matter of the Nespresso brewing process that makes for a very specific coffee product.
One major issue with VertuoLine is that the temperature used is a bit lower than the temperature used in Original Line which is using pressure, not centrifugal force. Because the temperature is lower, the number of oils and essence(read: flavors) extracted from the grounds will be less. The result is a sometimes milder coffee. OriginalLine machines make a stronger, hotter coffee.
Another difference is that there is a lot more crema and foam on the Vertuoline brew than there is on OriginalLine.
Many coffee experts are left wondering why Nescafe would purposefully make a machine that made less concentrated or strong coffee and market it as something new.
The answer is that the Vertuoline machines are marketed towards coffee connoisseurs that are simply searching for crema solely. Original Line machines are marketed towards those who prefer the straight-up taste of espresso.
Though you may find, according to some people, that VertuoLine crema is in fact just a foam byproduct of the brewing process, and Original Line crema is actually better and more authentic. The VertuoLine crema is often compared to the head off foam in the Keurig brewing process, but we will let you be the judge of that. You might also be wondering what the difference is when comparing the crema of a Nespresso drink to a French press.
We all know about the damage the Keurig K-cups were known to cause for years and years on end before the secret to recycling became a more prominent practice.
However, unlike Keurig which has been offering its fair share of organic K-cups, VertuoLine capsules aren’t organic verified. If you purchase a VertuoLine machine and want organic coffee you are simply out of luck. At the time of this writing, there are more than ten third-party companies producing organic capsules for Nespresso OriginalLine machines worldwide.
According to a Forbes article, however, there have been steps taken by the company and other entrepreneurs to make use of the Nespresso capsules, one company even created pens out of the waste that the capsules have created.
How to Clean Your Nespresso Machine
Nespresso recommends that you descale your machine approximately every three months. But if you use your machine often and want to ensure that it is always producing the best flavor, it is recommended that you descale it after every three hundred brewing sessions.
For those that can’t keep track, the VertuoLine has an interesting feature that may aid you in maintenance and help your decision making. The VertuoLine brewers are equipped with a light that blinks to alert you that the machine needs to be descaled. Or simply give it a visual and determine that it’s time for some hygiene.
Cleaning your pod-based or capsule brewing systems are important to the lifespan and performance of the machine. So make sure that you take the steps needed toward ensuring these tasks are taken care of in order to protect your investment. Also, to ensure your morning coffee turns out spectacular.
Once you have your descaling kit, you’ll need to prepare your machine. The descaling process may vary slightly by model, but the first step is the same across the board:
- First, empty the capsule container and make sure there are no used capsules left in the machine.
- Put the proper amount of fresh water into your water container and mix in the descaling solution. You can find out how much water your specific machine requires in the user guide or on the Nespresso website.
- Place a container that holds up to a liter of water under the coffee spout, then turn the machine on.
- To start the descaling process, you will need to press one or more buttons, depending on the model you own. For the VertuoLine, hold the singular button for at least seven seconds.
The descaling process will now start and take about ten minutes. With certain machines, you’ll need to refill the water tank with the used solution afterward and repeat the process. Once your machine runs its cycle, rinse the water container and pour fresh water into it. Then, run the cycle again for another ten minutes without the descaling solution in the water.
To exit the descaling mode, press the same buttons you pressed to start it again. Let your Nespresso machine dry for 10 minutes before use.
Which One Is Better?
As you can see, the OriginalLine has a lot more flavors right now. Nespresso may or may not add more flavors to the Vertuoline to make it more appealing to a wider audience. There is also a VertuoPlus line of Nespresso brewers that we have reviewed as well.
I think, at the end of the day, the difference boils down to:
If you’re a coffee purist that wants authentic espresso and coffee, stick with OriginalLine. The coffee is stronger, hotter, and more intense all around. If you’re an adventurer and like lots of foamy crema, then give VertuoLine a shot, and be glad that you did. Overall these are two furiously competitive designs for Nespresso and they aren’t going anywhere. If you liked what you read, learn more about coffee gear on our blog.