February 8, 2023

Coffee Ordering

Devoted To Marvelous Coffee

The 5 Best Nespresso Machines

It’s 2023, and even though it’s only January, we’re all tired. Nobody wants to spend months learning to make sourdough anymore, because that great bakery in the neighborhood has a killer bread subscription (and 2020 was literally three years ago); we’re over making over-embellished charcuterie boards (or worse, [cough], butter boards), because we’ve realized that when we need a snack, some hummus and tinned fish will work just fine. It’s time to uncomplicate life and manifest ~*ease*~ and ~*joy*~, people. Alas, nothing feels more lit right now than getting hot, tasty espresso at the press of a button. When it comes to our coffee routine, we’re truly ready for pod life. 

Now, if you read the word “Nespresso” and made a face or an audible noise, it’s time to log off and take your snobby ass down the street for $7 pour-over using single origin beans from Ethiopia or whatever. For the rest of us normals, easy, home-brewed java is dead center on our ‘23 mood board. In case you’ve missed the slew of celebrity-filled commercials, Nespresso is a pod-based line of espresso machines that makes preparing a fresh boost feel as easy as Vin Diesel smashing that NOS button. You don’t have to grind or measure beans, or learn how to pull the perfect shot; you simply toss a capsule into one of its shiny gadgets, press a button, and moments later, you’re the proud sipper of a (pretty damn decent) espresso, Americano, or cappuccino. The company partners with different makers like Breville and De’Longhi to produce two main product lines: Vertuo and Original. The Vertuo is the more bougie option, offering latte options and many sizes—from single espressos to big ol’ cups of joe—and letting you skip all the math and labor that goes into getting a nice pour over or French press in your own home. The Original series, on the other hand, is more purely for lovers of espresso and haters of all that other jazz (though some can do cappuccinos and other feats of hot bean juice wizardry). Here are some of our favorite options when it comes to the best Nespresso machines.

Vertuo Next Coffee and Espresso Machine

You can get started on your Nespresso journey for about 150 bucks, with the functional but frill-free Vertuo Next machine, made in partnership with Breville. The Vertuo Next has all the classic Vertuo accoutrements: a removable water tank, auto-eject capsules, and even a slim design (because you don’t have unlimited counter space). It has almost 10,000 reviews on Amazon with a 4.3 out of 5 star average. One reviewer said: “As someone who works from home, the Vertuo line is brilliant. The coffee pods, despite being a little pricey, are still significantly cheaper than going to buy a latte at the local coffee shop. Cleanup is a breeze, and the coffee tastes great.” Take that, local coffee shop™!

$179.95$162.75 at Amazon

Lattissima Touch Espresso Machine with Milk Frother

This one’s for the fancy coffee drink addicts. For 2023, getting a bougie, expensive latte at the corner cafe is out; getting it directly from your kitchen is in. The Lattissima Touch harnesses avant garde technology that uses a genie to capture the spirits of real baristas, channeling them into the Lattissima (that’s how we see it, at least). A one-touch system lets you instantly order a hot, velvety latte or cappuccino in seconds. Half a dozen recipes and endless flavors are available. (Nota bene, exorcists: There are not actually spirits in this coffee machine.)

$529$454.48 at Amazon

VertuoPlus Coffee and Espresso Machine

Another affordable option, the VertuoPlus—a favorite of many—offers four different cup sizes and a more economical package (plus, it heats up in just 25 seconds), but it doesn’t seem to sacrifice quality. Case in point: This model helped one reviewer overcome their addiction to chain coffee, which for under $200 is a pretty incredible achievement. “I don’t even feel the desire to get coffee from chains anymore and I had a *serious* problem with that,” they wrote. “Like a ‘set aside funds in the budget for St*rbucks’ level problem, lol.”

$199$127 at Amazon

Essenza Mini Espresso Machine

I’m not a scholar of Italian literature (though I have read the entire Divine Comedy—please clap), but I predict that “essenza” means “essence.” It’s the perfect description of this simple little espresso machine, which has just two cup sizes and focuses pointedly on doing one thing well: pulling a perfect espresso shot in seconds. If you’re a stoic soul who likes a minimalist black design and needs nothing more than a basic, no-frills espresso, this is the Nespresso machine for you. “Don’t let its diminutive size scare you,” reads the top Amazon review. “It’s so small you can leave it on the counter or conveniently store it and effortlessly use it daily with wonderful simplicity. Everything about this machine is FANTASTICO—ease of use, simplicity of cleaning, and no maintenance whatsoever.” Good—the less maintenance, the better.

$179.95$164.18 at Amazon

Creatista Plus

While a bit more of an investment, the Creatista Plus is a whole different class of Nespresso machine. With an integrated milk frother and three programmable coffee selections to create “the perfect ristretto, espresso or lungo,” this handsome model lets you heat and froth your own milk and even drizzle fancy little designs into your foam, making *you* into the barista. The Creatista Plus’ advertising campaign asks: “Why make coffee when you can create art?” We respond: Why not do both, like the great writer Balzac, who wrote Lost Illusions AND reportedly drank 50 cups of coffee a day (which some argue contributed to his untimely death, so maybe don’t have that much)? If you want a Nespresso machine that still feels high-end and worthy of a fancy bistro, the Creatista delivers.

$649.95$539.99 at Amazon

*Penelope Cruz voice* Nespresso.

The Rec Room staff independently selected all of the stuff featured in this story. Want more reviews, recommendations, and red-hot deals? Sign up for our newsletter.