My full Nespresso Essenza Plus Review!
Good morning, friends. Let’s talk NESPRESSO! To be honest, this post has been on my to-do list for a long time… anyone else notice the pumpkin on the counter?! 🙈 Truthfully, my other Thanksgiving and Holiday deadlines have been overwhelming me, so I kept putting this off. But now that cyber sales and gift guides are behind us, I’m ready to give you my full (and unsponsored) review of my Nespresso Essenza Plus!
Nespresso Essenza Plus Review
If you have been considering getting a Nespresso, you’ve probably noticed that they have two different lines of capsule-based espresso machines – Original and Vertuo. The biggest difference between the two is that the Original line offers traditional espresso servings, whereas you can get a wider range of coffee sizes (all the way up to 18oz) with the Vertuo line. I went with an Original machine because my cousin (who gifted it to us for our eventual wedding 🙏😂) explained that she likes the way the Original machines are made better. Their high pressure pump produces more authentic espresso. On top of that, they also have less expensive capsules AND you can find less expensive third-party capsules, too.
I’ll dive into more of those details in this post, but honestly, I think I’d love a Vertuo machine just as much as the one I have. Either way, it’s just so nice to have a completely automated coffee machine, especially since I’m the only one who makes coffee in the mornings! (Adam doesn’t drink it. Weird, I know!) Instead of measuring out coffee grounds and waiting for it to brew, I can pop a capsule in, press a button, and I have a perfect cup within seconds every time. It’s pretty awesome. I’m not sure why I resisted it for so long!
Nespresso Essenza Plus Pros
I looooove how small this machine is. In fact, when I unpacked it, Adam said “wait, that’s IT?!” I think he was worried an espresso machine meant a big monstrosity on our countertop 😂 This one is only 5.3″ x 16.5″ x 9.4″ – and it looks really sleek. I also like that, despite being small, it can still hold 33.8 oz of water in the removable water tank and there is a handy drip tray to avoid any mess.
I mean, what is more convenient than putting a pod in, pressing a button, and waiting a few seconds. It’s literally the easiest thing in the world! The capsule container holds up to 11 capsules, and then I just transfer those to my recycling bin when it gets full (until I’m ready to ship them!).
4 Coffee Sizes
On the machine itself, you’ll see the espresso lungo and hot water buttons. That being said, if you press the espresso and hot water button at the same time, you’ll make an americano. And if you press the lungo and hot water buttons at the same time, you’ll get an americano XL! You can also program the americanos to your liking too… but I found the factory settings to work just fine for me!
This machine automatically powers off after 9 minutes… so no need to panic or get nervous that you forgot to turn it off before leaving the house. You’re all set.
I think we all know that we should descale our machines, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that we’re always good about it. Luckily, this machine has a descaling alert so you can easily remember to keep it in tip top shape.
Honestly, every single cup has been outstanding. Apparently that has something to do with the pump pressure – they have made this machine to produce authentic tasting espresso every time.
Less Expensive Capsules
While the Essenza Plus is more expensive than some of the Vertuo models, their capsules are actually less expensive! So if you’re okay with spending a little bit more up front, your cost-per-cup will be less.
Third Party Capsules
In addition to the brand name Nespresso capsules, you can also look for even less expensive third party capsules that are compatible! Once I’m done with the ones I have, I want to try out a few biodegradable/recycle-able brands since that’s an option! (If you have a Vertuo machine, the only compatible capsules are made by Nespresso.)
Recycling Program and Sustainability
I know it might seem like pre-portioned coffee pods are terrible for the environment… but I’m actually super impressed with Nespresso’s sustainability efforts. First off, they have a really awesome and convenient recycling program. All you have to do is collect all of your used capsules in a pre-paid and pre-addressed bag that they provide for you. You can either put that in the mail when it’s full, or drop it off at your nearest collection point or Nespresso store.
In addition, their machines use only the precise amount of coffee, water, and energy needed to brew each cup, which has helped them reduce waste, as well as reduce their carbon footprint by almost 20% since 2009. They also partner with a ton of amazing organizations, including the Rainforest Alliance!
Nespresso Essenza Plus Cons
No Coffee Option/Size
The main reason I was considering a Vertuo machine is because you can make both coffee and espresso. Turns out, I don’t really care which one it is as long as I’m getting a delicious mug of caffeine each morning 😂 Especially if I can pair it with freshly frothed milk! That being said, if you don’t like lattes/cappuccinos and you’d rather have black coffee – the Vertuo line might be better for you so you can brew up to 17 oz of coffee vs. just a small espresso or americano.
If you’ve seen someone on Instagram drinking their Nespresso with a thick layer of crema on top… that’s not from my machine. I know, it’s so tempting! I want to try it, too! That being said, I have an awesome milk frother (another wedding gift!), that allows me to add warm frothy milk to every cup I make within seconds.
No Reusable Option
While I’ve found a few recyclable/biodegradable options (I’m curious about Pods & Parcel and Real Good Coffee Co), I haven’t found a reusable option yet. These reusable capsules say that they work with MOST Nespresso machines… but that makes me a little nervous. I wish Nespresso would make one specifically for each machine!
Product Line: OriginalLine
Dimensions: 5.3 x 16.5 x 9.4 in
Weight: 7.9 pounds
Brew Sizes: Espresso Espresso (1.35 oz), Lungo ( 3.7 oz ), Americano (4.2 oz), Americano XL (5.4 oz)
Water Reservoir Size: 33.8 oz
Pressure: 19 Bars
Used Capsule Container Capacity: 11
Power Rating: 1260 watts
Automatic OFF after 9. minutes
My Nespresso Essenza Plus Review
Just in case you haven’t already caught on, I love my Nespresso Essenza Plus. To give you a little backstory, I had a Keurig a few years ago that I wasn’t thrilled with. Then I got a tiny little Amazon drip coffee machine because Adam doesn’t drink coffee and I figured I’d register for a nicer one eventually. Then we moved into our current place and my coffee machine started to die… and I realized that maybe it’s time for an upgrade.
If I was married to a coffee addict, or I frequently entertain lots of people, that’s a different story. But in our pandemic life where I’m the only one brewing coffee in the morning, this is literally perfect. It’s incredibly easy to use, the coffee comes out perfect every time, it’s sleek and doesn’t take up much room on my counter, and I can recycle the capsules! All wins!
My only advice is to make sure you get a milk frother in addition to the Essenza Plus if you like to make lattes and cappuccinos. These two gadgets are both great on their own, but morning magic when you bring them together. They’re the only reason why I don’t mind getting up before the sun with Luna 😂
My Favorite Capsules
While I’m not a total expert yet, I have tried a bunch of different capsules and I have a few favorites! My #1 is definitely Vanilla Eclair – it’s smooth and subtle and sooooo delicious. I also really love Genova Livanto, Firenze Arpeggio, and Fortissio Lungo. And because I couldn’t resist, I got a sleeve of the Williams Sonoma Peppermint Bark flavor this week and it’s DELICIOUS. Add some Peppermint Mocha Nutpods to it and it’s the perfect treat – without any sugar!