Review: Krups Nescafe Dolce Gusto Single Serve Coffee Maker
There's a new single serve coffee coffee and hot beverage system in town - the Krups Nescafe Dolce Gusto. This amazing machine not only makes a perfect cup of single serve coffee, it can also make lattes, cappuccinos, shots of espresso, chococinos (hot chocolate), and even iced cappuccinos. And not only does it make an amazing range of drinks, this is one of the first single serve coffee makers to have a "round water reservoir", and to also look truly different than any other single serve coffee maker we've seen. The unique styling puts it on a path of it's own, and it's no wonder the design is so different.
Nescafe has teamed up with Krups and Nespresso to make this machine. You can see touches of Nespresso innovation, along with truly wonderful design choices from Krups. We also had the opportunity to test both the European and the recently launched US Krups Nescafe Dolce Gusto that is now in stores in the US. The differences in the two machines show a revolution in thought on how to make the Krups Nescafe Dolce Gusto a nearly perfect single serve coffee maker, from an already successful machine designed for Europe.
Key Features of the Nescafe Dolce Gusto
We were fortunate enough to test both the US and the European versions of the Nescafe Dolce Gusto. The updates like power switch location, capsule insertion and pucturing, and the controls are much improved over the European Dolce Gusto. The US version (which is what this review covers) is truly a redesigned machine, and even though we think the redesign is truly well done and needed, we would have been happy with the European version as well after using it for a few weeks.
Unboxed and ready to go.
The chrome controls are easy to use and feel great.
The machine comes with a tall glass for latte macchiatos, and a cup and saucer for espresso and coffee based drinks. It also comes with a sampler pack of the different drinks outlined below. The packaging is really well done, and the instructions that come with the machine are also well designed and easy to follow. You can see our earlier article on Unboxing the Krups Nescafe Dolce Gusto Single Serve Coffee Maker here.
We like the design of this machine, and found using all of the controls, capsule insertion, and other features very easy to use. The water reservoir was a bit disappointing - no filter and the round shape makes it hard to fill in our filtered fridge water dispenser. But even with that one shortcoming, the coffee produced (as you see below) is excellent, so there's always a tradeoff on some features. The machine also features an auto-off unlike the European version, making this machine both safer and more eco-friendly.
The power button is also on the front. We want to say that again - the power button is on the front. If you're going to design any consumer appliance - this is the place to put it, and we love the little green glow around the edges.
Key Features include:
15-bar pressure system (similar to coffeehouse machines)
Custom Control Lever, combined with airtight capsules, makes for very fresh and perfectly extracted espresso and coffees
KRUPS® Thermoblock technology heats the water in less than one minute
All smart coffee capsules feature only 100% Arabica roast and ground coffee
Stylish and sleek design that will stand out on any kitchen counter
Drip Tray - Height adjustable with stainless steel cover for any size cups and glasses (Dishwasher Safe)
Capsule Bin - Non-Dishwasher Safe
Capsule Holder - Dishwasher Safe
Capacity of the removable water tank - 0.4 Gallons (51 fl.oz.) (Non-Dishwasher Safe)
Boiler - Aluminum Thermoblock, no pre-heating, no waiting
Coffees and Hot Beverages Available for the Krups Nescafe Dolce Gusto
There is a variety of hot beverages available for the Krups Nescafe Dolce Gusto Single Serve Coffee Maker. All of the beverages are branded under the Nescafe coffee brand, and the coffee produced is very Nespresso like in taste in quality. Also, all of the coffee produced has a very rich thick creamy crema-like frothy top. So, if you like the Senseo crema-like coffee, we think you'll like this coffee even more. The coffee produced has a very bold flavor, and there is a mild version of the Lungo coffee if you want something a little less bold.
A cafe lungo smart capsule for the Nescafe Dolce Gusto.
The smart capsule is loaded in to the front of the machine.
You then pull the lever down, and start brewing.
The brewing and pressure is built up inside. We took
this capsule apart to show you the familiar filter points
where the coffee is pushed through in the capsule.
And we always have to answer this question: Can I use my own coffee in the Nescafe Dolce Gusto? No. The Krups Nescafe Dolce Gusto uses it's own delivery system for the beverages it produces in the form of smart capsules. Each smart capsule is designed to make a perfect espresso, lungo, or latte drink (you'll need a milk and espresso capsule for these drinks). The smart capsule can not be refilled, and currently is not recyclable. If you're looking to use your own coffee, you may want to check out a Keurig or any coffee pod machine. But this inability to use your own coffee is a design choice and a beverage choice - in order to make the quality of the beverages the Krups Nescafe Dolce Gusto Single Serve Coffee Maker produces - it's necessary to have a closed system. So are the drinks excellent?
The lattes and cappuccinos produced from the Krups Nescafe Dolce Gusto are excellent. We thought with the milk being powered we'd be a bit fussy and not like the drinks - but the frothed milk is delicious. We found both drinks to be right on par with one you could purchase at our local Starbucks, and we really like the ability to dial up or down the amount of milk or espresso in each beverage. And that's one of the strengths of this machine.
A latte macchiato - our favorite from the Dolce Gusto.
Both the coffee and espresso has a creamy crema top.
Unlike the Tassimo, the Krups Nescafe Dolce Gusto is manually controlled by you. You can pull as short or as long of a shot of espresso you want. You can do something similiar on the Tassimo by stopping it earlier, and you can push the button to add more water - but it feels like you're taking over. The Krups Nescafe Dolce Gusto Single Serve Coffee Maker makes you feel like a barista. The lever at the top goes right for cold water, and left for hot water. You then push it back to the middle to stop the flow. We love the control, and we love being able to say how we want our beverages mixed each time.
There's an entire line of hot beverages available.
Drinks available for the Krups Nescafe Dolce Gusto Single Serve Coffee Maker
Cafe Lungo - smooth cup of single serve coffee
Cafe Lungo Mild - it's a bit more mild
Cafe Lungo Decafe
Cappuccino - a two disc drink and excellent
Cappuccino Ice - Decent iced drink
Chocococino - hot chocolate
Espresso - excellent Nespresso like flavor
Latte Macchiato - a two disc drink and our favorite - buttery and yummy
Pros and Cons of the Krups Nescafe Dolce Gusto Single Serve Coffee Maker
Heats up quickly
All the beverages the machine produces we really like - some we love
Insertion of the smart capsules into the machine is easy
Controls are easy to use and are made out of high quality metal - great feel
Both cold and hot water brewing options are available for all drinks
Really solid milk flavor and taste in all milk based drinks
Bin for used smart coffee capsules can get messy and full quickly
Limited amount of coffee flavors and blends available
No water filter - for the price we'd expect a water filter in the reservoir
Water reservoir is hard to fill in our fridge filtered water dispenser
The machine is priced about $30 more than the Tassimo Hot beverage system for similar functionality
We really like the Krups Nescafe Dolce Gusto, and think if you want the ability to make a full range of hot beverages like lattes and cappuccinos along with your morning cup of single serve coffee, this machine is for you. We love the bold design, and the reddish color of the machine is also really striking.
How's that for a perfect shot of espresso?
One of the things we'd like to reiterate - we really love all of the hot beverages this machine produces, and you can also mix and match any of the coffee capsules, milks, and chocolate to make a variety of other drinks not marketed directly - like Chocolate Latte Macchiatos. Given this flexibility, and the excellent quality of the beverages produced, the $169.99 for the machine seems almost too low. Pricing for the smart capsules is $8.49 per box of 16 smart coffee capsules.
AO: Any idea if this is a conical or a disc read more betty: we just bought the t47 after returning our 3rd machine read more cas lencheski rn: What a terrible product...I bought this at our local food read more Izepp: Which single serve Nespresso machine can take refillable pods? What read more Rik Crosby: $2/cup is hardly "a few cents more" than other kcups. read more