In recent years the convenience of the pod coffee machine has meant these appliances have become extremely popular. Glossy TV ads featuring A List celebrities have given even more gravitas to the coffee pod revolution. Now, more and more people are coming to realise that a capsule coffee machine offers them a viable way to make a decent cup of coffee without really having to lift a finger.
This is hugely attractive to coffee lovers with a busy lifestyle but when it comes to choosing a pod coffee machine, you’re confronted with a plethora of options. There are so many big-name brands out there making machines and a host of smaller companies producing pods.
Two high profile brands are Nespresso and Lavazza. While Nespresso was the first brand to release a pod machine, others have followed in its footsteps and consumers now have a difficult decision to make. Which is best, Lavazza or Nespresso? Let’s find out.
An introduction to Lavazza and Nespresso coffee machines
You could be forgiven for thinking that the Nespresso and Lavazza machines are two entirely different systems. So, it may come as a surprise to learn that they’re the exact same invention marketed under different names.
IN the mid-1970s, a Swiss engineer by the name of Eric Favre patented his Nespresso system after he joined the Nestle company. Nestle snapped up the opportunity to retail the machine but at the start of the 90s, Favre left and began his own brand using the same patent.
The only difference was that this version of the system didn’t need aluminium components and Favre went on to market the concept with several other companies including Lavazza. What this means is that, while there are some differences between the two brands, the coffee machines are based on the same principles so whichever you choose, you’re going to be getting a similar but not identical cup of coffee. That being said there are still key differences between the brands.
Nespresso pod coffee machines
Nespresso has two different types of coffee pod machine: the Original and the Vertuo. One of the biggest irks for many coffee fans about the Vertuo is that this machine uses pods which are patented to the brand. This means that you can only use Nespresso pods which can work out to be pricier. That said, the Vertuo offers a greater selection of drinks including full cup and long drinks.
On the other hand, the Original machine uses pods that are not patented by Nespresso and many other manufacturers have jumped on the bandwagon. This means that you can access a wider range of capsules, often at cheaper prices. Typically, the Original is better for people who want to make espresso-based drinks.
The two types of Nespresso pod coffee machines can cause some confusion. To help we’ve compiled a comparison guide on the Vertuo and Original machines. You can read it here.
Lavazza pod coffee machines
Lavazza’s range of coffee pod machines is called the A Mio Modo collection and there are several models within this, depending on what you are looking for. These machines are based around size with the Tiny machine being favoured by those who want a compact design that doesn’t compromise on quality. It produces tasty espresso drinks quickly and easily.
The Jolie is an even smaller design and is one of the most popular Lavazza machines. It is also the quietest machine from Lavazza and comes in a bright colour so is just as stylish as it is convenient.
Lavazza also makes a range of other coffee machines including an amazing espresso machine with built-in Alexa. And some of their best selling machines come with an integrated Lavazza milk frother.
Lavazza vs Nespresso pod coffee machine reviews
In our at a glance table you’ll see how each brand’s machines compare against one another. You can find an overview of each appliance below the table.
Lavazza A Modo Mio Jolie & Milk Coffee Machine
- Integrated milk frother.
- Stylish design.
- Quiet operation.
- Slow coffee extraction to maxmise flavour.
- Choice between espresso or lungo.
- Used capsules drawer.
- Ready to use in 35 seconds.
- Adjustable cup rack.
With an integrated milk frother for that classic cappuccino or latte taste, a stylish design that will match any kitchen decor, and operation so quiet you’ll never hear it.
This is one coffee machine that’ll be worth every penny. Choose between espresso or lungo coffee with slow extraction for maximum flavour- it even has adjustable cup height when you want a long coffee.
The Jolie milk and coffee machine is super stylish and very easy to use. Select “espresso” to enjoy a single shot of intense flavour, or opt for “lungo” for a longer caffeine fix.
The integrated milk frother automatically whips up creamy foam making it easier to make your favourite latte.
You can read our full review here.Check latest price on Amazon.
Lavazza A Modo Mio Tiny Espresso Coffee Machine
- Super small and compact.
- Single button operation.
- Compatible with Lavazza a Modo Mio capsules.
- Ready to use in 25 seconds.
- Dispenses single shots of espresso.
It’s super small and compact making it perfect for smaller spaces or coffee lovers who like the minimalist look.
But, while it may be small, this coffee machine punches way above its weight.
Compatible with the wide range of Lavazza a Modo Mio capsules this machine is siper easy to use. A single button controls everything and in under a minute you’ll have a wonderful shot of espresso.
Drink it ‘neat’ or use your freshly brewed coffee as a base for a whole range of drinks.
You can learn more on using an espresso base to make cappuccino and other frothy coffees on our milk frother recipes page.
If you’re looking for an espresso maker this is a fantastic choice. It’s excellent value for money and as it uses Lavazza pods you know you’re going to get a great tasting cup of coffee.Check latest price on Amazon.
Nespresso by Krups Essenza Mini Coffee Machine with Aeroccino
- Ultra-compact design.
- Two preset options – espresso or lungo.
- 19-bar high-pressure pump.
- Ready in just 25 seconds.
- Built-in Aeroccino milk frother.
- Free capsule recycling.
The perfect compact machine for small spaces, the Essenza Mini gets you espresso in just 25 seconds. The 19-bar high-pressure pump forces out intense espresso or lungo and the integrated Nespresso milk frother means you can create any number of delicious frothy coffees.
Imagine sipping a steamed milk cappuccino with no more preparation than slotting a capsule into the machine and pressing a single button.
You can choose to brew a lungo or an espresso, both made in under one minute and with 19-bar high-pressure pump technology.
Even more impressive is how compact this coffee machine is—it can be tucked away almost anywhere without taking up too much space.
The Essenza Mini Coffee Machine can make anything from a traditional espresso to a longer coffee fast and easily – perfect for any on-the-go lifestyle.
And with free recycling from Nespresso it ticks even more boxes.Check latest price on Amazon.
Lavazza A Modo Mio Deséa Espresso Coffee Machine
- One touch functionality.
- Preset barista drinks.
- Five milk-based coffees or four different sizes all with one touch.
- Espresso to cappuccino at the press of a button.
- Super super user interface.
- Large 1.1 litre tank.
- Four capsule drawer.
With single-touch functionality, you can choose from so many different types of coffees – five milk-based specialty coffees or four sizes.
Simple one touch operation and brewing process will have those delicious drinks being served in no time at all!
The large 1.1 litre tank means this machine will cope no matter how many family or guests you have around.
The pre-set barista drinks will help you filter through the classics with ease.
Testing that caffeine tolerance? Choose an espresso shot for a quick pick me up or as base for any number of frothy coffees.Check latest price on Amazon.
Nespresso Vertuo Plus 11387 Coffee Machine with Milk Frother
- Five coffee sizes, Alto, Mug, Gran Lungo, Double Espresso, and Espresso.
- Perfect coffee every time.
- One touch operation.
- Automatic capsule ejection.
- Huge 1.8 litre capacity.
- Integrated Aeroccino milk frother.
- Ready in just 40 seconds.
This countertop beauty is perfect for starting your morning with a divine brew, or getting caffeinated quickly.
The Nespresso Vertuo Plus 11387 Coffee Machine with its integrated ilk frother has five coffee sizes so it’s easy to get the perfect amount of caffeine whether you’re craving a big mug or small espresso.
The machine also features an automatic capsule ejection button that lets you put in fresh capsules once they are spent.
If that wasn’t enough, this product will be ready to brew your favourite cup in just 40 seconds!
The water tank holds a whopping 1.8 litres so no need to refill after every cup. And that integrated Aeroccino milk frother?
You’ll have yourself some hot or cold frothed milk in just seconds allowing you to make any number of frothy coffees.Check latest price on Amazon.
Nespresso 11360 Inissia Coffee Machine with Aeroccino
- Colourful and compact design.
- Heats up in just 25 seconds.
- Choose from espresso and lungo.
- 19-bar pressure pump.
- Uses high-quality Nespresso coffee capsules.
- Includes the superb Aeroccino3 milk frother.
- Automatic energy saving mode.
It’s wickedly easy to be your own barista, just insert the capsule and choose your preset programme to get your desired coffee strength. And if you’re really in a hurry, dispensing perfect quality espresso directly into a cup is life-changing!
If you prefer cappuccinos or lattes, there’s an option for that too as the integrated milk frother means there is no need for another appliance.
This is the coffee machine for anyone that doesn’t have time to brew a cup, wants something quick and hassle-free, but with an artisan feel.
The espresso capsules taste just as good as what you would get in Italy, but are so easy to use!
There’s no need for filters or grounds—just pop your choice of capsule into the slot and select whether you want an espresso or lungo drink.
A very compact and stylish design this machine will look amazing in any kitchen.Check latest price on Amazon.
What capsules can I use in these coffee machines?
As we have discussed, when it comes to using Nespresso, you must keep in mind that the Vertuo machine limits you to only Nespresso branded pods. This can work out more expensive but there is an option to get the machine for just £1 when you take out a coffee subscription. The Original machine uses standard pods that can be purchased either from the brand itself or through other manufacturers, giving you more choice.
Where Lavazza is concerned, one of the greatest benefits of the pods is that they are all compostable making them more eco-friendly. The Nespresso pods are recyclable but not all are compostable putting Lavazza ahead of the game in this aspect. Lavazza also offers a good selection of pods that can be used across all its machines. There are also other manufacturers whose pods are compatible with a Lavazza machine.
Lavazza vs Nespresso – Which is the best value for money?
If you are looking to get the best bang for your buck then off the bat, we would suggest that Lavazza is the best brand for you. It works out far cheaper to buy the capsules and their coffee pod machines come with a much lower upfront cost. Depending on current offers, prices start from around £40 but when buying Nespresso capsule machines, the minimum you’ll pay is £60.
When it comes to the pods, Vertuo users will be paying between 33p and 41p per capsule. However, those using an Original Nespresso machine will be able to use compatible pods from as little as 20p each. That said, it still doesn’t beat the competitive Lavazza prices whose own capsules start at just 27p and compatible capsules can be sourced for as little as 17p.
What about their rep?
Both Lavazza and Nespresso are massive brands which have built fantastic reputations. According to reviews left on Trustpilot (it’s up to you how much weight you put on these), Lavazza has a slightly better rep in terms of customer service, reliability and overall quality compared to Nespresso. But in the grand scheme of things, their ratings are similar.
According to those reviews a gripe with Nespresso is that the service can sometimes be slow, and customers have experienced a range of problems in getting their needs met when things go wrong. However, the quality of the machines and coffee has received nothing but rave reviews.
Lavazza, on the other hand excels where customer service is concerned but there have been several complaints about the quality of the coffee. Personally, though I’ve always found Lavazza coffee to be delicious. But taste is always subjective.
Lavazza vs Nespresso – the final verdict
Nespresso and Lavazza are both considered to be huge brands when it comes to coffee pod machines, and they produce some of the world’s best. Both have their pros and cons and while the Nespresso is a little more expensive, it does come in two different types that allows coffee lovers a wider selection of drink choices.
On the other hand, Lavazza offers incredible value for money and the customer service is second to none. As with anything there are pros and cons to each but one thing they have in common is they both provide you with a quick and convenient way to make coffee in a fast-paced world.
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