Nespresso’s Vertuo system, which launched in 2016 in the UK, wasn’t just about changing the capsules used but introducing an entirely new brewing system to deliver mug-fulls of coffee – I loved it, and the original Vertuo Plus has become my firm favourite. Today, the company is back with the Nespresso Vertuo Next, a smaller, more compact coffee machine.

It has a few refinements and a wider choice of buying options but delivers the same quality coffee, delivered by the innovative centrifugal brewing system, with a growing range of capsules to choose from.

Nespresso Vertuo Next – What you need to know

  • Ease of use – One-touch operation makes this just about the easiest coffee machine to use
  • Coffee quality – Strong, smooth and rich coffee that can fill a mug makes this coffee like you’ve not had before.

Related: Best coffee machine

Build and features – Solidly made and really simple to use

The main difference between this machine and the original Nespresso system is that the Vertuo pods are designed to deliver larger, mug-fulls of coffee, rather than just espresso or lungo shots. This means that Vertuo machines need larger water tanks, so you don’t have to constantly refill them, which in turn means that they tend to be bigger coffee machines than those that use original pods.

The original Nespresso Vertuo Plus is certainly quite a beast of a machine, with a large 1.7-litre water tank at the back. While not particularly wide, the machine needed a fair amount of height clearance to be stored.

The Vertuo Next is a smaller, leaner coffee machine that fits into a smaller space (320 x 140 x 380mm). Part of the space-saving is down to the smaller 1.1-litre water tank at the rear. Even so, with the majority of Nespresso Vertuo pods delivering 230ml of drink, you can get four mugs out of this machine before having to refill it.

Nespresso sells this machine in three different variations. The basic machine (£149) is finished in plastic but has a choice of six colours; the Vertuo Next Premium (£179) is available with a cleaner finish and comes in two colours; the Vertuo Next Deluxe (£199) has a smart light- or dark-chrome exterior and is the model that I have on review.

Versions aside, all models offer the same features, including the moveable drip tray that has three positions, allowing for everything from an espresso cup to a mug 165mm tall to be placed under the spout.

Nespresso Vertuo Next drip tray attached
The drip tray can be placed in three positions for different mug sizes

The Vertuo Plus had a motorised lid that lifted up at the touch of a button; the Vertuo Next has a spring-loaded lid with a manual clip at the front. Just slide the clip to the unlocked positions and the lid springs open so that you can drop a capsule into place. You need a bit of force to close and lock the lid, but it’s not a difficult job. Arguably, the new system has less that can go wrong with it, but my Vertuo Plus machine is still going strong more than three years after I first had it.

Nespresso Vertuo Next capsule in place
Coffee pods are placed here and are picked up and dropped into the bin when used

One of the best things about the Vertuo series is that it’s truly one-button operation. There’s a barcode on each capsule which tells the machine how to prepare the coffee and how much liquid to dispense.

Nespresso Vertuo Next lid
The single button on top is all you need

If you don’t like the defaults, there are options: you can manually stop the flow of coffee when you’re done, or you can top up with extra water; and, you can press and hold the button down until you have the right amount of coffee to set a new delivery amount. Defaults are stored per coffee type, so you need to remember to press-and-hold the button for each coffee type.

All used coffee pods are picked up and slid into the used capsule bin, which you simply pull out the side of the machine.

This coffee machine has Bluetooth and Wi-Fi, which lets the machine keep track of the capsules you use so that you can get a warning via the app when you’re running out of coffee. This also lets you update the firmware on the coffee machine, presumably so that dispensing volumes can be adjusted and finetuned. It’s easy enough to get the Vertuo Next connected to your home network, but there’s little you can actually do once it’s online.

Coffee quality – Rich and smooth coffee

Key to the success of the Nespresso Vertuo Next machine is its centrifugal brewing system, which spins the coffee pod at high speed to extract the coffee. Each pod has a barcode on it that tells the Vertuo Next how much coffee to dispense, and how it should be extracted.

It’s an impressive system, with plenty of coffee choices, including espresso, double espresso, grand lungo, mug and alto (large mug) options. Nespresso launched with an impressive array of coffee types, including flavoured ones, and the range has extended: see my best Nespresso Vertuo pod round-up for more details.

What I love about the system is that you get a mug full of rich, smooth coffee with a deep crema like with no other coffee you’ve tasted. Temperature across the range is spot on at around 67C, with impressive control over the amount of coffee dispensed for each type. Flavour depends on the capsules that you use, but the Vertuo Next is capable of delivering a rich experience like you’ve not had before. In fact, the Vertuo Next is my machine of choice for a morning coffee.

Mug of coffee
Rich and tasty, the coffee from this machine is excellent

With the emphasis on longer amounts of coffee, this is a machine that’s designed for those that like their coffee black or with a dash of milk. If you like milky coffees, you can buy espresso shots and an Aeroccino milk frother, but if this is your ideal type of drink, a traditional espresso machine or Nespresso pod machine might make more sense.

Maintenance – Very easy to keep running

Pod machines are really easy to maintain, and the Nespresso Vertuo Next is one of the simplest in that group. Thanks to the centrifugal brewing system, pretty much all traces of coffee are extracted from the machine, so the pods come out relatively dry. It’s nice to see a slight refinement to the used capsule bin, with an inner liner that has holes in it, so any moisture runs out. All capsules are completely recyclable for free via Nespresso stores or organised collection.

Capsule bin
The new capsule bin is easier to keep clean

You’ll need to clean the drip tray from time to time, although the centrifugal system means that you don’t get many drips once you’ve removed your mug of coffee.

Finally, when the machine blinks orange, it’s time to descale. You’ll need to grab the manual to follow the exact instructions, but it’s a straightforward process.

Should you buy the Nespresso Vertuo Next?

The first question you have to ask yourself is, is the Vertuo system for you? If you like longer drinks of coffee, then this absolutely is the right type for you; if you prefer espresso, a traditional machine or Nespresso pod machine are the best options.

For those that like that a longer coffee, the Nespresso Vertuo Next is an excellent choice, delivering smooth, long shots of coffee in a way that’s completely different to any other machine. The new coffee machine size is slightly more manageable than with the original Nespresso Vertuo Plus, too.

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