Looking for the perfect Nespresso machine to make Americano or espresso only? With so many options on the market, it can be overwhelming to choose the right one. Luckily, I have for you the ONE Nespresso machine that was made exactly for the purpose of making an Americano with a press of a button.
When it comes to making an Americano with a single push of a button, you need a machine that can deliver a shot of espresso and dispense hot water all in the same machine. There’s one, not so popular Nespresso machine that does just that, and it’s the Essenza Plus.
In this guide, I’ll discuss the features of Essenza Plus and what makes it the best Nespresso machine for Americano as well as espresso and lungo. And the best Nespresso pods for making Americanos.
What is an Americano?
An Americano is a popular coffee drink that is made by adding hot water to a shot of espresso. It is believed to have originated during World War II when American soldiers stationed in Italy found the espresso too strong and began diluting it with hot water to make it more palatable.
The resulting drink has a similar strength to drip coffee but with a smoother, richer flavor profile. It is often enjoyed black, but can also be served with milk or sugar according to personal preference.
To make an Americano, you will need an espresso shot and hot water. The ratio of espresso to hot water can vary depending on personal preference, but a typical ratio is 1:2 (one part espresso to two parts hot water). The espresso shot is first extracted into a cup, and then hot water is added to fill the cup.
Best Nespresso Machine for Americano: Essenza Plus
Technically speaking, you can make an Americano with ANY Nespresso machine. All of them can make a shot of espresso, and with the addition of hot water from a kettle, you’ve got your Americano ready.
But the Essenza Plus was designed especially for someone who wants to make an Americano as well as other espresso drinks. And of course, with the help of an electric milk frother, you can practically make any coffee drink.
Why Nespresso Essenza Plus is Best for Americano, Espresso and Lungo
Like I already mentioned, Essenza Plus was designed with the Americano drinker in mind. Like all other OriginalLine machines, it has an espresso and lungo serving size. But what really makes it special is the two additional serving sizes: Americano and Americano XL.
|0.85 oz espresso + 4.2 oz hot water
|1.37 oz espresso + 5.4 oz hot water
|Manual flow stop
Two Americano Serving Sizes
Essenza Plus has two Americano serving sizes: Americano and Americano XL.
- Americano serving size is a 0.85oz of espresso + 4.2 oz hot water
- Americano XL makes 1.35 oz of espresso + 5.4 oz of hot water
All of these ratios can be reprogrammed to your desired volumes.
When you select an Americano option, the Essenza Plus will first dispense the coffee then automatically dispense hot water after, using the dedicated hot water dispenser located left of the coffee spout.
The only downside to this feature, is that the machine does not have dedicated buttons for Americano options. Instead, you will have to press the Espresso + hot water button or Lungo+hot water to get an Americano.
This isn’t a huge issue, definitely not a deal breaker, but I would have preferred that there are dedicated buttons for each beverage. The fact that this model has the Americano serving size is already a huge win for me and all Americano lovers!.
Dedicated Hot Water Dispenser
The dedicated hot water dispenser on the Nespresso Essenza Plus is located on the side of the machine. It is easy to use and provides hot water on demand. You can adjust the volume of hot water dispensed to suit your needs.
One of the benefits of having a dedicated hot water dispenser is that it saves time. You don’t have to wait for water to boil on the stove or use a separate kettle. The hot water dispenser on the Nespresso Essenza Plus is quick and efficient, providing hot water in seconds.
The hot water option has its own dedicated button. Which means, you can use the hot water dispenser option for any thing from tea, hot chocolate, instant meals… you name it.
Without the dedicated hot water, the other option to get hot water from a Nespresso Originalline was by pressing any serving size without inserting a coffee pod. That way, the machine will dispense hot water. The downside to this was that you’d always get coffee residue in your hot water.
This is why having a dedicated hot water dispenser like Essenza Plus’s is a great addition, not only for Americanos, but for anything you might need hot water for!
Espresso Serving Size
The Nespresso Essenza Plus, like all OriginalLine machines, offers a standard serving size of 1.35 ounces for its espresso shots. This serving size is perfect for those who prefer a strong, bold coffee flavor.
Lungo Serving Size
A lungo shot is a longer extraction of coffee that results in a milder flavor profile. The Nespresso OriginalLine offers a standard serving size of 3.70 ounces for its lungo shots. This serving size is perfect for those who prefer a more mild and balanced coffee flavor.
To brew a lungo shot, simply insert your Nespresso capsule into the machine and press the lungo button. The machine will extract the coffee for a longer period of time, resulting in a milder and more balanced coffee flavor.
Related: L’OR Barista System is an OriginalLine machine that can brew both espresso and coffee using propitiatory XXL Pods
Is Nespresso Lungo the Same as Americano?
At this point, you could be wondering… is Americano and Lungo the same thing?
Both are described as a “milder, longer serving of espresso”, but they are not the same.
Nespresso Lungo Preparation
Nespresso Lungo (3.7 oz of coffee) is a type of espresso shot that is made with more water than a regular espresso shot. So it’s the same shot of espresso but extracted for a longer time by forcing more water through the same espresso shot. The result is a coffee that is less strong than espresso but has a similar flavor profile.
The Nespresso Lungo capsules are designed to deliver a smooth and rich flavor, with a hint of bitterness. Nespresso Lungo capsules are available in a variety of flavors, including Fortissio Lungo, Vivalto Lungo, and Linizio Lungo.
Americano (5 oz or 7 oz) is a coffee drink that is made by adding hot water to a shot of espresso. So it’s 1.35 oz of espresso and the rest of the drink is just added hot water. An Americano is comparable to a cup of drip or brewed coffee, but it still has the distinctive taste of espresso.
Differences Between Nespresso Lungo and Americano
While both Nespresso Lungo and Americano are made with espresso, they are not the same. Here are some of the key differences:
- Nespresso Lungo is made with more water than a regular espresso shot, while Americano is made by adding hot water to a shot of espresso.
- Nespresso Americano is designed to be a longer and milder coffee experience, while Lungo has a similar flavor profile to espresso but is less strong.
- Nespresso Lungo capsules are available in a variety of flavors, while Americano is usually made with a single shot of espresso.
Features of the Essenza Plus
Now that I have gone over what makes the Essenza Plus the best Nespresso machine for Americano, let’s have a look at the full features and specs of this machine:
- Serving Sizes: The Essenza Plus can make a wide range of drinks, including espresso (1.35oz), lungo (3.75 oz), Americano (0.85 oz espresso + 4.2 oz Hot water), and Americano XL (1.35 oz espresso + 5.4 oz hot water).
- Dedicated Hot Water Dispenser: It also has a hot water function, so you can easily make tea or other hot beverages.
- Adjustable cup size: You can adjust the cup size for each drink to suit your preferences.
- Bluetooth connectivity: This might seem like a gimmick, and to me honestly, it kind of is. The machine has a bluetooth connection and a ‘REORDER’ button on the machine that allows you to reorder pods when you are running low. To be actually able to do that, you’ll have to actually go on the app and preset your order. This seems counterintuitive to me.
- Compact size: The Essenza Plus is smaller than some other Nespresso machines, so it won’t take up too much counter space. It’s also lightweight and easy to move around if needed.
- Energy-saving: It has an energy-saving mode and an automatic shut-off feature to conserve electricity.
Overall, the Essenza Plus is a great choice for anyone who wants a versatile, compact Nespresso machine that can make a great Americano. To me, this is the perfect machine for someone who wants a Nespresso purely for Espresso and Americanos. And if you want to expand your coffee recipes, you can always bundle it with an Aeroccino to make milk based coffee drinks.
Difference Between Nespresso Essenza Plus vs Essenza Mini
The Essenza Plus is designed based on the Essenza Mini, the two models look almost identical, but the Essenza Plus has the upgraded features to the Mini model.
|Espress, Lungo, Americano, Americano XL
|Hot Water Feature
Size and Capacity
Although both are quite compact, there’s a size difference between the two models. The Essenza Mini is the smallest Nespresso machine available, measuring just 4.3 inches wide and 8 inches tall. The Essenza Plus, on the other hand, is a bit larger, measuring 5.6 inches wide and 10 inches tall.
The Essenza Mini also has a smaller water tank, holding just 20.3 ounces of water. The Essenza Plus, on the other hand, has a larger 34-ounce water tank, which means you’ll need to refill it less often.
Serving Sizes and Hot Water Feature
While the Essenza Mini is a basic machine, the Essenza Plus has a few extra features that might be worth considering. For example, the Essenza Plus has a hot water dispenser, which makes it easy to make an Americano without having to heat up water separately. Not only that, but it actually does the whole Americano process automatically.
Another feature that sets the Essenza Plus apart is its Bluetooth connectivity. With the Nespresso app, you can customize your coffee preferences and save them to the machine. You can also order new capsules directly from the app.
Making an Americano on an Essenza Plus vs Essenza Mini
Essenza Plus is designed to make Americanos with a press of a button. By selecting either size for an Americano, the machine will first dispense a shot of espresso added by 4 or 5 oz of hot water, automatically.
To make an Americano with an Essenza Mini, you’ll have to brew an espresso shot then add the hot water from a kettle. Or you can brew an ’empty shot’ to get how water, but that won’t work good enough for two reasons:
- dispensing hot water without using a pod gets you either 1.35 oz 3.7 oz of hot water only.
- The dispensed water will most likely have residue and coffee grounds because you are using the same spout as the coffee’s. Unlike Essenza Plus’s dedicated hot water dispenser.
If you want to make an Americano using any OriginalLine machine other than the Essenza Plus, your best option is to use a kettle for your hot water.
Of course, one of the biggest differences between the Essenza Plus and the Essenza Mini is their price. The Essenza Mini is one of the most affordable Nespresso machines available, with a retail price of around $150. The Essenza Plus, on the other hand, is more expensive, with a retail price of around $250. (prices are subject to change, these are the average prices)
Which Do You Pick?
The Essenza Mini is the next best Nespresso for Espresso only or Americanos after the Essenza Plus. But you’ll be missing a crucial component: the hot water dispenser.
If the Essenza Plus is within your budget, this is definitely the right machine to choose. But if it’s a little bit more than what you want to pay, go for the Essenza Mini. But please, heat your water separately, and do not dispense hot water from the Essenza Mini into your coffee, that is equivelant to cleaning your machine into your cup, which is not something you’d like to drink.
What Coffee Drinks Can Nespresso Essenza Plus Make?
When it comes to coffee drinks, the Nespresso Essenza Plus is a versatile machine that can make a variety of delicious beverages. Here are some of the coffee drinks that you can make with this machine:
The star of our current article, the Americano! the Nespresso Essenza Plus is best machine for your daily Americanos.
Of course, the Nespresso Essenza Plus can also make a great espresso. It’s an Espresso machine, first and foremost. So this one is a given.
If you prefer a longer coffee drink, the Nespresso Essenza Plus can also make a Lungo. This drink is similar to an Espresso but uses more water to create a milder flavor. By default, it makes a 3.7 oz serving of Lungo.
Cappuccino, Latte, Macchiato…
If you’re ever in the mood for a frothy, creamy cappuccino, latte or Macchiato, you’ll be able to make those with the help of an electric milk frother. You can always bundle your Essenza Plus with an Aeroccino, or choose any other electric frother you might prefer.
What Pods Can You Use in Nespresso Essenza Plus
Nespresso Essenza Plus is an OriginalLine machine, which is great news, because that means it is compatible with OriginalLine pods from Nespresso (the small pods), OriginalLine pods from third party brands and it’s also compatible with refillable pods, but those are my least favorite and I don’t recommend them (more on this below).
You can use the following Nespresso pods in your Essenza Plus:
Nespresso’s OriginalLine capsules are the classic Nespresso pods that come in a variety of flavors and intensities. These capsules are designed to work with the Essenza Plus and other OriginalLine machines. Nespresso pods are available as decaf, too.
There are many third-party Nespresso-compatible capsules available on the market. While these capsules may not be officially endorsed by Nespresso, they can be a great option if you’re looking for a more affordable or unique coffee experience. You’ll find many pods from brands like Starbucks, L’or’s, Illy, Lavazza, Dunkin’s and more.
Those are not officially made by Nespresso. They’re made from generic brands, usually made from hard plastic or stainless steel. They’re designed to allow you to use your own ground coffee with your Nespresso machine, but here’s why I dislike those and don’t recommend them:
- The material of these pods can be quite harmful to your machine. The hard plastic or stainless steel can, at some point, break the puncture needle of your Nespresso machine. This also takes you out of warranty immediately.
- You have to fill those pods with the perfect grind size for espresso, or else, you’ll either end up with a weak cup of espresso or with an over/underfilled pod that will explode inside your machine.
- Last but not least, it takes all the conveinence out of your Nespresso experience. Nespresso machines are supposed to be a luxurious and convenient experience where you get your coffee without the need to do any work or clean up afterwards. Dealing with refillable pods is the exact opposite.
Best Nespresso Pods for Americano
When it comes to choosing the best Nespresso pod for your Americano, I highly recommend that you choose a high intensity pod, so it mellows nicely when the hot water is added. Nespresso intensity goes as high as 13, so a pod of intensity 9 and up to 13 will work great.
If you want your Americano to taste milder, choose a medium intensity pod.
1. Nespresso OriginalLine Roma
If you’re looking for a strong and full-bodied Americano, the Nespresso OriginalLine Roma pod is a great choice. It’s made with a blend of Arabica and Robusta beans, which gives it a rich and intense flavor. This pod is also a great option if you prefer your Americano with a splash of milk.
2. Nespresso OriginalLine Arpeggio
For a smooth Americano, consider the Nespresso OriginalLine Arpeggio pod. It’s made with a blend of Arabica beans from South and Central America, which gives it a balanced flavor. This pod also produces a thick and creamy crema, which makes it a great option for those who enjoy a more indulgent Americano.
3. Starbucks by Nespresso Espresso Roast
If you’re a fan of Starbucks coffee, you’ll love the Starbucks by Nespresso Espresso Roast pod. It’s made with a blend of Latin American and Asian Pacific beans, which gives it a rich and intense flavor. This pod is also a great option if you prefer your Americano with a splash of milk.
4- Lavazza Espresso Intenso Medium Dark Roast Capsules
Made from a blend of Arabia and Robusta beans with a medium dark roast finish, this Espresso Intenso by Lavazza is a favorite. It has an intensity level of 11, which gives you an idea of how strong tasting this capsule is.
5- L’OR Risttretto Nespresso Capsules
A bold tasting coffee from Sumatra, made from Arabica beans only. With an intensity level of 11, it’s a dark roasted, rich tasting coffee that will taste balanced as an Americano.