Looking for a new single serve espresso machine?
You’ve come to the right place.
Keurig and Nespresso are the two biggest names in the single serve industry, and they market their products to slightly different audiences:
- Keurig targets coffee drinkers and pitches a quick, convenient cup
- Nespresso targets espresso drinkers and pitches a higher-quality, more refined product
But while it’s true Keurig sticks to the coffee, they did venture into the capsule-based espresso and specialty beverage arena at one point.
What is the Keurig Rivo?
Released in December 2012, the Rivo expanded upon Keurig’s initial models, which limited users to single cup coffees up to 12 oz.
With the Rivo, Keurig gave consumers a few different options:
- Brews 1.4 oz espresso and 2.8 oz lungo beverages
- Uses special Rivo pods
- Does not brew regular coffee
- Comes with an integrated frother for specialty beverages
Keurig’s plan with the Rivo was to siphon off some of America’s single serve espresso market, which Nespresso begun to invade.
Keurig did not succeed.
Four years later, in December 2016, Keurig pulled the plug on the Rivo and abandoned the specialty beverage market.
Instead, they put all of their effort into building out the Keurig 2.0 line, which features expanded pod-based coffee brewing options:
- Brews up to 30 oz carafes
- Large, color touch LCD display on advanced models
- More programmable settings on advanced models
Check out two of Keurig’s best 2.0 models by reading our Keurig K475 vs K575 comparison.
So, What’s Nespresso All About?
A single serve monolith with a stranglehold on Europe, Nespresso is still pretty small in the United States.
Just take a look at this chart, which shows market share in the United States from 2011-2016.
Look, I’m from the United States and I think our coffee consumers need to wake the hell up!
In my opinion, Nespresso makes more reliable machines which brew better coffee. They have two lines of machines, OriginalLine and VertuoLine, which are similar to Keurig’s 1.0 and 2.0 products.
- OriginalLine: No pod-scanning system and brews up to 3.70 oz lungo
- VertuoLine: Pod-scanning system and brews up to 17 oz long coffees
There are more differences than just those. You can read our full Nespresso OriginalLine vs VertuoLine Comparison for the complete breakdown.
Nespresso offers 17 different models, each of which have slight differences:
- OriginalLine or VertuoLine
- Available brew sizes
- Water reservoir size
- External material
- Size and weight
- Wireless connectivity with the Nespresso app
- Integrated frother
And a bunch more.
You can compare Nespresso machines with our comprehensive guide!
(It’s well worth your time.)
Keurig Rivo vs Nespresso: Which Should You Choose?
Everyone’s situation is different, but this one is a no-brainer for me:
Go with a Nespresso machine.
Even if you think Keurig is the better company with the superior product, there’s one indisputable fact here:
Keurig doesn’t make or support the Rivo line anymore!
Rivo users complain that the pods are too hard to find and Keurig customer support isn’t very helpful with a discontinued machine and product line.
Maybe if this was 2013 and there was buzz around the Rivo — then I could see someone wanting to buy into the machine.
But we’re well beyond 2013.
Now don’t get me wrong. I don’t advocate you pass on the Rivo because the Rivo itself has been discontinued. Nespresso has discontinued many models that I still recommend, such as the Nespresso Pixie. The problem is Keurig has discontinued its entire espresso and specialty beverage product line.
At least with the Nespresso Pixie you can still use the same capsules as other OriginalLine machines. Nespresso still makes those. Keurig doesn’t make Rivo-line stuff anymore!
If that has you convinced to check out a Nespresso machine, I can’t recommend our complete comparison guide enough.
But if you want some recommendations, I have those too!
Recommended Nespresso Models
There are 17 different Nespresso machines between the two product lines (OriginalLine and VertuoLine). Here are my favorites in different scenarios.
Scenario 1: You want the smallest, most inexpensive model
Go with the Essenza Mini.
Scenario 2: You want an integrated frother for one-touch specialty beverages
Go with the Lattissima Pro.
Scenario 3: You want to brew long coffees up to 17 oz, not just Americanos
Go with the Evoluo.
Scenario 4: You want the best Nespresso model available
Any other scenarios I missed? Feel free to ask below in the comments!