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Simply U: we review Nespresso's UMilk
4.9Overall Score

Price (RRP): $299
Manufacturer: Nespresso / DeLonghi

There are plenty of coffee pod competitors out there, but only one Nespresso, and this year the big N plans to show how it can improve its entry-level U machine, by cutting out one cord and combining two devices.

Features

The latest edition of Nespresso’s U, the UMilk takes the combination of specs applied from the first U and finds a way to make it even better by doing something that makes a lot of sense: combining the extra milk frother that is the Aeroccino3 into the main unit.

In the UMilk, the Aeroccino’s base station sits off to the side of the main machine, removing the extra cord and making the whole machine feel more connected. Previously, the Nespresso U arrived with a separate Aeroccino base station to start the magnetic Aeroccino milk preparation canister, the same one supplied with the UMilk.

Outside of this, it’s more or less the same U as last time, with a removable 800ml water tank, 19 bar pump, three touch buttons for different coffee measurements (ristretto’s 25ml, espresso’s 40ml, and lungo’s 120ml), and a spent coffee pod bay capable of storing up to 12 used capsules.

Just like the last model, everything in the Nespresso UMilk is automatic, and just like in that same prior model, the drip tray and cup support rely on magnets to connect to the main machine.

In Australia, there are two companies manufacturing the UMilk, with the white model produced by Breville, and the black produced by DeLonghi.

While the review model was a DeLonghi Nespresso UMilk, the experience should be the same across both.

Performance

Coffee addicts keen to get their caffeine fix before they leave the house often have to scramble with machines that require tamping, group heads, and grinding coffee beans into fine dust, but that’s not for everyone.

Indeed, some of us just want everything to be automated, and with a simple drop of a pod, we can have coffee with excellent crema, just like that.

Nespresso’s UMilk has been released with that in mind, continuing the excellent tradition of factory-engineered coffee capsules for an identical coffee drinking experience across the board.

Nespresso has been doing this longer than most, and as such now has a range of espresso pods designed to produce the same cup of coffee every time the machine is used.

Little about the UMilk has changed from a design point of view since we saw the Nespresso U last year: it’s a shorter plastic version of Nespresso’s CitiZ model, designed to look modern and yet still blend in with a clean environment.