Not everyone wants a fangled, complicated coffee maker, right? If you’re in the market for a brewing machine and haven't spotted a simple option from our best coffee machine guide then look at a Nespresso machine instead. The best Nespresso coffee machines produce very decent cups of coffee, but they do it fast and efficiently. There’s no fiddling around as the magic is locked inside the Nespresso capsule or pod.
That means you can grab a coffee-to-go, or enjoy it at your leisure, which is also possible given the times we live in, using a one-stop machine that does it all, within reason. Nespresso makes all kinds of coffee drinks and more besides, with some fun and funky offerings sitting alongside more conventional caffeine treats that can be produced in all of your favourite serving sizes depending on the model.
A prime example of this is the Krups Essenza Mini XN110B40, which sits at the budget end of the huge Nespresso coffee machine marketplace. The big sell for most here is that it’s brilliant at producing espresso. More usefully for us, however, is its compact size.
Krups Essenza Mini XN110B40: price, availability and what is it?
Coffee machines are all well and good, but they take up space on your countertop and if they don't get used everyday can end up gathering dust and basically get right on your nerves. Enter then the line of ultra-compact capsule coffee machines that are appearing, which come with a much smaller footprint and they’re usually that bit cheaper too.
The Krups Essenza Mini XN110B40 is a classic example of this thinking. It’s a dinky little capsule coffee machine that’s small on the outside, but still has the potential to make great espresso thanks to its big flavour-on-the-inside pod power. It’s cheap too. You can bag the machine for £89.99 (UK), $149 (US) and AUD $167 in Australia. You might find, depending on where you are or where you’re buying it from that the branding might be different. The machine though should be basically the same, give or take the badge. And, er, colour.
While it’s definitely affordable the coffee maker is also diminutive, with dimensions of just 204 x 330 x 84 mm (H x L x W). The unit is light as well, weighing just 2.3kg, so it’s therefore perfect if you’re pushed for space in your kitchen, home office or any other preferred location. You can apparently get this specific model in one of three different colours (black, grey or white), and ours looked perfectly acceptable in its charcoal hue.
Krups Essenza Mini XN110B40: features
Nespresso’s smallest machine is just that, so don’t buy this coffee maker if you’re looking for lots of bells and whistles. Its simplicity and size are the main selling points really, outside of its espresso-producing prowess of course. Because of its small size there’s a diddy water tank too, which holds 0.6-litres and that’s fine for espresso shot purposes so hardly a negative.
Along with the compact design and ease of use this model possesses it’s quick on the uptake. After popping in a Nespresso or Nespresso-compatible capsule it can produce a 30ml, 80 degrees-hot espresso in around 25 to 30 seconds, which is perfect for anyone heading out the door in the morning. A choice of just two modes get the machine underway, with a press of the espresso or lungo buttons all that is needed to have a hot drink.
The appliance also reverts to a low energy mode after 3 minutes too, which is good news on the electricity consumption front. It’ll automatically switch off altogether after 9 minutes if you don't press the power button yourself. Good to know if you’re forgetful or in a hurry. The integrated container for used capsules is handy, although it’ll need emptying on a regular basis because of its size.
Krups Essenza Mini XN110B40: performance
Using the Krups Essenza Mini XN110B40 for the first time proved simple, straightforward and delivered a quality burst of espresso. The unit is pretty quiet compared to some models, which have internals that create both a racket and quite a lot of countertop vibration too. There’s 19 bar of pressure, so your drink turns out just as expected: strong and hot.
We produced a trio of drinks in quick succession and the results were consistent. The water tank does need frequent replenishment, but it’s made of clear plastic so you can see exactly where you’re at with the levels. Aside from the great coffee making performance, we also found that the Essenza Mini was mercifully easy to clean. There’s very little to the design, so an occasional wash of the drip tray and a wipe over of the unit and that’s it. This is a low-maintenance machine for sure.
Of course, there’s no provision for milk with this machine, so it might be prudent to add a milk frother to your shopping list when you buy this model. Then there’s the issue of what to do with those spent pods too. However, we got a package of pods from Nespresso that arrived complete with a bag that lets you get them recycled. It’s a step in the right direction.
So, is Krups Essenza Mini XN110B40 any good?
The Krups Essenza Mini XN110B40 won’t wow you with lots of features and functions. However, what it will do is provide you with espresso and/or lungo coffee drinks with one simple press of a button. There’s minimal effort involved and a similarly low level of care and attention needed in order to keep this coffee machine in tip-top order.
For us though it’s the small size that really works as the unit can be whipped out and popped away again if you’re struggling for space in a galley-style kitchen or similar space. Quick coffee making, affordability and a teensy-weensy footprint make the Krups Essenza Mini XN110B40 a must-have for anyone on the lookout for a machine. The coffee pods themselves may be quite pricey and a bit poncey, but this machine is anything but.