Nespresso Essenza C101 Review

Nespresso-Essenza-C101The Nespresso Essenza C101 is a single serve, automatic espresso maker that has proved to be very popular since its release on to the market. It shares with the other Nespresso espresso machines the speed, convenience and ease of use that we have come to expect from this brand.

Nespresso is synonymous with great tasting espresso, and the compact design of this unit means it fits easily in the kitchen without taking up much space.

If you are looking for a machine that can consistently provide you with a good espresso, made quickly without the need for any skill, work or mess, then the Nespresso Essenza may be just what you are looking for.

How much time does it take to make a cup?

There are many espresso machines around that can take over twenty minutes from start up time to serving a cup of espresso. For those who live a busy life or who just want to be efficient with their time, this can be an annoyance. So it is important to consider how long you are happy to wait for your espresso when making a buying decision about a machine.

The Nespresso Essenza c101 is a very quick machine, which is capable of heating up and serving you a shot of espresso or a longer coffee drink (lungo) in just a few minutes. This is slightly slower than the Nespresso Pixie, but is very fast and convenient nonetheless.

Crema Production

The foam that forms on the surface of your espresso when it is first poured is called the crema, and it can be an indication as to whether or not the espresso is going to be good or not. The presence of a thick, reddish brown crema is the ideal for fans of espresso.

Cheap, steam driven, espresso machines are usually disappointing in their production of crema, and the espresso they make is generally not great either.

The Nespresso Essenza is a higher quality unit, and it is capable of producing a thick, aromatic crema consistently.

Preparing Milk

Unlike the Nespresso Citiz D120, the Nespresso Essenza C101 does not come with an integrated aeroccino for heating and frothing the milk when you are preparing milk based coffee drinks like latte and cappuccino. This means that you will have to buy one in addition to this unit if you are wanting to make those drinks. Nespresso do make an aeroccino which can be used with the Essenza, and makes heating and frothing the milk fast and easy.

Range of espresso coffee that can be used

At this moment in time the Nespresso Essenza, like all the other Nespresso machines, can only be used with espresso capsules made by Nespresso. This situation will probably change sometime in the near future, but for now thats the deal.

This is not really a problem as Nespresso do offer an impressive range of espresso types for use with their machines, and when you order them online, delivery of the capsules takes just a couple of days. Nespresso often manages to get them to you the next day depending on where you live.

The ground espresso coffee is good quality, and the machine comes with 16 different types for you to try.

Steam or Bar

Different machines have a different drive mechanism which are used to force the water through the espresso grounds during the extraction process. Cheap espresso machines often use steam to do this, and the end result is usually low quality espresso, with little or no crema.

If you want to produce a nice cup of espresso it is important to check what the drive mechanism is of the unit you are thinking of buying so that you can get one which produces the quality of taste that you are looking for.

The Nespresso Essenza c101 uses a 19 bar pressure pump. The pressure that this creates during the extraction process is significantly greater than the steam driven approach, and results in a far superior flavor and crema.


The Nespresso Essenza c101 is a relatively quiet espresso machine. In comparison to the other popular Nespresso models it is similar to the Citiz and quieter than the relatively noisy Pixie. The noise it produces is unlikely to bother you.

Nespresso Essenza C101 Dimensions

This espresso maker measures 11.5 x 10 x 10 inches

Additional Features

  • The Nespresso Essenza C101 has a 0.9L removable water tank.
  • It has a thermoblock heater for perfect temperature control.
  • It has an auto ejection mechanism for the used capsules, which are held in a container that can hold around 11-12 capsules.
  • Its buttons can be programmed to use a set volume of water for the espresso shot or lungo.


The Nespresso Essenza comes with a one year warranty.

The Nespresso Essenza C100 Review


  • This unit has a very small footprint. So it fits easily on the kitchen counter without taking up too much space. It is also easily portable, and can be taken on vacations.
  • Cleaning this machine is extremely quick and easy.
  • It has a 19 bar pressure pump that drives the extraction process, resulting in an espresso with very good flavor.
  • The design of the unit is sturdy and well built, and uses stainless steel and quality plastics.
  • Its a relatively quiet espresso maker.
  • The espresso produced consistently has a good crema.
  • The whole process of heat up, extraction and serving of the espresso takes just a matter of a few minutes. It is possible to serve multiple people in a very short space of time with this espresso machine.


  • There is a very small distance between the drip tray and the spout, shorter than on the Citiz, which restricts the size of cups you can use with it to espresso size cups or other cups that are very short in height.
  • You can only use Nespressos range of espresso capsules with the unit. Delivery of these is speedy and they do offer a wide selection. But for people who already have favorites of their own which are not in their range this might be an issue.

Consumer Ratings

The Nespresso Essenza is very well liked by consumers. It is a cheaper and smaller alternative to the Nespresso Citiz, and still delivers a quality espresso in quick time. It currently has a rating of 4.4 stars out of 5 on amazon from their customer reviews.

Nespresso Essenza C100

The Nepresso Essenza also comes as a C100 model. This is functionally the same as the C101, with just small differences in the style of the design.