Background – Our old Coffee Machine
About two years ago we purchased a Starbucks Verismo 580 coffee and espresso machine. It is a great coffee machine and an owner can easily use it to produce on demand hot water or on demand coffee. Unfortunately, there was a downside, in the U.S. the only pods that you can buy for it are Starbucks brand, Starbucks Brand Pods. This is fine if you live close to a Starbucks that sells the pods or plan enough in advance to order them online. Shoot you can even order Starbucks Milk Pods for an espresso or hot milk with tea. When we purchased the coffee maker we had hoped that it would expand in the U.S. and competition would roll in (like happened with Keurig). Now there is no denying that the Verismo makes a good cup of coffee and if that is what you are looking for then it is a great option (just be aware that you will be locked in to Starbucks only products).
The Problem – Starbucks only was limiting
In many larger cities perhaps it is not that difficult to walk down the block to the Starbucks grab your pods and go. However, in a city of 1,500 people and a 25 minute drive from the closest starbucks (40 minutes to the closest Starbucks that sells the pods) it is not practical to drive so far for pods. I like Starbucks (I can get Keurig cup Starbucks closer, but apparently they don’t work with retailers in my area on their Verismo cups).
The Solution – A New Machine – Keurig 2.0 K460
Well the wife finally had enough and bought a new coffee machine, the Keurig 2.0 K460 Brewing System. I have to say this machine is pretty cool it has a LED light inside the water reservoir for stylish looks. The water reservoir can hold 70 ounces of water. There is a filter to ensure the water is higher quality. Even cooler I can control how many ounces it pours (4-10) for a single cup. It will pour just hot water or make hot chocolate, tea, coffee, etc…. It will even brew enough for four cups at once, Keurig Carafe pot, using slightly different pods that the machine will use,Keurig Carafe Pods. There’s even a carousel if you have counter space and want a decorative coffee pod holder, Keurig Carousel. The carousel will accommodate both the larger K-Carafe pods or the smaller K-Cups just like the machine.
Conclusion – A Winner
Ok, so I am pretty impressed with the Keurig 2.0 K460 Brewing System coffee machine. We have only had it for two days and so far it has worked flawlessly and wonderfully. The old coffee maker will be going to the office with me while the new one which is more suitable for guests and multiple people will remain at home. There are a few reviews online that rate this machine lower than I feel it deserves. It seems that the main complaint is that for the 2.0 model Keurig has implemented a scanning device to check if the cup is certified by the company. Apparently some of the older machines would break and it was due to cups being used which were not high enough quality for the device. This kinda sounds like hogwash and more what the reviewers who ding it suspect, that the patent was expiring and they wanted to keep selling pods instead of the competition. In any case Keurig labelled pods which are accepted by the machine are everywhere and often even cheaper online if you have the forethought to order them before you run out.
From an environmental perspective I would score the device as inconclusive. It has the advantage of only heating the amount of water needed when it is needed (much like an on-demand water heater). Though the pods are not recyclable and the device is designed to prevent the reusable cups that were popular on earlier Keurig machines. The machine will let you run the water through the cup at a slower rate to allow less water to brew more potent coffee, this perhaps will save some water (though I have been using the larger water setting, so maybe not). This is probably not a device to save money or the environment but for a convenient cup of coffee it is pretty good. If Keurig can solve the non-recyclable pod issue (they plan to by 2020) then this device would score much higher on the environmental side. The Verismo was about the same regarding the environmental issues (Starbucks does say their pods are recyclable but check with your recycling company) in the end I think either machine will make a satisfactory cup of coffee and it just comes down to preference (and if you want to be using exclusively Starbucks brand coffee). If you know someone with a new Keurig a variety pack might make a good gift as it can expose them to different flavors of pods.
Answers to Questions:
Q: Will Starbucks Verismo pods work in a Keurig?
A: No, the pods are different and not cross compatible.