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on June 3, 2006
My wife and I were in Paris recently for 2.5 weeks and loved the coffee there so much that when we returned we just had to have an espresso machine at home. Researched a variety of espresso makers and decided that an automatic machine was what we wanted. We figured that at some point the novelty of measuring, tamping, cleaning, etc., would grow old and our enthusiasm for making espresso (not drinking it) would diminish, so we agreed that fully automatic was the way to go. Bought the Nespresso Romeo on Amazon last week and have used it many times since then. We absolutely love it, and our friends rave about it, too. Nespresso has more than a dozen different flavors/strengths of coffee in their capsules, which you have to use in this machine. I was a bit concerned about that, but my research indicated that the coffee was of very high quality, and my own tasting over the last few days has confirmed it. Terrific coffee, every bit as good as in Paris coffee bars. And it is just so easy to use and clean. Haven't used the steam element for capuccino or lattes yet, but it appears to be fairly simple to employ. Very good instructions in the provided manual and book, and also on line. I highly recommend this product.
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on October 10, 2006
My impression of these 2 machines.

We bought the Romeo first than returned it 6 months later due to too many electrical problems (even after Nespresso repair) and replaced it with the D290.

Romeo pros: Beautiful modern design

Great coffee

cons: Useless cup warmer

Useless self cleaning mode (very annoying)

Mediocre frothing device

Too many electronics that could (does) go wrong

Too expensive to justify all the electronic

Automatic capsul ejection

D290 pros: Great coffee

Ease of use

Capsule is ejected automatically when user wants to

Less electronic that could go wrong

cons: Spout might be a little low for larger cups

Frothing device

A little noisier than the Romeo

Bottom line: If you can forgo the great looks of the Romeo get the D290.

Frother at both machines is not very good. Use a Bodum hand frother that works faster cleaner and creates great froth.

Coffee is great with both machines.

Enjoy
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on September 16, 2008
I've had my E350 for just over 2 years. While I would recommend a Nespresso machine, I would not recommend this model. First of all, it is extremely loud when making espresso. When I make it in the kitchen, it can wake someone taking a nap on the porch. Or worse, it can be disruptive (and embarrassing) to guests in the dining room. Early on, I wrote to Nespresso (on their website) for assistance with this loud noise and they never wrote back to me. Next, the warming tray does not warm the glasses more than a few degrees (and only if you leave it on the tray for 30-60 minutes), making it not worth your while. You may think that it can easily make cappuccino and other specialty drinks... but with all the tubes and connections, it is a pain in the neck, more noise, messy, and not something you will ever want to do again once you try it. You should seriously think about a separate device to handle the milk and/or make specialty drinks. Regarding heat, I would strongly prefer that the espresso came out hotter. So instead, I will always rinse my cups with HOT WATER to make sure that it will be hot enough to serve. In a related note, it is a pain when making 4 to 8 of espressos in a row (for company) because by the time you are done making the last one, the first one may be cold already... and it just took 5 minutes away from your guests!

There is one good thing... the espresso tastes good. But again, you get the exact same taste from one of the other Nespresso units and thus I strong recommend another UNIT. Be warned, do not buy the E350.
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on December 10, 2007
I agree with Christian...
The Romeo makes coffee as good as we got while in Italy; the trip that prompted our purchase of the Romeo.

Nespresso's coffees are fabulous, their delivery system is quick and easy, and for the quality of coffee you get the price is not outrageous.

But the machine... we use it every day... and after the first few weeks one of the internal parts broke... turns out that sometimes the capsules (because of the pressure that is built up in them during the brewing process) can eject their grounds into the inside of the machine causing the mechanics to jam. Nespresso sent a new part after telling me I should do a better job of cleaning the machine.

Several months later the frother stopped working completely. Again, after being admonished by their customer service person for not taking good enough care of the machine and not being gentle enough with it they agreed as a one-time courtesy (imagine that, and all while the machine is still under full warranty) to send a new and much improved frother...a whole new design. It turns out that the old frother had a tiny piece the size of a push pin that was stuck in the end of a short piece of rubber hose (a very small air vent) that must have come out during cleaning and gotten lost. Who knew? The instructions and common sense pretty much dictate that you should clean the frother after each use but it does not seem to be made for such frequent removal and replacement. The entire frother unit would finally no longer hold onto the steam spout.

Now about 6 months after purchase we are running into electrical problems. The machine refuses to start up, won't make steam but makes a nice water squirter if you need one in your kitchen. A call to Nespresso resulted in another admonishment that I was only unhappy with the way the machine worked and that there was really nothing wrong with it. After some debate and explaining that after six months I knew very well how the machine was supposed to work and that it was no longer working properly the representative finally agreed to (reluctantly) send a loaner machine so this one could be sent back for repair.

The machine will make an outstanding espresso and related drinks but the full cups of coffee are much too weak... there just doesn't seem to be enough coffee in a capsule to make a really good cup of coffee that doesn't taste watered down.

The quality of the Nespresso Romeo does not live up to its $700 - 800 price tag and the machine is certainly not made to hold up under daily use. And it is much too expensive to hide under the counter for occasional use.

The poor performance of this machine in only six months and the very un-sympathetic and condescending nature of their customer service people does not make this a recommended buy.
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on June 21, 2007
My father in law got this machine and I loved it so I bought one for myself. I bought it in April 2006 - in May 2007, it started having electrical problems. It is out of the warranty period and Nespresso is charging $125 to repair it. In the meantime, my father-in-law went through 2 of them and had the same issue. When it works, it works great but when it breaks, it's expensive (out of warranty). While I do the love the look and the espresso, I think I'm going to take my $$ and buy a less complicated model.
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on April 19, 2007
I have has this machine for a little over a year and a half. It makes great coffee. If you want to learn a new trade, you can buy another machine and do it yourself, maybe get better coffees, maybe worse. If you don't feel like going to barista school, Nespresso is the most consistently good coffee machine you can find.

I've been using it in the office and even the local coffee snobs (in Seattle mind you) are impressed with the quality. You are, of course, totally beholden to Nespresso's coffee club but it's 50 cents per and if you buy a ton at once you can scale the $5 shipping charge.

The Romeo is completely automatic and electronic. The bad news is that the computer seems a wee bit screwy. Mine went melt-down and needed to be repaired. Mine was in the warranty period, customer service was fantastic, they sent me a loaner, they paid for shipping, yada, yada, yada. This was great but seemed like if it happens again outside the warranty (1 year) it's going to cost me but good.

I got mine at a massive discount through an Amex promotion back when, were it on my own dime (or when this one dies), I would (I will) buy a more manual model (less bell, less whistle). Seems more pragmatic.

In other notes, the built in steamer attachment is a toy. If you like your foam, get the aeroccinno thingie.

Fantastic coffee, though, love nespresso.
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on December 28, 2006
My in-laws bought me the E350 for Xmas and wow am I impressed. Its really nice on the counter and makes great drinks. The milk frother attachment is awesome (I understand you can also buy it for other models). Basically, it sucks milk up through a hose and shoots super-frothy foam into the cup. Even a monkey could make awesome cappuccinos with this machine! Note that with other steamers and devices, the author has usually succeeded in spraying milk froth all over the kitchen and ending up with only un-frothy hot milk in his cup.

Also, the pods work out to about 55¢ a shot (incl shipping), so my double cappuccino costs me $1.10. That's not too bad. You could probably do better price-wise with a traditional machine, but the hassle, clean-up, and the problem of keeping finely ground espresso roast coffee fresh more than make up for the slightly higher cost of the pods.
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on November 1, 2006
Having owned several espresso machines in the past, including Krups, Francis Francis and La Pavoni,this is the best so far. We have used the Nespresso E-350 Romeo machine for several weeks now and find the simplicity of use, quality of espresso and lack of clean up unlike any other machine. The machine makes espressos or regular cups of coffee at the touch of a button, and with the excellent frothing attachment, cappucinos and lattes are a snap! The warming tray works well and have had no problems with any of the automated functions. This is truly a great machine with excellent support from the company, Nespresso, regarding prompt shipment of capsules as well as accessories for the machine. Highly recommended.
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on May 18, 2010
My previous machine was a FrancisFrancis X5. While I could occasionally make truly outstanding espresso and cappuccino with my X5, too often, it took 2 or 3 attempts to pull a quality shot. What a mess! The ESE pods never seemed fresh to me. The ones from Starbucks were decent, but probably 75% of the time, the pods I found in my local Starbucks were already stale dated. The Illy and Lavazza pods aren't even individually packed, so while the first pod was OK, the rest headed south fairly quickly.

Nespresso is a nice compromise of quality, ease of preparation, and consistency. The best cup of either espresso or cappuccino with the Romeo is not quite as great as the best with my FrancisFrancis, but on average, the quality is at least as good and it's a whole lot easier and neater to boot. I haven't had mine long enough to know how long the capsules will stay fresh, but I'm optimistic, given how sturdy the capsules are and how tightly packed the coffee is. There's not much room for air, and almost no way for it to get in. The capsules I bought from the local Nespresso boutique were packed 3-4 months ago and taste quite fresh.

My one slight disappointment with this unit is the steamer wand. There are two options: the panarello cheater wand, or the steamer contraption with the hose. The steamer contraption is not up to my standards. It produces giant bubbles which collapse quickly. The steamer wand works better, but still injects too much air. The air that produces the bubbles comes from a couple of low depressions in the plastic where the metal sleeve of the wand meets the base. I've found that if I use the right amount of milk in the proper size of container, I can froth the milk until its fairly warm, creating enough foam volume to completely cover the metal portion of the wand. This covers the air vents and prevents more air from being injected; so at that point, I can use the steam to heat the milk without building more volume and also create the whirlpool action needed to produce quality microfoam. Again, this isn't quite as good as I could produce with a standard steam wand, but it's pretty darned good and easy.
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on January 7, 2009
We have been coffee addicts since the early 70's and our last machine was an Olympic from Zabars circa 1990. The Nespresso Romeo is perfect if a bit messy to clean the milk frother. Always on, always hot, place the capsule, push the button. Simple, clean, unobtrusive, quick for one or a dozen. No grinders, no noise, no spilling. Learn to appreciate the differences in coffee with the many capsules easily arranged and inserted. We love the RomeoNespresso E350 Romeo Single-Serve Automatic Espresso Machine, Polished Aluminum
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