Starbucks Verismo V Brewer System Review

If you find Starbucks coffee intriguing, you will definitely love the Starbucks Verismo V. This brewer system is the closest you can get to the Starbucks for your shot of espresso or cup of coffee. This machine is an attempt to bring Starbucks drinks straight to your kitchen or office by giving you a sizable machine that creates all the basic drinks and the delicious foamed milk that makes Starbucks latte so captivating.

As a small sized gadget for your kitchen, the Verismo V will neither break your bank or clutter your kitchen. It is surprisingly affordable and compact. This coupled with the sleek design to make a marvelous piece that will definitely contribute to your kitchen’s decor.

Even though the Verismo V is smaller and lighter than its predecessor, it still brews its espresso and coffee from pre-packed plastic pods, something that would almost be unacceptable to people who like grinding their own coffee and brewing it using pour-over coffee brewers.

Design and Appearance

Many of the looks and design features trickle down from the predecessors, Verismo 583 and the Verismo 600. You’ll get the same 19 bar pump pressure, a removable drip tray and somewhere to stash your used pods.

A see-through water tank sits to the side of the brewer system and will hold 77.7 ounces of water, a great improvement to the previous models’ 33.8 ounces capacity.

The control buttons sit at the very top of the coffee make making them easier to access without bending. With its profile standing at 11” tall and 7.6” wide makes it ideal for the kitchen counter top.

Set Up and Getting Started

The Starbucks Verismo V brewer system comes ready to use. Attach the water tank and plug the coffee maker into a power outlet before lifting the cover to the coffee slot. Take one pod and open the pressure tab covering the bottom. Drop in the plastic pod into the slot, cover it up and press the button designating the espresso you want and the Verismo V will have it ready within 13 seconds.

Your espresso will have a thick and nice crema and its taste will mostly depend on the age of the plastic pod you used. Ground coffee tends to lose flavor over time hence older pods might taste less appealing. This coupled with the fact that one pod goes to one cup and you cannot cram in more coffee per brew means that you either have to buy pods with higher amounts of ground coffee or make do with the shallow flavor.

The Verismo V lets you choose the cup size instead of just sending the coffee into the desired 1-ounce cup. You can scale it up to 1.5 ounces if you want.

Brewing coffee is a bit different since you don’t really need the espresso thickness. You can change the volume from the default 7 ounces to an impressive 10 ounces.

The Verismo V Milk Frother

While the Verismo accepts milk pods, the machine will develop a sour smell after a while no matter how often you run the rinse cycle. The best alternative would be investing in a Starbucks milk frother and using fresh milk to create that creamy additive that makes Starbucks coffee so unique.

Alternatively, you can use the milk frother that comes with the Verismo V. Starbucks has come to terms with the fact that milk pods are a bad idea for your machine and your lattes.

READ ALSO: How to Use the Starbucks Verismo Milk Frother

Cleaning the Verismo V Coffee Machine

When it comes to cleaning, one of the most neglected appliances is a coffee machine. It is essential to keep these devices clean for various reasons, but most importantly, keeping your coffee machine clean ensures it lasts longer and you get the best coffee. If you own a Verismo V coffee machine, then we are going to show you the best way to clean it for it to last longer.

This guide comprises of a couple of steps that should be carefully followed when cleaning the Verismo V coffee machine. Depending on how often you use the machine, you can either follow these procedures to clean it daily, weekly, or when descaling.

How to Clean Your Verismo V

  • Fill the water chamber in your coffee maker with water and white vinegar.
  • Switch it on, let it brew until the chamber is half empty
  • Turn it off and let it sit anywhere between 20 and 30 minutes before you power it on again for it to finish brewing
  • Add some water again to rinse the machine
  • Take off the removable components, wash with a mild detergent, rinse and dry them with a cloth
  • You can use rice as an abrasive for gently cleaning the water chamber

How to Descale Your Verismo V

You can use various Verismo descaling agents for this procedure, though we are going to use one in our case, Durgol. If you are wondering whether you can use vinegar in this instance, then the answer is yes –simply replace Durgol with vinegar then ensure to rinse your coffee make until the vinegar smell is gone. To understand how to descale Verismo V, carefully follow these steps:

  • Ensure there is no pod left in the unit by lifting and closing the handle and then take out the water tank
  • Put one bottle (4.2 oz.) of the Durgol descaling agent in the reservoir and mix with 13.5 oz. fresh water
  • Return the reservoir and then put a bowl or a large mug beneath the spout and then turn off the Verismo machine
  • With the machine off, press both the power on/off and brewed coffee buttons at the same time for two seconds. Be careful not to hold them for too long or press them more than once
  • Hit the brewed coffee button to begin dispensing water – it should blink in white color. This rinses the water tank and should be repeated until the tank is empty
  • Remove the tank, rinse it and fill it with fresh water. Return it onto the machine and use the brewed coffee button to repeat the rinsing procedure until it is empty
  • Wipe the Verismo machine using a soft cloth to clean it out
  • Hold the brewed coffee button for three seconds to leave the descaling mode and your machine is ready for use

How to Unclog Your Verismo Machine

If your Verismo has no water coming out, you have a clogging problem in your hands. To deal with this issue, simply follow the descaling procedure. You can use any available descaling agent such as vinegar. To ensure your Verismo machine does not clog again, clean the machine regularly on a daily or weekly basis and descale it after every three months.

Your machine will be free of stains and hard water spots besides mineral build up and the coffee oils. Most importantly, your Verismo machine will produce rich tasting coffee for your home or office without any strange odor or funky taste.

How Often Should You Run the Rinse Cycle?

Keeping your coffee maker clean improves the quality of coffee you get from each brew. The rinse cycle cleans up residual coffee from the machine leaving it fresh for the next run. Running the clean cycle after a couple of brews is wise. The machine will remind you to run a rinse cycle if you stay for too long without cleaning it up.

To run the rinse cycle, place a cup beneath the drip nozzle and punch the rinse button. Ensure that the machine is well heated for an effective rinse. Always run the rinse cycle when you turn the Verismo V on after a no use period.

Verismo V Compatible Coffee Pods

The Verismo V will use standard Verismo pods. The flavors vary from brewed coffee to tea, espresso and the now unnecessarily milk pods that were popular in the discontinued Verismo coffee maker models.

Always buy your Verismo coffee pods in bulk to save on cost. You can save up to $0.19 per pod if you buy big 96ct boxes as compared to buying small boxes.

The Advantages

  • Gives an amazing blend of coffee, espresso, and tea at the mere press of a button
  • The provided creamer is a great move from milk pods. It will keep your coffee maker cleaner for longer
  • A bigger water tank means you can brew more before replenish the water tank
  • A small and compact design that makes it at home in your kitchen without filling out too much space


  • The pods will limit you. You’re limited to Verismo pods meaning that you will have to pay between $10 and $15 per dozen and stick to the flavors Starbucks deems fit for your coffee maker
  • Too many coffee pods to dispose of. This is not really environment-friendly
  • The espresso might pass out as too light and a bit flat to those who prefer a very strong brew

The Bottom Line

The drinks you get from the Starbucks Verismo V definitely remind you of the actual storefront drinks. It is a cool way to skip the long lines and the time wasting coffee run. You might find the brewing process too manual especially if you want to add cream and frothed milk. The KRUPS EA8808 does a better job by automatic the entire process as long as you have a jar of milk nearby. The compact size and reasonable price tag not only make it a great addition to your kitchen but also a great housewarming, wedding or seasonal gift to someone special in your life.

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