American Senseo Inferior to European Senseo -- Why?


New member
Mar 11, 2006
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I don't understand it. Before Senseo was released in the U.S., I bought a Senseo machine from Germany on eBay and used it in the U.S. with an electricity transformer/converter. I loved the coffee it produced! When Senseo was released here, I quickly bought two units, so my wife and I could have a machine at work. Strangely, neither American-made machine produced coffee that tasted like the German model. There are two main differences: (1) the coffee from the American machine tasted bitter and stale; (2) the "crema" from the American machine was foamy, rather than creamy like the German machine. I used the exact same Douwe Egberts pods, from Belgium, so the difference is not the coffee. I even tried using the same water supply, and that didn't matter either. Something is different about the machines, but I don't know what. I'm hoping someone else has experienced this and knows whether the issue has been fixed or if there's something I can do to fix it, as my German machine is starting to leak and may need to be replaced soon. Any suggestions?
Two possibilities

1. It could be a design issue. American and European markets are different. They tweak the machines to suit the tastes of the market. For better or worse, American and European coffee markets are different. Solution: move to Europe

2. You have a defective machine or one slightly out of specifications. With the ramp up in volume for the US launch, there might have been some gaps in product quality. There are reports of a 30 percent return rate on Senseo machines. Solution: find someone who has a Senseo and try their machine to see if you get the same results.