Starbucks Verismo Coffee System: Hot, Steamy Technology with a Little Milk

Starbucks Director of Research and Development Paul Camera makes a cup of espresso with the $200 Verismo 580.

It’s rare when you hear the words “milk” and “technology” uttered in the same sentence, but that’s what Paul Camera, director of research and development for Starbucks, did as the company rolled out the Verismo System, its new line of premium one-cup-at-a-time home coffee and espresso brewers. At a launch event in New York, Camera and other Starbucks representatives showed off the $200 Verismo 580 and the larger $400 Verismo 585, which adds an LED readout, temperature control and other features. Both units can brew a cup of coffee in about 15 seconds.

The Verismo brewers use small coffee, espresso and milk pods that insert neatly into a slot at the top. Making coffee is as simple as adding water to the tank at the back of the Verismo units, inserting the pod into the Verismo, lowering a large lever and pushing a button. In practice the brewing process was quick and fairly quiet.

The $400 Starbucks Verismo 585.

Verismo System espresso pods.

Aside from developing systems that could deliver the right amount of water at the right temperature and pressure, a lot of the high-tech work in developing the Verismo System went into the milk, said Camera. He said the perfecting a dry milk pod with pure milk that could survive a year on the shelf took a bit of research and experimentation. He said the Verismo units are designed to rehydrate and heat milk without scalding it, thus ensuring a good-tasting latte.

Verismo 580 with coffee, espresso and milk pods.

The Verismo-compatible pods will sell for $12 per 12-pack, a Caffe Latte box including eight espresso pods and eight milk pods will sell for $13 while a 12-pack of milk pods will be priced at $10. The coffee selection includes Veranda, House Blend, Pike Place Roast and Caffe Verona while the espresso choices include Espresso Guatemala, Espresso Roast and Decaf Espresso Roast.

The Verismo units will be sold at stores such as Macy’s and Williams-Sonoma and will be sold at Starbucks stores starting Oct. 16.

Text, images and video Copyright 2012 Robert S. Anthony,

Stadium Circle Features,


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