Philips L'OR Barista Sublime coffee machine review

The L'OR Barista Sublime coffee machine lets you make two drinks at once and personalise the volume of coffee to give you just the right amount

L'Or barista coffee machine with two spouts
(Image credit: L'Or Espresso)
Reasons to buy
  • +

    Great value

  • +

    Easy to use

  • +

    Pod options

Reasons to avoid
  • -

    On the noisy side

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The L’OR BARISTA Sublime coffee machine promises to deliver barista-quality drinks at home. It has a compact design, and what sets it apart from similar machines is the double spout. This is great if you prefer a longer coffee, or if you want to make two espressos at once.

Another discernible feature is its ability to take two different sized pods (standard and double shot), which no other Nespresso machine does. Plus, one of my favourite things about it is that it lets you personalise the volume of coffee to help you create your perfect cup.

It's a nice-looking coffee machine for making a range of espresso drinks and it's very easy to use. There are 27 different L'OR pods to choose from, with varying tastes and strengths. It's currently reduced to £59.99, so compared to some of the best pod coffee machines on the market, it's a great price. Here's how I got on with it.

L'Or barista coffee machine with two spouts

(Image credit: L'Or Espresso)

In the box

  • Coffee machine
  • Taster box of pods
  • Instruction manual 
  • Discount vouchers for pods

l'or barista coffee machine box

(Image credit: Future)

Product specs

  • Coffee type: pod
  • Control type: manual button
  • Water tank capacity: 0.8 litres
  • Pressure: 19 bar
  • Pod holder capacity: 10 pods
  • Dimensions: ‎157 x 402 x 276 mm
  • Weight: 3.35kg
Millie Hurst
Millie Hurst

Millie is Ideal Home's Senior Content Editor and has been on the team for two years. With a background in SEO and digital publishing in the UK and US, Millie makes sure our website covers all the trending topics our readers want to know about. She spent time living in Italy as part of her Modern Languages degree and loves a good cappuccino or latte on the go or at home. When she isn't reviewing coffee machines, air purifiers and mattresses, you can find her looking around The Conran Shop and trying to complete her GoodReads reading challenge. She tested the L'OR Barista Sublime over a period of two months, using it every day before leaving for work and while working from home. 

Unboxing the product

The coffee machine came in a large, sturdy box with good-quality packaging and everything I needed to get going. I liked the matte black design of the machine and its overall aesthetic – it was made in collaboration with designer Khodi Feiz and feels compact and sleek. 

The slimline design was a bonus for me because my kitchen is very small. The packaging included some plastic wrapping but it was mainly cardboard, which was good to see.

L'Or barista coffee machine with two spouts

(Image credit: Future)

First impressions

It's not tiny, but certainly earns its place on my kitchen counter. It was easy to set up, with a plastic water tank at the back which slots onto the machine.

When I first emptied the pod reservoir it felt like I might break it, but I found you just have to be firm. The instruction manual says to flush the machine with fresh water before using it for the first time, which I didn't realise at the time. 

There's no water filter but you can buy a special descaler (more info on the L'OR Espresso site). As I live in London and have hard water, this is something I'll have to investigate. It doesn't rinse itself out between uses but they recommend you rinse it out once a month by pressing the Lungo button without a pod in it and collecting water in a cup below.

User experience

It's hard to exaggerate how much of a difference investing in the best coffee machines makes to your morning routine. Before reviewing the L'OR BARISTA Sublime I was using much more analogue methods: a cafetière on weekends and WFH days, instant coffee for those 'need coffee now' moments, and a Moka when I'm missing Italy.

I really like using it, and guests have used it with zero instruction from me. Also, the early morning stupor-induced errors I've submitted it to prove it's pretty fool-proof. I've turned it on without putting a mug underneath the spouts, and I've turned it on without a pod in it. All that happened was the drip tray filled with coffee and I ended up with a mug of coffee-flavoured water, inadvertently giving the interior a clean. 

To insert a pod, you pull the lever up and the pod chamber will rotate up with a satisfying clunk. Pop the pod in and push the lever back down. Press one of the three buttons on the top depending on the size of coffee you want, wait a moment and you'll hear it kick into gear.

How long does it take? I timed it, and it takes 1 minute, 28 seconds to make a coffee, including the time it takes to rinse and fill the water tank, find a mug etc. 

The pod bin holds about 10 used pods and is easy to remove. It's available in three colours, Piano Noir, Sunset Rubis and Satin Blanc. The water capacity is 0.8L which is enough for 3-4 long coffees.

You can program the buttons to give you the volume of coffee you want, which I've done to make a slightly longer lungo as I personally prefer a longer coffee. If I have time, working from home or on the weekend, I sometimes use my Nespresso Aeroccino milk frother, at Amazon for an extra frothy coffee.

Having tried the Nespresso Vertuo, I'd argue that it is quite noisy. I sometimes worry about disturbing my downstairs neighbours when I turn it on at 7am. That said, I haven't had hands-on experience with many pod machines, maybe some make a right racket.

The XXL Lungo pods which I liked most cost £12 for a box of 40. I sometimes use Nespresso-compatible pods from Aldi, which are £1.35 for a box of 10.

L'Or barista coffee machine with two spouts

By holding onto the Lungo button for a few seconds, you can get a nice long coffee like this *chef's kiss*

(Image credit: Future)

Coffee quality

I'm no coffee connoisseur and think there's a danger of getting so deep into the technical side of making coffee that you forget to lean into the pleasure of that first sip. I love a take-out flat white or latte as much as anyone, and had some amazing cappuccinos on holiday in Sicily last summer. 

So what I'm saying is, I appreciate a good coffee but my palette certainly isn't good enough to give you a detailed review on quality, flavours and aromas. The coffee is nice. It's strong but it's not bitter, and it has a decent amount of crema.


The instructions recommend using a soft cloth dampened with water and warn against using scouring pads, abrasive cleaning agents or aggressive liquids. I've found the exterior of the machine is easy to keep clean. I give it a wipe with a microfibre cloth, at Amazon every now and then and it looks fine. When the time comes for some descaling, it says to use L'OR Barista descaling agent.

L'Or barista coffee machine with two spouts

(Image credit: Future)


The Nespresso Vertuo Plus is the same price, £79.99 at Amazon, and has a similar design. Since it features in our pod coffee machine buying guide I think it's worth looking at both. 

While reviewing the L'OR Barista I tried out friends' pod machines, including the popular Nespresso Vertuo, which is currently £79.99 at Currys. The selling point of the Nespresso Vertuo is that it's quiet, so if you're hosting guests and want to make some after-dinner coffee, it's much nicer than having a machine making loud noises in the background.

Eco-friendly features

I haven't been recycling the pods so far, which I feel bad about, but there is a Podback scheme. You can arrange to get a recycling bag for your pods when making an order, then you can either see if you can just do kerbside recycling or if you need to drop them off at a shop. I'm lazy and have very little energy for this kind of life admin, but from it looks like I can go to the nearest Morrison's which is about 20 minutes away and get some free bags.

Should you buy the L'OR Barista Sublime?

I would definitely recommend the L'OR Barista Sublime to a friend. For me, it all boils down to price when buying anything for my home, and at £59.99 or £79.99 with 100 pods, I think it's a good deal. 

In terms of cost per use, if you buy the XXL pods in bulk, it works out as 30p per coffee. Sure, there's also a small cost of running it added to your electricity bill, and the cost of buying a descaler once in a while, but overall I think it's well worth it because coffee's one of those small but important pleasures.

If you've got cash to splash, you may want something with a more traditional design, for example, Dualit or Grind pod coffee machines are stunning in shiny stainless steel and bring more of a classic charm to your kitchen worktops.

I'm not someone who has lots of kitchen appliances but I would spend my own money on this machine if I had to. It's so easy to use and if someone took it away from me now I'd be really quite upset. It's just so nice to roll out of bed, press a button and get a good coffee. Zero faff and that's how I like it.

Millie Hurst
Senior Content Editor

Millie Hurst was Senior Content Editor at Ideal Home from 2020-2022, and is now Section Editor at Homes & Gardens. Before stepping into the world of interiors, she worked as a Senior SEO Editor for News UK in both London and New York. You can usually find her looking up trending terms and finding real-life budget makeovers our readers love. Millie came up with the website's daily dupes article which gives readers ways to curate a stylish home for less.