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French Press Inconsistency - Possibly the Grinder
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Discussions > Coffee > Machines > French Press...  
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DexD
Senior Member


Joined: 28 Jan 2010
Posts: 29
Location: Ottawa
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Mon Oct 29, 2012, 4:57pm
Subject: French Press Inconsistency - Possibly the Grinder
 

Note: This is not quite a re-post of the subject discussed a short while ago here, so I decided on a new subject.  

Holding temperature, coffee/water ratio and brew time constant, I've been having consistency issues with my FP.  I'm not actually sure if it is the grinder, but considering the relative if not absolute precision (scale, including measurement of water in grams not volume, thermometer readouts of temperature, timer) of all the other variables, I am inclined to at least partially blame the grinder.  The issue I have is with unpleasant amounts of bitterness.  

The problem is recent, although I may be noticing it more since I migrated from CCD/FP/AP to mostly FP with some AP (CCD broke). In any case, I am getting the feeling that the FP grind is more flaky than before.  The only real test so far is reserving some of the grinds on paper.  Huge inconsistencies, with too many fines; the amount of fines annoyingly seems to also vary between grinds.  This is a CBM-18 grinder and I'm quite sure it was more consistent when new.

So: I am looking for a proper FP grinder.  Not something that will 'do,' but something that will hopefully be far more consistent and (hopefully longer lasting) than my current CBM-18.  Electrical or hand grinders would both be a-OK, I'm interested in something that will last more than a year or two.
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EvanOz85
Senior Member
EvanOz85
Joined: 9 Jul 2011
Posts: 268
Location: Lafayette, LA
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: La Spaziale Mini Vivaldi II
Grinder: Baratza Vario and Preciso
Vac Pot: Bodum Santos, Yama 5-cup
Drip: Chemex, Kone 3, Kalita Wave,...
Roaster: Hottop B, Behmor 1600
Posted Mon Oct 29, 2012, 5:55pm
Subject: Re: French Press Inconsistency - Possibly the Grinder
 

Baratza Virtuoso. Hands down. Best consumer grinder for French Press. Throw away that Cuisinart coffee smasher.

You can get a refurbished Virtuoso from Baratza for I *think* $199..maybe less $175. They are out of refurbs right now but keep checking this page to see when they have more available:
Click Here (www.baratza.com)
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EvanOz85
Senior Member
EvanOz85
Joined: 9 Jul 2011
Posts: 268
Location: Lafayette, LA
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: La Spaziale Mini Vivaldi II
Grinder: Baratza Vario and Preciso
Vac Pot: Bodum Santos, Yama 5-cup
Drip: Chemex, Kone 3, Kalita Wave,...
Roaster: Hottop B, Behmor 1600
Posted Tue Oct 30, 2012, 9:08am
Subject: Re: French Press Inconsistency - Possibly the Grinder
 

Check the page out now. They have the Virtuoso with Preciso burrs for $175.
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DexD
Senior Member


Joined: 28 Jan 2010
Posts: 29
Location: Ottawa
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Tue Oct 30, 2012, 10:07am
Subject: Re: French Press Inconsistency - Possibly the Grinder
 

EvanOz85 Said:

Check the page out now. They have the Virtuoso with Preciso burrs for $175.

Posted October 30, 2012 link

They don't ship to Canada, unfortunately.  I thought earlier that wouldn't be a problem -- just go down to my friendly neighbourhood border town and pick it up, no big deal.  However, Baratza grinders are not made in a NAFTA country, so by the time I calculate gas + tax + duty, it's not a useful discount over $240 I can get a new Virtuoso w/ Preciso burrs.

Since I am guessing you have the model, I am wondering how you are finding the consistency of the grind and its long-term performance -- specifically, any issues with losing calibration over time?
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EvanOz85
Senior Member
EvanOz85
Joined: 9 Jul 2011
Posts: 268
Location: Lafayette, LA
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: La Spaziale Mini Vivaldi II
Grinder: Baratza Vario and Preciso
Vac Pot: Bodum Santos, Yama 5-cup
Drip: Chemex, Kone 3, Kalita Wave,...
Roaster: Hottop B, Behmor 1600
Posted Tue Oct 30, 2012, 10:36am
Subject: Re: French Press Inconsistency - Possibly the Grinder
 

I can't personally comment on the long-term consistency of the grind since I've only had mine since August (I bought the Preciso which features an additional micro-adjustment for making espresso, otherwise the grinder is the same). However the Virtuoso is highly regarded by countless members here as being a top-notch grinder for FP and drip. Baratza also has excellent customer service, so if there would be issues later down the line I'm sure they would be able to get them sorted out in a quick and friendly manner.
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CraigA
Moderator
CraigA
Joined: 19 Dec 2001
Posts: 11,208
Location: Rexdale, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: PID/PressureMod 2001...
Grinder: BUNN FPG-2 DBC, Baratza...
Vac Pot: Bodum Santos manual, Yama 5...
Drip: Behmor BraZen, BUNN VPR-APS,...
Roaster: Refurb Behmor 1600, BBQ...
Posted Tue Oct 30, 2012, 11:04am
Subject: Re: French Press Inconsistency - Possibly the Grinder
 

DexD Said:

They don't ship to Canada, unfortunately.

Posted October 30, 2012 link

I used to sell Baratza rerurbished grinders for Canada but unfortunately that was phased out at the end of April..

I thought earlier that wouldn't be a problem -- just go down to my friendly neighbourhood border town and pick it up, no big deal.  However, Baratza grinders are not made in a NAFTA country, so by the time I calculate gas + tax + duty, it's not a useful discount over $240 I can get a new Virtuoso w/ Preciso burrs.

Actually $249.00 at the Greenbeanery, but you also get an additional $30.00 coffee credit so that's a great deal! {;-)

 
http://twitter.com/CoffeegeekCraig
http://www.facebook.com/craig.andrews.169

Excellent coffee doesn't just happen!
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DexD
Senior Member


Joined: 28 Jan 2010
Posts: 29
Location: Ottawa
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Tue Oct 30, 2012, 5:13pm
Subject: Re: French Press Inconsistency - Possibly the Grinder
 

I am all for a great deal, but the discussion currently going on at Home-Barista is making me very wary.
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redkiosk
Senior Member
redkiosk
Joined: 13 May 2012
Posts: 208
Location: Chicago Metro Area
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Illy Francis-Francis X1
Grinder: Baratza Preciso w/ Esatto...
Vac Pot: Someday, very intriguing!
Drip: Trifecta MB, Kalita Wave...
Roaster: A sure path to divorce!
Posted Tue Oct 30, 2012, 6:01pm
Subject: Re: French Press Inconsistency - Possibly the Grinder
 

Maybe it's the Virtuoso with the Preciso burrs. I've had the latest version of the Preciso (obviously with the Preciso burrs) for over 6 month . Just can't say enough good things about it. Used three times a day, every day. Consistent grinds  all the time. Take care!

Jim

 
The pathologically precise are annoying, but right!
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CraigA
Moderator
CraigA
Joined: 19 Dec 2001
Posts: 11,208
Location: Rexdale, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: PID/PressureMod 2001...
Grinder: BUNN FPG-2 DBC, Baratza...
Vac Pot: Bodum Santos manual, Yama 5...
Drip: Behmor BraZen, BUNN VPR-APS,...
Roaster: Refurb Behmor 1600, BBQ...
Posted Tue Oct 30, 2012, 6:07pm
Subject: Re: French Press Inconsistency - Possibly the Grinder
 

redkiosk Said:

Maybe it's the Virtuoso with the Preciso burrs. I've had the latest version of the Preciso (obviously with the Preciso burrs) for over 6 month . Just can't say enough good things about it. Used three times a day, every day. Consistent grinds  all the time. Take care!

Posted October 30, 2012 link

I've had mine for almost 2 years now, used twice & sometimes more each & every day with not ONE problem. Have had the Esatto attachment on it since Aug 31/11 & love this combo.

 
http://twitter.com/CoffeegeekCraig
http://www.facebook.com/craig.andrews.169

Excellent coffee doesn't just happen!
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jbviau
Senior Member
jbviau
Joined: 12 Jul 2010
Posts: 730
Location: Pembroke Pines, FL
Expertise: I love coffee

Grinder: Preciso / LIDOs
Drip: Trifecta MB / Eva Solo...
Posted Tue Oct 30, 2012, 6:18pm
Subject: Re: French Press Inconsistency - Possibly the Grinder
 

Add my praise to the heap for the Preciso and its grind consistency.

DexD Said:

I am all for a great deal, but the discussion currently going on at Home-Barista is making me very wary.

Posted October 30, 2012 link

I suspect there's something wrong with this guy's grinder. Not a typical experience re: that burr set.
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