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Baratza Maestro Grinder - William Baguhn's Review
Posted: July 2, 2009, 5:02pm
review rating: 0.0
feedback: (0) comments | read | write
Baratza Maestro Grinder
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More About This Product
Arrow The Baratza Maestro Grinder has 90 Reviews
Arrow The Baratza Maestro Grinder has been rated 7.40 overall by our member reviewers
Arrow This product has been in our review database since November 30, 2001.
Arrow Baratza Maestro Grinder reviews have been viewed 477,304 times (updated hourly).

Quality Reviews
These are some of the best-written reviews for this product, as judged by our members.
Name Ranking
Jim Pellegrini 8.38
Bill Womack 8.33
Robert Kugel 8.00
Douglas Herring 8.00
T. Guilbert 7.91

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Ratings and Stats Overall Rating: 8.4
Manufacturer: Baratza Quality: 8
Average Price: $100.00 Usability: 10
Price Paid: $75.00 Cost vs. Value 9
Where Bought: Baratza Aesthetics 7
Owned for: 1 month Overall 8
Writer's Expertise: I like coffee Would Buy Again: Yes
Similar Items Owned: Krups GVX
Bottom Line: This is the entry level grinder I should have bought the first time.
Positive Product Points

Even grind.

Negative Product Points

Indicator mark on hopper is hard to see.
A bit noisy.
Power switch placement.

Detailed Commentary

After tiring of a Zassenhaus knee mill at work, I decided it was time to upgrade.  I wanted something that would do better than the $25 fall-aparts from the discount store, so the Baratza REFURB seemed to fit the bill.

It's a good, solid little grinder.  It's noisy, and that's fine by me.  It chews through the beans quickly and consistently.  I have never had a jam or a problem.

We measure beans, put them into the hopper, turn the knob (it's a nice power switch knob), wait for it to quiet down, and then make coffee.

The quality hangup - the little bump on the hopper which points to the grind setting is hard to see.  A silver permanent marker fixed that - the marking we added to the bump looks professional, and makes it much easier to see which grind setting it's on.

We use this grinder to feed a small french press, an aeropress, and a black & decker drip machine.  A setting of 10-15 seems to work right for the aeropress, 28 for the drip, and somewhere around 30 for the french press.  This is on the "set for coffee, not espresso" setting from the factory.

This is a refurbished unit.  It smelled like coffee when I got it, but was thoroughly clean.  Nothing was broken.  The unit came without a manual.  I expect this was a fluke.  Downloaded and printed a maestro manual, no problems.  Came with a cute little cleaning brush.

At the office, we all measure whole beans, then grind.  This makes it trivial to switch varieties and grind settings.  It definitely looks like to switch to a finer grind, one needs to either have it running or have an empty hopper.  Seems to retain very few grounds, which is great for switching grind size - seems to require almost no sacrificial grinding.

Turning the hopper to change grind size is trivial.  One half turn (180 degrees) of the hopper is the full range - full clockwise is as fine as it will go, full anticlockwise is as coarse as it will go.  A little more clockwise (past a detent, I believe) and the hopper is easily removed.

The location we have the grinder in means the power switch (on the "side" of the grinder) is in the front - we have the grounds catcher on the left side.  This is a very natural orientation for our usage pattern, but that means that the power cord sits up against the wall.  Having a second notch in the case, so that the cord can exit either the "back" (as current) or "left" sides would be helpful to people who want to use the grinder in this more natural orientation (in a cubbyhole, up against the right wall).

It's a big, heavy, fairly long power cord.  The outlet I'm going to is within 2 feet (60cm).  Mixed blessing, your mileage may vary.

Buying Experience

Baratza store - no hassles.  Punch in credit card number, get box a week later.  Price paid includes shipping.

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Posted: July 2, 2009, 5:02pm
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