Get your toothpick out to remove leftover grinds...but otherwise a nice sturdy machine.
Positive Product Points
I like the "dial" on the grinder to select the type of grind. Looks great on the counter. Very Sturdy. Not too noisy.
Negative Product Points
Messy spout. Cleaning the spout is a little annoying.
After owning the Bodum Antigua for a little less than a year, I received the Retro Burr as a gift. Because of this, most of my frame of reference is comparing the two grinders. Also, I mostly make Vac Pot and French Press coffee at home with the occasional Moka Pot brew.
The grinder is sturdily built. Like many of the other KitchenAid products, it is heavy. When compared to the Antigua, the Bodum machine feels like a toy in comparison because of its weight and the fit and finish.
I like how the "dial" on the grinder is selected. Simply turn the bean hopper a "click" to the desired grind. The Antigua is selected the same way; however, there is no “click” that locks the hopper into place like the Retro, which makes it easier to select a repeatable consistent grind. Since I don't own an espresso machine (at least I don't count that little Krups one anyway), I don't know about the fineness of the grind for espresso, but it does produce a very consistent grind for making French Press and Vac Pot coffee, as well as for a Moka Pot.
Operation is simple. Flip the switch up to begin the grind and flip it down to stop. The grounds come out of the chute into the included marked glass. The chute is the main problem with the machine. It has a little metal flap over it to direct the grinds down to the glass, however not all of the grinds do not make it into the glass. Some do end up on the counter or on the machine itself. Do not lift the flap while the grinder is in operation because coffee grinds will shoot all over the place. When the grinding is complete, lifting up the flap is necessary to clean out the left over grinds in the chute. I have read in other reviews to use a toothpick to clean out the chute and that works out much better than the included brush. The brush is not small enough or stiff enough to get into the chute to remove all the leftover beans. It is better suited for dusting off the machine. There is almost a teaspoon full of grinds in the chute leftover in the machine. That is a little annoying and the main negative of the product. I’m not sure if a more enclosed receptacle for beans would solve the problem of the mess, but in comparison to the Antigua, there is still a mess to clean up after using that because of the static on that machine. In the end, I think clean up is just an everyday part of the ritual when making coffee.
The Retro is also quiter than the Bodum Antigua which is nice. Overall, I like the machine and think it is a definite upgrade over the Antigua. I use it as my everyday grinder, and now use the Antigua for grinding decaf on a rare occassion. Finally, if anyone cares, I received the red one. I hope I receive another one so I can have one exclusively for decaf.
Received as a gift, so the experience was very nice.
Three Month Followup
No changes...still works great!
One Year Followup
Still chugging along. I still mostly use the grinder for french press or vac pot coffee. No problems with the grinder. I did try to use it for an espresso grind to compare to my new Gaggia MDF grinder and could tell that it did not grind fine enough for espresso. I have read that others have made a modification to get the grinder to go finer, however I have not attempted it, nor do I plan to. Still very happy with it...I just wish I got black instead.