I had purchased this grinder in my first attempt to grind coffee beans for an ESPRESSO pump machine at home. I am lucky losing very little money, not being informed about grinders at the time of a blade grinder purchase. (I found the Krups Fast Touch Blade grinder on a clearance rack at a Barnes & Noble Bookstore for $10.00.) I could have done much, much worse spending $130+ on a Solis166/ Solis Maestro, or any other grinder currently under $155. Many professional grinders costing much more can be as terrible as a blade grinder paired with your ESPRESSO machine if they do not have a stepless grind adjustment. The ablility to finely tune the grinding mechanism for ANY ESPRESSO machine is necessary if you are expecting a usable ESPRESSO grind result. The exception being a manufacturer pairing a professional espresso machine with a professional grinder for optimal performance.
I only make ESPRESSO drinks (Espressos, Cappuccinos, and Lattes). The Krups Fast Touch Blade cannot produce an ESPRESSO grind with any consistency. Consistency with the grind is one of several important factors for making ESPRESSO.
If you are looking for a cheap home grinder, your money is better spent on a Zassenhaus Manual Mill. Although, you would have to be inclined towards manually turning a crank for your coffee using a hand mill, it does produce a very high quality grind. It can also be used for making very small/near powder, consistent /even grinds for ESPRESSO. (Zassenhaus Manual Mills grind very fast for coffee, but not fast for ESPRESSO) At the time of this review Zassenhaus mills come with a 10year warranty on the grinding mechanism and are in the $50-$70 price range. The aesthetics of Zassenhaus mills are matched with their performance (I own a Zassenhaus Mill. Read my consumer review at www.coffeegeek.com).
If you have money for coffee toys and want a very good entry level grinder that you will be satisfied with for ESPRESSO, buy an Innova grinder. It can be finely adjusted for any ESPRESSO machine. At the time of this review they can be purchased online between $155-$200+. The least expensive Innova model is not close to being cheap in performance for making an ESPRESSO. For $155 it is the only entry level grinder as of this review for making ESPRESSO drinks with any ESPRESSO pump machine.(Read my Innova I-2 consumer review at www.coffeegeek.com.).
If you want the best grinder currently available for home use to make ESPRESSO and COFFEE, buy a Mazzer Mini. As with anything, the best come with a $$$ price.
I know this review is not detailed with information about the Krups Fast Touch Blade grinder. There is not much to say about blade grinders except that they might work better for grinding dried herbs. I hope this review helps with your quest in search of a grinder, especially if wanting to create ESPRESSO and ESPRESSO drinks.
On a final note, if your are not interested making a minimum investment of a few hundred dollars for espresso equipment (capable grinder, capable espresso machine, tamper, frothing pitchers, ........), AND time for developing your Barista skills, you are much better off going to BIGBUCKS coffee house or similar, for a decent coffee drink.
Don't take my word on this, keep reading the reviews carefully then decide for yourself.
UPDATE! UPDATE! UPDATE! UPDATE! UPDATE! UPDATE! UPDATE!
July 14, 2003
As I noted above I found the Krups blade grinder on a clearance rack. It did not come with any instructions on the unit. The other day while department store shopping I discovered an open box Krups blade grinder but with instructions. Out of curiosity I scanned through the instructions and found within the first paragraph "Not for espresso use".
The instructions were very accurate. Grinding for espresso is not possible, it is also NOT capable of grinding coffee as well, and that was not stated in the instructions. Blade grinders pulverize coffee beans into dust and boulders and they are not capable of producing a Consistent/Even grind, which is required for making consistent great tasting coffee as well as espresso.
Blade grinders are a form of a "Food Processor" where size of the food being processed is not too important.
Grinding coffee to achieve taste requires precision that a "Food Processor" cannot provide.
That is why "Burr grinders" are a standard for grinding coffee beans not "Blade grinders".
Knowing that "Burr grinders" are the standard for grinding coffee beans is just the start. CHEAP "Burr grinders" (Melitta, Delonghi, Solis.... etc AKA. Department Store Grinders), do not have enough grind settings to finely adjust for ESPRESSO. If you are looking for a hint as to a good entry level grinder one of your requirements should include a worm drive adjustment, especially if you are grinding for ESPRESSO. "Innova" & "Mazzer Mini" are both "Burr grinders" w/worm drive adjustment. The hint I am giving is important for coffee but CRUCIAL for ESPRESSO and your espresso machine.
The Krups Blade grinder I own appears to be well made, has attractive design, designed to last, and takes up little real-estate on my kitchen counter. But the purpose of the krups blade grinder is to grind coffee and that is the area where it fails miserable.
I am not a coffee snob, but I do like my coffee and have spent a considerable amount of time researching coffee grinders before being able to write this review to share my experience.
I hope this review helps in your search for a coffee grinder.
UPDATE! UPDATE! UPDATE! UPDATE! UPDATE! UPDATE! UPDATE!