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Hearthware Precision Roaster - Ben Alpers's Review
Posted: January 15, 2002, 10:22am
review rating: 8.4
feedback: (0) comments | read | write
Hearthware Precision Roaster
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More About This Product
Arrow The Hearthware Precision Roaster has 33 Reviews
Arrow The Hearthware Precision Roaster has been rated 8.27 overall by our member reviewers
Arrow This product has been in our review database since November 30, 2001.
Arrow Hearthware Precision Roaster reviews have been viewed 146,214 times (updated hourly).

Quality Reviews
These are some of the best-written reviews for this product, as judged by our members.
Name Ranking
Java Man (Espressopithecus) 9.00
Richard Floch 9.00
Ken Wilson 9.00
Kevin Morgan 8.80
Bruce Harlick 8.53

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Ratings and Stats Overall Rating: 8.2
Manufacturer: Hearthware Quality: 6
Average Price: $120.00 Usability: 10
Price Paid: $120.00 Cost vs. Value 8
Where Bought: Sweetmarias Aesthetics 8
Owned for: 1 year Overall 9
Writer's Expertise: Aficionado Would Buy Again: Yes
Similar Items Owned: Poppery II
Bottom Line: Unfortunately, this is the home roaster I'd recommend getting.  It does a great job, but has serious quality problems.
Positive Product Points

Roasts coffee very well and consistently.  Push button control means you can monitor to the roast and instantly start cooldown without having to set a timer (why don't the FreshRoast and the CaffeRosto have this feature?).  Chaff collector relatively easy to clean. Big, glass roasting chamber makes it very easy to monitor the beans visually (it's also easy to monitor them by smell; sound is a bit trickier...see below).

Negative Product Points

Although I have had few problems with my HWP, many, many owners report a slew of difficulties, ranging from certain electrical circuits interfering with its electronics to motors breaking down.  Although HWP has very helpful customer service (in my experience), someone has to produce a more solidly built home roaster!  Finally, HWP is very noisy, making it a bit tricky to hear second crack (though I found that with a little practice I could do so).  A larger roasting capacity might also be nice.

Detailed Commentary

For all its problems, I love my HWP because it gets the job done.  The HWP does a superb job roasting coffee (at least the way I like it, which is generally fairly light).  I have also roasted with a Poppery II. This works fairly well, but it roasts very hot and fast, and has no cooling cycle (obviously).  I find the slightly slower HWP easier to manage and more consistent.  But I live in constant fear of its failing (I still have that Poppery II in the closet...).  One should not have to feel that way about an appliance.  The HWP has a timer, but I never use it.  Instead, I just put the timer to the highest setting and stop the roast manually with the cooldown button.  This gives me maximum control.  Indeed, the pushbutton control of the HWP is why I would still buy this product again if (or when) it fails. It's the only roaster that has such a control.

Since purchasing my HWP, a newer version of the HWP has come out (often referred to as the white, or Home Innovations, version).  But my understanding is that there are no significant differences between the new and old version.

Buying Experience

As always, buying from Tom at Sweetmarias.com was a wonderful experience.  I had some questions about the HWP which he swiftly answered.  And his tip sheets were very helpful.

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review rating: 8.4
Posted: January 15, 2002, 10:22am
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