A small high quality grinder, probably the best in it's priceclass.
Positive Product Points
- Small footprint, and low height, so it fits under any cabinet. - Cheap - Sturdy Design, will probably last a lifetime - Conical Burrs - Stepless grinds adjustment - Good looking (at least I think so)
Negative Product Points
- Noisy, I wouldn't fire it up in the middle of the night - Retains a lot of grinds, maybe 10 grams if you don't clean it out, a couple of bangs usually does it - The hopper is made out of plastic, so it's gives a bit cheap feeling, but it's still solid as a rock.
I've the black Ascaso i-Mini, which is a bit cheaper than the polished aluminium version, but still very sharp looking. The chassis is made out of what appears to be steel, which they have powdercoated with black semidull finish. The paint is rock solid, and so it the casing, so I can't really imagine this thing breaking. The hopper is made out of plastic, which could break, but it's thick enough to stand up to normal abuse without cracking.
It grinds really well, you have a VERY large adjustment spectra, and the espresso area is really wide. I wouldn't use this grinder for more than one task, since switching between an espressogrind and a dripgrind would take something like 20-40 turns of the adjustment knob. The grind clumps a bit, but they break up very easily. The chute collects a lot of grinds if you don't clean it, but a couple a gentle "bashings" on the side usually empties out most of the stray grinds, and the rest comes easily out using a chopstick for weekend cleanings.
It's a bit noisy, but it's so cheap that I can live with it, and it isn't annoyingly loud, it's just noisy.
Otherwise I'm really pleased with it!
Kaffecentralen.com is a finnish company based in Helsinki, which has both a "IRL" store and a webshop, and who offers service in Swedish, English and Finnish. They also offer a maintanceservice for La Pavoni and a lot of other brands of espressomachines. They were very nice to deal with, they sent my wares promtly, and accuretly. No mistakes or nothing. Only one thing to complain about, they do take their time responding to emails. Not very long, but not very fast eighter.
Three Month Followup
Still as good as new.
One Year Followup
Still working beautifully, a bit of a hassle to clean, but not too bad.