• Aesthetically beautiful, looks quite sculptural. • Very pleased with the consistency of the grind. • Excellent build quality.
Negative Product Points
• No accommodation made below or behind the grinder for winding the power cord to shorten the length. What would be ideal would be a detachable power cord, giving me the option to use a shorter one. • Timer knob could have been designed to complement the sculptural look of the grinder a little better.
It was time to upgrade from my trusty old Baratza Maestro after 10+ years of loyal service. Baratza's customer service recommended the Virtuoso for "pour over" and fortunately, they had a refurbished model on hand so I was able to save a few bucks. I was worried about buyer's remorse because it's still a lot of money, but I can say that it made noticeably superior coffee to my old Maestro. I'm guessing this is because the Virtuoso grind is more consistent with less fines so there's less bitterness and more flavor comes through. I use the Virtuoso solely with the Clever Coffee Dripper and have found through a bit of trial and error that I like the #18 setting.
The Virtuoso is a joy to use. Everything about it looks and feels quality, even with all the plastic. This grinder is built to last (perhaps longer than me) and unlike the Maestro, it's heavy enough for one finger operation. When I push the front button to grind, it feels like I'm operating a powerful high torque, low rpm motor. It's a coffee grinder so it's going to be noisy but the low rpm and solid build quality keeps the noise within reason. The anti-static treatment does a great job of minimizing any grounds sticking to the coffee bin.
I bought the Virtuoso refurbished from Baratza. I live in Seattle and drove across the lake to Bellevue to save on shipping. The staff assured me that it was totally reconditioned, upgraded, and virtually as good as new. Very nice folks.
Three Month Followup
No problems encountered. But I only use it once or twice a day, so one wouldn't expect anything to go wrong in such a short time. I bought a 4-pack of 3M Command Medium Clear Cord Clips that mounts to my wall to keep the cord out of the way.