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Gaggia MDF - Walter MacEachern's Review
Posted: February 19, 2009, 7:43am
review rating: 7.0
feedback: (0) comments | read | write
Gaggia MDF Espresso
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More About This Product
Arrow The Gaggia MDF has 32 Reviews
Arrow The Gaggia MDF has been rated 7.79 overall by our member reviewers
Arrow This product has been in our review database since November 30, 2001.
Arrow Gaggia MDF reviews have been viewed 226,865 times (updated hourly).

Quality Reviews
These are some of the best-written reviews for this product, as judged by our members.
Name Ranking
A C C 9.00
B T 9.00
Lance Goffinet 8.88
Mark Babbe 8.20
Patrick T 7.66

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Ratings and Stats Overall Rating: 7.0
Manufacturer: Gaggia Quality: 9
Average Price: $249.00 Usability: 5
Price Paid: $299.00 Cost vs. Value 6
Where Bought: Amazon.com Aesthetics 8
Owned for: 1 week Overall 7
Writer's Expertise: I love coffee Would Buy Again: Yes
Similar Items Owned: Bodum Burr Grinder
Bottom Line: Requires time and patience to use properly. The doser makes a mess. The grind is wonderful.
Positive Product Points

Excellent and consistent grind. Very well constructed.

Negative Product Points

Lack of timer combined with an inconsistent doser assembly puts onus on user to develop compensating measures. Requires extensive testing before proper grind and tamp combinations are produced. No rubber feet (put a rubber pad we had to open jars under it and that workes fine). Pricey.

Detailed Commentary

This was a step up from our previous Bodum burr grinder (bought in a Caribou Coffee store) and I now see what all the fuss was about. There's an enormous improvement in grind consistency, as big a jump as when we moved from our Krups blade grinder (best used for spices). The Bodum finally broke where it rotates to change grind setting (cheap plastic tabs). This one looks like it will last forever.

I like to make Americano's with a doubel shot or a French Press a double cup, and my wife gets a double shot latte each morning, so we needed the ability to easily and precisely change grind settings. My first French Press at a setting of 30 was great, but I'm experimenting and suffering through variations on that each day. The Espresso grind testing wasted a lot of coffee. After reading on this site I tried a setting of 4 and the Gaggia classic just stalled. Same for a load at 5. We are used to really stomping on the tamper from old habits with the Bodum. I backed off to 6 and a less firm packing and got a black dribble. At 7 I got crema but only filled one side of the double shot. At 8 and a less aggressive tamp I got near perfection.

The machine had been tested with beans at the factory, but I don't think they calibrate. I'd advise that you get some cheap dark roast and plan on running many tests your first few days. If you're not patient (my wife) this can get really frustrating. You will need to take notes and post sticky notes for a while. It's hard to get consistent with the tamp. We use a heavy stainless tamper we got at WLL that makes it much easier.

The doser is not very useful. I have to time the grind as other reviewers have noted, about 30-40 seconds at 8 for a double shot, but this depends on the bean feed too. Lots of guess work and and extra grounds . Very wasteful.

Buying Experience

I always default to amazon for quick service and free shipping. It was here 36 hours after I ordered it.

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review rating: 7.0
Posted: February 19, 2009, 7:43am
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