This is a great grinder for limited budget or space. Its tops on style. Don't be scared off by (maybe over fussy) reviews
Positive Product Points
Great price, Great looks, and once its tuned fine it seems to be grinding well
Negative Product Points
None to date. With my limited online knowledge base, flat burrs may be limiting. And the teeth don't look as sharp as some.
I thought long and hard about this grinder. I was torn between it and the ugly mid price units available here in NZ. My budget, and minister of finance would not allow for a mini Mazzer or equivalent $400+ US ($800+ NZ) and also bench space is a premium and this is a nice compact unit.
It arrived from Nelson well packaged (padded out with a coffee sack even), and out of the box it has retro NZ appeal. KitchenAid is a brand synonomous with quality and durability. My Gran is on her original (one lifetime owner) kitchenaid mixer and it will never die.
I like the design, beans in coffee out, and the on/off switch and no timer is great. I'll never understand why you want a timer in the home. You'll only ever grind too much or too little with a timer.
The other great advantage I see is that you can either use the collection jar (especially if you're making 3 or 4 coffees back to back), or use it like I have been lately with all my adjustments as I move through 1kg of coffee in 7 days playing with my new toys. I take out the jar and the outlet is conveniently placed near the front of the machine and the grinds just drop neatly into the filter basket without a great deal of waste. This has been excellent dialling in the grinder, and practising my dosing.
This brings me to my only reservation, does it grind fine enough? I'm the proud owner of a La Pavoni Professional now, such a sexy beast. And I have had to set the grinder to max fine and do the recommended modification to increase the fineness. I'm about to adjust it again now its had some bedding in time, and I'll feed back on that later. But out of the box, my stream flooded though with almost no resistance, but now I'm getting nice (newbie) coffee with good resistance, and my crema is improving slowly (they do say it takes 3 months to get good on a la pavoni).
I now know that it grinds plenty fine enough for my machine. I stalled it once, had to turn off wait for it to cool and got one hell of a sneeze from the porta filter.
My initial, over read, impression was had I spent my money wrong. Now that I've stopped reading about this and other grinders, getting all paranoid, I like this grinder a lot. It's a great, stylish and so far reliable machine. I'm making nice espresso coffee and really enjoying my new La Pavoni Professional.
Some people talk about flipping the retainer spring and making it stepless. I didn't like that it means that the screw can get off square and rub the burrs. instead I just compressed the spring slightly with the retaining screw, and now it'll hold at anypoint just fine without rubbing.
Faultless, they didn't even charge freight. Pomeroy's know and respect the coffee industry and are old names here.
Three Month Followup
I still think this is a great coffee grinder for its price.
Its build quality is great, the glass hopper and catcher are great. I chose to not use the catcher but rather use it like a doserless grinder and put the portafilter straight under it.
It looks great and is relatively small, but does hold 250g of beans which is good for standard NZ supplies.
And its KitchenAid, I don't doubt that it would have been going great in 5-10yrs time.
However, I have just listed mine on TradeMe.... It's lack of stepless grind means its hard to dial in for different beans and weather. I've recently received my Mini Mazzer and already notice a huge improovement, although now I do have to learn all over again. I'm glad there is a big improoment, it's twice the price! And if $900-1000 (NZD) for a grinder is not for you, then I do think the kitchenaid is a good option.