If great price, real customer support, spare parts, and most of all, superior performance is important to you, than I highly recommend this unit. Mark, thanks for getting me off the fence with this unit.
Positive Product Points
The KichenAid KPG100, Pro Line coffee grinder provides a viable alternative to the individual who demands a quality grind at a reasonable price. Mark was spot on in his assessment of this product in CoffeeGeek Podcast 12.
Negative Product Points
This grinder was designed for the upscale kitchen. Its design is simple and lacks the industrial design of most European grinders. Yes, glass containers tend to be fragile, and the grinder lacks some industrial features, but it delivers the mail where it counts.
Out of the box, unit has to be redialed for proper espresso grind, no big deal, but user will be disappointed with results if process is not followed. Also, I've modified my grinder to provide stepless output. This is something it should do from the factory.
The underlying design and target market of the KP100 appears to me to be obvious, the upscale domestic kitchen. Its rounded, art deco, stature is intended to blend into the kitchen background. This in its self may be the main reason this unit has resulted in such a binary, love-hate following. This model supports only two controls, the on/off switch and a grind selection dial. Coffee beans are loaded in a 7 oz glass container and collected in a similar glass container below. The burrs are vertically oriented, and are easily adjustable. KichenAid provides a hassle free two-year warranty that includes door-to-door service. Contrary to what has been written, replacement parts are readily available from the Kitchen Aid national parts center. The unit comes with a well-written manual, an instructional DVD and a burr cleaning brush. The grinder provides no dosing capabilities or timers. While there have been a number of negative comments knocking the design of the unit, my personal experience has been quite the opposite.
A few posted comments indicate the grinder is unable to produce a grind suitable for great espresso. This is simply not the case. Using Intelligentsia Black Cat beans, I am able to produce a grind that results in a top-notch espresso with my Silvia. Out of the box, I tuned the grinder for a smaller grind. This process is extremely simple and analogous to disassembling a regular burr grinder during cleaning. Surprisingly, my first batch was ground too fine and it choked my Silvia. By the third pull, I was producing a nice, thick, tiger-stripped creama and a great tasting espresso.
The grinder was purchased online from AG Lock and Hardware; dba, aceharwareoutlet.com for $159.00, which included UPS, ground shipping. The unit was adequately packaged for shipping and was received in good order. In addition, the robust packaging from KichenAid protects the unit well. My experience was very positive.
Three Month Followup
Grinder has exceeded expectation since purchased. Grind consistency is stable from day to day and disassembly for cleaning is quick and easy. I've stashed the bottom decanter away in a kitchen cabinet and grind directly into the portafilter. One key advantage to using this grinder compared to my previous one is that the fine coffee powder that was left on the bottom of the portafilter and cup is gone. I assume this is due to the fact that the grinder is producing less residual powder. Overall, I'm very pleased with the grinder.