A very solidly built product with nice proportions for the home environment.
Positive Product Points
This thing is really solid. The finish is heavy-duty, as is the construction. Individual elements (hopper, doser, body) are well-proportioned and attractive looking. It perfectly matches the Livia.
Negative Product Points
The doser is not removable for thorough cleaning, and the doser (the part with which one has most contact) is the least heavy-duty part of the machine.
Note: the price I paid reflects a 10% discount for purchasing the grinder along with the Pasquini Livia and drawer base.
I suppose many potential buyers for this grinder will opt for the Mazzer Mini instead. The MM gets great reviews and costs less than the Pasquini Moka. However, because the PM is not as tall and will fit under many kitchen cabinets, it is worthy of consideration, and, of course, Pasquini Livia owners who want a matching grinder really have no other (certainly no better) choice. And this does look like a sunny day on the Rive Gauche when paired with the elegant Livia and her drawer base(I swoon--excuse me).
I found it very helpful to remove the grinder's top burr for inspection before using it. That enabled me to see exactly how the machine works, where the grounds exit into the doser and how, and most importantly, what a "half click" setting means in practical terms. The machine is very easy to disassemble for cleaning (with the exception of the permanently attached doser container), and with the aid of a vacuum cleaner and a grinder brush (available wherever espresso accessories are sold), it takes about 3 minutes to completely clean--a little longer if you use soap and water to wash the top burr, hopper, and doser vanes. The burrs are heavy and seem easily up to the task of grinding 600 pounds of coffee beans before they will need replacing.
The Moka definately makes it easy to produce a precise espresso grind. It produces a very uniform output without dust, and it holds its setting perfectly for days of use if necessary. Even after several minutes of continuous grinding, the burrs were room temp. At its extremely low settings, it is perfectly capable of producing a Turkish grind, and I suppose one could grind for drip, vac, or French Press with it, too, but it is really better to use a lesser grinder (my choice is the Solis Maestro)for that and spare oneself the constant re-adjustment.
The bean hopper holds about a half pound of roasted coffee, and it is attractive and well made, except it would be nice to have one of those sliding closures on it that enable one to remove beans without having to turn the (heavy) machine upside down to pour them out. The hopper is made of heavy-duty plastic that has a slight distortion in it which prevents oil from showing. Both the hopper and the doser have snug fitting lids, which helps preserve coffee freshness and minimize static. The base of the hopper only allows about 1/2 of the setting numbers to be visible at any time, but most users would not be wildly cycling it from, say, a 24 to an 8 anyway.
The doser is no more ridiculous than any other doser on any other home machine. If one grinds seven to fourteen grams at a time, it takes four or five clicks of the mechanism to move them around to the chute. The doser lever is chromed and fairly substantial, and the vanes inside are heavy-duty plastic. It manages to sweep itself out very well, but it won't hurt to vacuum and wipe it down occasionally. The portion adjustment in the doser is just useless--either that or I can't figure out how to use it. (Even the glossy manual instructions are hopelessly vague.)
My Moka was delivered in January of 2002, and it does not have that "trigger" on the front of it. Instead, the integrated 54mm tamper screws onto a chromed post that protrudes from the front of the doser at a right angle to it. I don't know if this is an older or newer design or simply a "concept" model that accidentally found its way into a retail box. I like it, though. The small plastic tray that fits between the front feet of the grinder and extends out well past the PF fork to catch spilled grounds also doubles capably as a tamping mat. The thick, mirror finished chrome plating on the metal machine body is very easy to wipe down and doesn't show finger prints as much as one might suppose.
Unless I end up in my old age opting for one of those grinders that tamps the puck as it dispenses it, I will probably have the Moka for the rest of my life. That is fine with me because I like it very, very well.
Rick at Daily Grind talked me into ordering the chrome model instead of scrimping on the last $50 of this purchase, and I'm glad he did; it looks great.
Three Month Followup
I've now owned the Pasquini Moka grinder for a year--how 2002 flew by, aided by copious caffeine! I remain perfectly satisfied with it. The distance between "clicks" is very small and precise; this is a grinder you can definately fine-tune to compensate for slight changes in humidity, roast, etc. At one time the wave of praise for the Mazzer Mini made me wish I'd bought that instead, but I'm over it. The relatively low height, precision, and durability of the PM make me glad I went with it.