Encore Coffee Grinder by Baratza
Budget grind from a reliable manufacturer
Just received this item last week, and initial impressions are very good. Grind is consistent, and the unit does not heat up. I'm able to place my portafilters directly below the receptacle and grind only what I need.
Best feature: Very quiet compared to other units I've used. My sister-in-law has one of those fully automatic Saeco giant machines, and that grinder would wake the dead. Instead of a high-pitched whine, this unit emits a slow rumble/grinding noise. Much more pleasant to my 2yr old's ears (her comment: "Daddy - it not noisy"!). She is terrified of kitchen appliance and vacuum noises, so her endorsement is the most important of all.
Been doing espresso at the #8 setting. Works fine, but may take it down a notch (finer - 7 perhaps?). The unit has a pulse feature, which works great with portafilters - or you can just use the dial on the side to grind a bigger batch.
Overall, nice solid unit. Looking to see how long it lasts (keeping it well-maintained along the way).
June 2, 2014
What a treat this grinder is... not very noisy, smooth operation, the grind is SPECTACULAR... I am so impressed after trying four other burr grinders over the years, this is by far the best!!
May 19, 2014
Seems like a winner
I had the previous version of this grinder that finally gave out after like 10 years. This one is definitely more quiet and has better grind settings. I also like the new ability to remove the burr for cleaning. The unit seems really well built. I miss the timer from the old one but not a show stopper.
May 1, 2014
Great in all respects, especially for the price. Slight points off for:
1) quite loud (considerably louder than our little blade grinder, more like a pretty loud blender), although you'd have to go up a couple hundred dollars in price to find something much quieter,
2) the on/off switch is - circular? so there are four points around the circle - on-off-on-off. Simple, I guess but it seems like there could have just been one on and off, I don't get it.
April 25, 2014
Only had it a week, but it is perfect for my daily espresso grinds.
After 10 years of using a blade grinder, I was tired of getting different espresso shot results (and inconsistent taste and shot quality) and decided to buy a decent burr grinder. I purchased the Baratza Encore from Starbucks.com and received it in about one week. I have had the product for about a week now, and I use it every morning to pull 2 double-shots of espresso for my wife and myself. I grind directly into the porta-filter.
I dialed in a grind in just three tries that works for 2 different kinds of beans, and it is fine, consistent, and works perfect in my machine. It can go even finer for higher end machines.
I am so happy with this grinder, I am kicking myself for not buying in several years ago.
January 23, 2014