Jump to content
2cups

Hello all - small grinder recommendations?

Recommended Posts

Hi all - newbie here. Just registering, have been lurking for a few weeks and found the forum very useful.

 

After moving in with my GF, I need to invest in some vaguely decent espresso equipment. I previously taken serious advantage of my old housemate's La Pavonia -great fun, but results were mixed (in a large part due to operator inadequacies!).

 

Bit torn atm - heart says a used Gaggia Classic, but head a Sage Barista Pro. The Sage looks like a nice package, more compact (worktop space is a concern), and have a suspicion would be more forgiving - however, I think I'd enjoy the scope for tinkering/experimentation with the Classic.

 

Bit concerned about worktop space - for the Gaggia option, would be nice to minimise the footprint of the grinder - something compact (

 

Ta

Paul

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Eureka Mignon, study little machine, keep an eye on the for sale thread on here they come up often or for a fair bit more the Niche Zero

https://www.nichecoffee.co.uk/


It doesn't matter how you get there it's only the end result that matters

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you don't have much space in the kitchen, you can consider a manual grinder, keeping it in a drawer.


GaggiaEnthusiast

 

Buying expensive equipment won't make you barista!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
If you don't have much space in the kitchen, you can consider a manual grinder, keeping it in a drawer.
Fair point. Would rather go electric if I can, but manual would be an ok plan B!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Eureka Mignon, study little machine, keep an eye on the for sale thread on here they come up often or for a fair bit more the Niche Zero

https://www.nichecoffee.co.uk/

Yes, I'd noticed the Niche. Looks perfect , but slightly over my budget atm. Future upgrade perhaps...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

Ok, to summarise where I'm at right now following prolonged research/agonising (see also my post in the 'wanted' forum).

 

My thinking has evolved slightly, along with my budget. Assuming I can pick up a Classic for £100ish, this actually leaves circa £350 from my overall budget (based on new BE) for a grinder. Spending a bit more would starve of the urge to upgrade for a bit - and buy cheap, buy twice, etc. Though having a bit of change left over for a tamper, knock box etc would be a bonus.

 

Requirements: small (see above), doserless, timer, easy to use (for other half) preferable

 

Contenders:

Sage Smart Grinder Pro - default option, seem to get a lot for the money (£130 new with discount code). Bit on the big size. Would probably keep me going for a few years, before succumbing to upgrade-itis eventually.

 

Eureka Mignon - small, timer, better performance, and more aesthetically pleasing than SGP. Specialita model with touch display and 55mm burrs tempting. Stepless grind adjustment potentially slightly intimidating, however?

 

Ruled Out:

Baritza Sette 270 - looked like a strong contender. However, terrible reputation for reliability and flaky support (in UK) - hence feels a bit risky for me.

 

Baritza Sette 30 - see above. Sounds like limited grind size adjustment problematic for dialling in.

 

Niche - expensive. Also, don't think I can be bothered with pre-weighing at the moment!

Edited by 2cups

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I sold my sage smart grinder pro on eBay a year ago for £80 so you’ll find good second hand deals. It’s about as compact as it gets if you’re worried about size though...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just for the record, ended up going for the Mignon Specialisa, new from Bella Barista and a £90 Classic off eBay. All in all, around the same price as a new BE. Now the interesting bit, learning how to use it properly :D

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Great compact set up which will certainly  get you going, welcome to great coffee. Time for some great beans now

  • Like 2

AKA Toffee chips

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
30 minutes ago, 2cups said:

Just for the record, ended up going for the Mignon Specialisa, new from Bella Barista and a £90 Classic off eBay. All in all, around the same price as a new BE. Now the interesting bit, learning how to use it properly :D

Congrats on your new set up 😁 let us know how you get along!

  • Like 1

2019 L-R with hand turned Thuya burr handles and toggles / 1998 La Pavoni / Monolith Titan Flat & Conical, MAX Flat on order  / HG-1 / Kalita wave / Stag kettle / OCD / Joey Skateboard Handle Pullman Big Step & matching stirrer / Wenge Handle Lev Tamp / Push Tamper / Puqpress / 15g & 18g vst / IMS 35μM / LDT / Barista Gear Titanium 12oz pitchers / LW Bean Cellars & Caddy / Decent thermometer / Acme Evo 150ml cups / Espazzola / Hottop / embroidered by me bar towels / in the cellars: Steampunk, North Star, Foundry, The Barn, HasBean, Coffee Compass / 6 gorgeous guineas / a dog / a very lovely husband 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Congrats on the new set up, I was nearly where you at after ~6y of using a classic paired with a rocky until i found an e37S which is a bit of a big jump haha. 
Specialita sounds like an awesome grinder, I spent many hours reading up on it too! Remember to look through all the mods available on the classic - most important ones being a OPV valve adjustment, steam wand replacement, and if budget allows a PID won't go amiss, @MrShadesdoes an awesome one, can vouch for that. After that, shower screen, new basket etc would be nice, but a nice upgrade. So far quite happy with my machine, but upgraditis is slowly setting in again, you'll see that as a common disease around here. Its very contagious and deadly!

Egglet.

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 12/05/2019 at 01:09, 2cups said:

Ok, to summarise where I'm at right now following prolonged research/agonising (see also my post in the 'wanted' forum).

 

My thinking has evolved slightly, along with my budget. Assuming I can pick up a Classic for £100ish, this actually leaves circa £350 from my overall budget (based on new BE) for a grinder. Spending a bit more would starve of the urge to upgrade for a bit - and buy cheap, buy twice, etc. Though having a bit of change left over for a tamper, knock box etc would be a bonus.

 

Requirements: small (see above), doserless, timer, easy to use (for other half) preferable

 

Contenders:

 

Sage Smart Grinder Pro - default option, seem to get a lot for the money (£130 new with discount code). Bit on the big size. Would probably keep me going for a few years, before succumbing to upgrade-itis eventually.

 

Eureka Mignon - small, timer, better performance, and more aesthetically pleasing than SGP. Specialita model with touch display and 55mm burrs tempting. Stepless grind adjustment potentially slightly intimidating, however?

 

Ruled Out:

 

Baritza Sette 270 - looked like a strong contender. However, terrible reputation for reliability and flaky support (in UK) - hence feels a bit risky for me.

 

Baritza Sette 30 - see above. Sounds like limited grind size adjustment problematic for dialling in.

 

Niche - expensive. Also, don't think I can be bothered with pre-weighing at the moment!

You will be disappointed in any timer fucntion in those grinders and more than likely weigh your dose out in the end .they are just not that accurate 

  • Like 1

I write a blog, it's nothing to do with coffee ...

https://rjwinc.wordpress.com

Instagram - rjw_inc

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Mrboots2u said:

You will be disappointed in any timer fucntion in those grinders and more than likely weigh your dose out in the end .they are just not that accurate 

Yeah, after a few weeks with the Mignon, can completely see where you're coming from. 

Still like the convenience of a hopper, not sure I'm ready for the Niche work flow yet... 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 08/06/2019 at 10:22, 2cups said:

Yeah, after a few weeks with the Mignon, can completely see where you're coming from. 

Still like the convenience of a hopper, not sure I'm ready for the Niche work flow yet... 

I'm on a similar path to you.

Went with Gaggia Classic and Niche.  I like the idea of putting 18g in, getting 18g out with the Niche.

Make sure you get your Classic modded to 9 bar pressure

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Yeah, after a few weeks with the Mignon, can completely see where you're coming from. 
Still like the convenience of a hopper, not sure I'm ready for the Niche work flow yet... 
Work flow for the Niche is as simple as it comes. Unless you aren't single dosing. In which case get a big burr ex commercial with a hopper.

Machine - Currently a Londinium R. Grinder - Niche. Tamper/distributor - Puqpress and Pullman Distribution and Big Step Palm Tamper.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 08/06/2019 at 10:22, 2cups said:

Yeah, after a few weeks with the Mignon, can completely see where you're coming from. 

Still like the convenience of a hopper, not sure I'm ready for the Niche work flow yet... 

just wondering how you got along with the specialita? I’m in a similar position as you were, have more or less decided on a sage dtp and Mignon specialita...but haven’t fully committed yet. One thing I did think was is the stepless adjustment too much for a total beginner. I noticed you’d mentioned this - have you found it intuitive? Also, is there a lot of retention? Similar to you i don’t really want to get into weighing individual shots...maybe I’m just being lazy!

Was looking at the sette 270 as well. Far too much choice once you get into this! 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, picalilli said:

just wondering how you got along with the specialita? I’m in a similar position as you were, have more or less decided on a sage dtp and Mignon specialita...but haven’t fully committed yet. One thing I did think was is the stepless adjustment too much for a total beginner. I noticed you’d mentioned this - have you found it intuitive? Also, is there a lot of retention? Similar to you i don’t really want to get into weighing individual shots...maybe I’m just being lazy!

 Was looking at the sette 270 as well. Far too much choice once you get into this! 

Hey Picalilli, good questions. Imo, it doesn't get a lot more intuitive , the touchscreen interface is pretty idiot-proof.

Once dialled in, I'm actually finding the stepless adjustment rather useful for making small adjustments to the grind. I would imagine it provides far more resolution than a stepped set-up. The only drawback is the multiple turns of the dial needed to go between espresso and filter settings (not sure if you're planning to do that, but something to bear in mind.)

Haven't noticed any retention issues (not that I've run any experiments or anything!).  Believe it to be pretty minimal, but no doubt the Niche is superior.

Like you, I'm a lazy bastard and was hoping to dispense with the weighing step. However, as mentioned by other posters, the timer isn't super accurate, so I've ended up weighing the coffee post grinding. Hoping that once I've got my technique down, and coffee dialled in I'll be able to dispense with that step.

I'll leave it to others more qualified to comment on whether it represents value vs a new Niche/used old Mignon/etc. The Sette looked super sexy, but the more I read about the reliability the more scared I got (maybe concerns have been overblown?!)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
On 15/06/2019 at 16:43, Planter said:
On 08/06/2019 at 10:22, 2cups said:
Yeah, after a few weeks with the Mignon, can completely see where you're coming from. 
Still like the convenience of a hopper, not sure I'm ready for the Niche work flow yet... 

Work flow for the Niche is as simple as it comes. Unless you aren't single dosing. In which case get a big burr ex commercial with a hopper.

There's nothing I'd have loved more, but I'm not sure my other half would have been quite so accommodating! For those with the space, I can see your point😀

In all seriousness, the Classic + Mignon set-up fits quite nicely in the corner of my kitchen. This accounts for c. 25% of worktop, and having space to cook food is also nice...

20190624_192254.jpg

Edited by 2cups

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
14 hours ago, 2cups said:

Hey Picalilli, good questions. Imo, it doesn't get a lot more intuitive , the touchscreen interface is pretty idiot-proof.

Once dialled in, I'm actually finding the stepless adjustment rather useful for making small adjustments to the grind. I would imagine it provides far more resolution than a stepped set-up. The only drawback is the multiple turns of the dial needed to go between espresso and filter settings (not sure if you're planning to do that, but something to bear in mind.)

Haven't noticed any retention issues (not that I've run any experiments or anything!).  Believe it to be pretty minimal, but no doubt the Niche is superior.

Like you, I'm a lazy bastard and was hoping to dispense with the weighing step. However, as mentioned by other posters, the timer isn't super accurate, so I've ended up weighing the coffee post grinding. Hoping that once I've got my technique down, and coffee dialled in I'll be able to dispense with that step.

I'll leave it to others more qualified to comment on whether it represents value vs a new Niche/used old Mignon/etc. The Sette looked super sexy, but the more I read about the reliability the more scared I got (maybe concerns have been overblown?!)

Thanks for the advice!

I had read similar things about the Sette. I actually prefer the retro look of the mignon - so think I'm still sticking with that.

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • About:

    Coffee Forums UK is the UK's premier coffee forum Started in June 2008 by Glenn Watson, we now have more than 22000 mainly UK based members, and welcome more than 3000 members and visitors from around the world each day! With strategic investment and digital expertise from the Jackson Lockhart team (Tait Pollack and Adam Bateman), we are taking Coffee Forums UK to the next level, and are delighted to share the journey with you.

    New Members:

    We are often referred to as the friendliest forum on the web and we look forward to welcoming you onboard.

    Terms of Use

    Advertising

    Coffee Forums Media Kit

    Buy Advertising Space

    Donate

    Get Your Supporter Badge (per year)

×
×
  • Create New...