Baratza Vario owners... how are things?

Grinders are one of the keys to exceptional espresso. Discuss them here.
itch808
Posts: 12
Joined: Sat Jun 06, 2009 7:39 pm
Real Name: Mitch
Equipment: Le'lit PL041, Baratza Vario
Location: Boston / Hawaii

Postby itch808 » Mon Sep 21, 2009 5:38 pm

So the Baratza Vario has been out now for a couple months now, how are owners liking it so far? Any new reliability issues? Does anyone have buyer's remorse and wish they had opted for something else?

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weiv
Posts: 8
Joined: Wed Feb 25, 2009 5:37 pm
Real Name: Vladimir
Equipment: Silvia, Rocky, Behmor roaster
Location: Burlingame

Postby weiv » Mon Sep 21, 2009 5:49 pm

I love it.

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nixter
Posts: 747
Joined: Wed Apr 16, 2008 7:49 pm
Real Name: Nikolai
Equipment: Rocket Giotto Evoluzione, Baratza Vario, Zass, Stovetop, Turkish
Location: Vancouver

Postby nixter » Mon Sep 21, 2009 6:21 pm

Awesomeness incarnate.

On the way home from buying the Vario I had a minor panic attack wondering if I'd needlessly spent 5+ bills on a new grinder when I had a perfectly functioning NS Grinta at home. Turned out to be the best money spent on the this stupid hobby so far. All the stuff you hear about it are true. Small footprint, high quality grinds, low retention, quiet (I think Jon disagrees with quiet though). The timer is great too.

gj91
Posts: 48
Joined: Thu Jun 18, 2009 8:42 pm
Real Name: jim
Equipment: Andreja Premium / Baratza Vario / Mazzer Mini.
Location: chicago

Postby gj91 » Mon Sep 21, 2009 9:42 pm

Thanks for helping me blow $500 bucks too. I am going to buy one this week. I got a mazzer mini and not happy with it. If I would have noticed the price of the Vario I would have gone with it instead. Should have done more research. Trying to avoid the temptation of a Robur or K30.

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nixter
Posts: 747
Joined: Wed Apr 16, 2008 7:49 pm
Real Name: Nikolai
Equipment: Rocket Giotto Evoluzione, Baratza Vario, Zass, Stovetop, Turkish
Location: Vancouver

Postby nixter » Mon Sep 21, 2009 10:15 pm

I too was all set to go the used large mazzer route. I'm glad I didn't as those things are designed for commercial environments and that's way overkill for my needs as well as probably bit of hassle if you're making a couple shots a day.

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espressme
Posts: 1358
Joined: Wed May 31, 2006 10:47 pm
Real Name: Richard Penney
Equipment: Cremina67, Baratza Vario,Twist and assorted pots and makers
Location: Menomonie,WI

Postby espressme » Mon Sep 21, 2009 11:35 pm

Hi Gang,
I own a Mazzer and a Faema MPN. The Vario is my daily user. I could even use it for the charity gigs i do.
The big boys are very good but the Vario and my Cremina are a great pair. I got mine from Orphan Espresso.
-Richard
richard penney LMWDP #090,

dialydose
Posts: 286
Joined: Sat Apr 11, 2009 2:50 pm
Real Name: Jason Walters
Equipment: Vivaldi II, Vario, Super Jolly
Location: Tallahassee, FL

Postby dialydose » Tue Sep 22, 2009 11:14 am

gj91 wrote:Thanks for helping me blow $500 bucks too. I am going to buy one this week. I got a mazzer mini and not happy with it. If I would have noticed the price of the Vario I would have gone with it instead. Should have done more research. Trying to avoid the temptation of a Robur or K30.


I think he is referring to Canadian. US is only $429, and there are (or at least were) deals out there to get it under $400. Theft at that price!

With respect to my Vario, I could not be happier. Mine came perfectly calibrated from the factory (range for espresso to press pot) so I didn't have to adjust anything. I think as the burrs have seasoned a little it has helped. I now have mine set up for timed grinds for both my wife and I. She prefers slightly less coffee (about 1.5-2 grams less). The third setting is for my press pot grind. Timer is awesome. I also love that I can tweak the time/grind on the fly. Essentially as I need to grinder finer for aging beans I can bump up the time by a few tenths of a second or so to get the same weight.

Long story short, the more you use this grinder, the more you will love it. I keep the M4 at the office and use the Vario at home for all methods.

skilled in the art of grinding
Couloirman
Posts: 21
Joined: Wed Aug 05, 2009 3:31 pm
Real Name: Joe
Equipment: Ascaso iMini, french press
Location: Providence

Postby Couloirman » Tue Sep 22, 2009 1:01 pm

any complaints about it not being stepless? has anyone not been able to properly dial in the grind for a lever machine because the difference between grind settings is too large?

itch808
Posts: 12
Joined: Sat Jun 06, 2009 7:39 pm
Real Name: Mitch
Equipment: Le'lit PL041, Baratza Vario
Location: Boston / Hawaii

Postby itch808 » Tue Sep 22, 2009 4:31 pm

It's GREAT to hear such happy owners! One thing bothering me is I hear such great words and opinions but I haven't seen the grinds it produces. And since trying a shot directly made from it isn't feasible I looked up some reviews and found this one:

http://theotherblackstuff.ie/machines/r ... o-grinder/

From the looks of his pictures the espresso and french press grind are both disappointing! The huge clumps and static are more blows to the Vario. Is this guy's unit a lemon or are his results somewhat typical. If I go with a Vario should I expect a lot of dust in my french press grind. I haven't read anything that mentioned large flat burrs are incapable of producing a coarse grind w/o fines.

The odd thing is that in Orphan Espresso's google video of the Vario, the outputted grounds look so fluffy and static free. Is there this much variance in the Vario (lol!)????

dialydose
Posts: 286
Joined: Sat Apr 11, 2009 2:50 pm
Real Name: Jason Walters
Equipment: Vivaldi II, Vario, Super Jolly
Location: Tallahassee, FL

Postby dialydose » Tue Sep 22, 2009 6:13 pm

itch -

A couple things. One, his review was from March. Could have had a preproduction model, but certainly was before the upgrades. Could certainly alter his opinion. He clearly did not calibrate his. Also, consider the source and methods used before drawing any conclusions.