Thursday, January 5, 2012
In December 2011 we offered a fun way for people to win a selection of coffee gear from Baratza, if they ‘followed’ us on Facebook. We got lots of interest and participation and are delighted to say we have a roster of winners! It did take a couple of rounds to find the winner as the first person didn’t come forward, but here’s the final listing. Our thanks to all who participated and who continue to support Baratza! No doubt we will have some more fun giveaways like this in the future!
Grand Winner of a Baratza Maestro Plus, an Aeropress and a Baratza Counter Scraper was BEN BLAKE from Mount Vernon, Ohio.
Winners of Baratza’s brilliant Counter Scrapers were:
A new video has been posted to our YouTube account, outlining instructions for using the Vario-W. http://www.youtube.com/user/Baratzallc1/videos
Saturday, December 24, 2011
We made the recent announcement of the upgrade to the Virtuoso by the change in burr set to using the Preciso burrs, and the name change from the Virtuoso 585 to Virtuoso 586. Since then, many customers who own the Virtuoso have requested information on how they could make this upgrade to their own machines. Here is a .pdf file with step by step instructions on how to do that. It will also be posted in the SUPPORT section of this website, on the troubleshooting page for the Virtuoso.
Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions.
Saturday, December 24, 2011
By Kyle Anderson
We launched the innovative ‘grind by weight’ grinder, the Vario-W and accessory, the Esatto, at the SCAA in Houston in May 2011. At that point, they were pre-production models. Having put them out to test with various Roasters and users we went into full production and distribution in September. Since that time the number of users who have purchased these grinding solutions for their home or café has been amazing. We have been thrilled with how well the concept and the grinders have been received and how well they have functioned in a variety of settings. As with all new innovations, our grind by weight solutions have a few design features that raise questions for our support team. Below we address a couple of those.
Achieving desired grind weight
I want to share the “logic” we use to get as close as possible to the desired weight in these two weight-based grinding devices. We knew we would have to anticipate the desired (programmed) weight by some factor (i.e. we could not wait until the total programmed weight was in the bin to stop the grinder). Like most things in life, if the target is moving, you must lead it a bit or you’ll miss. After a lot of coffee grinding at espresso, filter and press pot, we picked an average “lead” of 0.7g. Our goals in designing the Vario-W and Esatto were twofold: absolute accuracy and repeatability. At mid scale for grind (filter) the absolute accuracy is very high. The flow rate of coffee thru the grinder varies from 1.5g/sec at espresso to 2.5g/sec at press (these are almost the same for Preciso and Vario). We know that on espresso grind setting we will come up about 0.2g shy of the target and for press, we’ll come up about 0.2g long. Though we miss the mark of absolute accuracy (at the two extremes), the good news is these values are VERY repeatable. If you are experiencing challenges in hitting your desired weight, I would suggest that when requiring 20.0g of espresso, you program 20.2g. Conversely, when grinding for 20.0g for Press, program 19.8g.
The Display on my Esatto or Vario-W is showing “EEE” or “out”, what do I do?
When this shows up in the display, re-Calibrating the scale will correct the issue. You will need a 200g weight. You can make your own weight if you have a secondary accurate scale. Put your (Vario-W/Esatto) grounds bin on the scale, add water until you reach 200g (total weight bin + water). Once you have the 200g weight, you are ready to calibrate the scale. Unplug your Vario-W or Esatto and make sure that nothing is on the scale platform. Plug the grinder in and while it powers on, hold buttons 1 &2. Display will come up with a value (approx 310-350). Press button 1 again (display will read “cal”) and set the 200g weight on the platform. Display will show “pas” and then show 200. Remove the bin, empty and dry it, place the bin back on scale and TARE. Your scale should work correctly at this point. If you get a number far outside the range of 310-355, please contact Baratza as the load cell is likely damaged and will need to be replaced.
Our goal is to make grinding by weight as easy, accurate and repeatable as possible. We are continually reviewing and revising our design, so we do want to hear from you with issues you have. Please e-mail us at email@example.com
December 13, 2011
Effective immediately, all new Virtuoso grinders are built with Preciso burr sets. We feel that it’s a great upgrade to a very stable, solid grinder. Please read our blog page, on this website, for the background to this upgrade.
The Virtuoso Upgrade Details: Effective December, 2011, all Virtuoso grinders have been built to include the Preciso burr set. With this change we are leaving the name of the grinder the same, but have changed the item # to 586. We also changed the pricing of the grinder to reflect the improved performance. The MSRP of the Virtuoso (586) is $249. The original Virtuoso retails for $229. New speed of grind is 1.5 to 2.4 g/sec. Old speed of grind was .8 to 1.1 g/sec.
Below are images of the burrs, so you can see the difference in design: