The Breville Smart Grinder Pro is a convenient device catered to a variety of coffee makers from drip machine, french press to espresso machine. The body is designed with brushed stainless steel. It also comes with other colors: cranberry red and sesame black. The 60 grind settings is a major improvement compare to its predecessor, the Breville Smart Grinder BCG800XL, which only has up to 25 grind settings. You can also set the grind time up to 2/10 of a second. Afterwards you can change the number of cups or shots, the grinder automatically calculates the grind time.
Let’s say you are grinding your beans between French press, espresso, and drip coffee. Once you have set a specific does set, you do not have to reprogram each time. the grinder remembers the duration in each range. When you change the number of cups, the timing adjusts automatically to match it. That way, you have more precision over the fineness of your ground coffee, depending on the brewer you use at home.
Another feature is that the Breville Smart Grinder Pro has a removable drip tray held by a magnet. It is easy for cleaning in case of an overflow. It comes with two portafilter cradles: 58 mm (standard size) and 50-54 mm. It also gives you a glass grind container with an air tight seal and volume markings. When you grind coffee, you can simply grind into the container without spillage.
The bean hopper has a 1 lb capacity and an airtight lid and a finger hold. When you remove the bean hopper, you can turn the knob anti-clockwise to lock in and stop the bean flow. This feature helps prevent spillage on your countertop.
Two other good designs are the Breville assist plug with extra fingerhold for easy & safe removal and the excess cord storage underneath the device keeps your countertop clutter-free.
Prior to grinding, insert beans into the hopper by removing the top burr. It is recommended that you start grinding with a single wall portafilter to maximize the potential of having a rich flavour in your homemade coffee. To begin, choose the right basket for your portafilter (usually 58 mm is the standard size). Based on your brewer type (i.e.: drip coffee or espresso), you adjust the grind size to generate a desired flow rate. With a double cup basket, you would set the cups to two shots.
For the grinding process, the smart grinder has the capability to calibrate the right duration based on your flow rate and dosage requirements. To start grinding, you can either press start or push the cradle in. If you leave the cradle inside, it would stop automatically after the grinding cycle is completed. Fresh ground coffee always looks like there is an overflow in the cradle. You can either tamper the ground coffee after or in the middle of the grinding cycle. To do this in the middle of the cycle, you can either press pause or by momentarily releasing the portafilter cradle. Simply insert the portafilter again and press start to continue with the remaining does. For manual feature, you can hold onto the start button or push in and hold the cradle. The grind will start the counter time. You can start and finish grinding at your discretion.
If you own a drip machine, the Breville Smart Grinder Pro allows you to grind the coffee directly into your drip filer. All you need to do is: 1) Ensure the cradle holder is removed 2) Adjust your grind size at about 50 in the filter setting 3) Select the number of cups 4) Place the paper filter onto the grinder tray 5) Use the start & pause button
The Breville Smart Grinder Pro is very customizable. When the ground coffee is too coarse, but you are at the coarsest level in the settings (or the opposite), you can calibrate the machine to your personal preference. You can just empty the beans out of the hopper, unlock the hopper in the top part of the grinder, and unscrew the upper burr from the compartment underneath the hopper. Then, you take the wire out of the burr. You will notice the numbers printed inside the burr ring. If you wanted the machine to be coaser, rotate the upper burr clockwise in the direction where the numbers are increasing. The larger the number the coaser the particle sizes. I would suggest you to make one adjustment at a time to test out the results. Once you have finished adjusting, you can reinsert the wire on the upper burr based on the red index mark. Then you align the red mark with the grinder body, and rotate until the burr clicks into a lock position. Note: please check to ensure the wire is reinstalled firmly on both sides of the burr.
The Smart Grinder Pro is at a good price range, but relatively well-made compare to other counterparts made with plastic casing. It is priced at $229.94, below $250, which is quite inexpensive. However, one shortfall is the power of the motor. It is powerful enough for different degrees of fineness tailored to various shot sizes and machine types. I would not suggest coffee drinkers with heavy usage (i.e.: making 10 cups+ of espressos each day).