Krups 203-42 Electric Blades Grinder
(8 Epinions reviews)
Epinions Product Rating:
Solid, lasting value
Mar 26, 2010 (Updated Mar 26, 2010)
Review by amarajohns
Rated a Very Helpful Review
Pros:Economical, durable, efficient and nicely designed.
Cons:Difficult to clean
The Bottom Line: For the price, this product is an outstanding and unobtrusive addition to my kitchen counter.
This Krups coffee grinder gets at least two work-outs a day in our home, and performs beautifully.
Recommend this product?
With the lid on, the Krups coffee grinder weighs about a pound, sits about 6" high and takes up about the same counter space as a large water glass. It has a sleek, slightly oval design, and the workbowl walls slant toward the back of the unit. Despite its light weight, it feels solidly built.
It must be plugged in. The base of the unit sits flat; it does not provide a housing area for excess electrical cord length. The cord is of reasonable length. This model (203-42) has a black body and clear lid. It also comes in white (203-70).
FEATURES AND QUALITIES:
1. The sharp stainless steel blades make quick work of coffee beans - from course to fine grind, as well as whole spices, small quantities of nuts, and dried herbs. Mine is used mostly for coffee, from relatively course grind for a French Press to fine grind for expresso. I've also used it to grind peppercorns, various seed spices like coriander and cardamom, almonds and dried thyme. It handles all of these with ease. It is supposed to be able to handle grains, as well; I haven't tried that yet.
Some grinders have as much as 1/2-3/4 of an inch between the blades and the bottom of the workbowl, making it difficult to effectively grind all of the material. This one has blades that fit snugly near the bottom of the workbowl, avoiding the problem. The lid design seems to keep the material circulating back into the bowl for fairly even grinding, and fits tightly to the outer workbowl walls, preventing ground coffee from seeping down the outside walls, as some units do.
2. The only way to adjust the grind is by how long you hold down the grinding button on the lid. This may seem like a drawback if you are used to a grinder that has multiple settings, as I was. I found, however, that I quickly was able to adjust and come out consistently with the coarse grind I need for my French Press. In fact, relying on the settings on some grinders rather than your own senses turns out to be a pretty unreliable way to grind coffee beans. Be aware that if you are aiming for a coarse grind, you will end up with some fairly large pieces of coffee bean in your mix.
3. The lid fits snugly and if you wish, you can use it as a container to tip your ground beans into when you've ground them. It is easy to clean. The lid contains a safety feature to prevent the blades from operating when the lid is off, so you can safely clean the workbowl.
4. A more than adequate motor seems to power the gadget. I've never felt it get hot, sound like it was staining, or had it smell overheated. It may not be tough enough for an espresso stand, but for regular household use it seems sturdy enough.
5. The workbowl is stainless steel and not removable. Since the gadget is not immersible in water, this makes cleaning it a little bit of a chore. If you are using it exclusively for coffee, I recommend getting a pastry brush or small paint brush, and using that to brush the last of the grounds out into your coffee maker after each use and that's basically all the cleaning it will need for a month or two. If you plan to use it for other purposes, such as a spice grinder, you will need to clean it with a washrag or sponge, and dry it thoroughly before its next use. Getting all the coffee oils out to prevent contaminating your spices, and vice versa, can be challenging.
I suspect the only way to cause this device to fail is in the washing process, by allowing water to seep into the housing causing a short in the wiring. Therefore, I've chosen to purchase a second one for spices. I chose to go with a cheapo $10 model for that second one (Toastmaster), and it has given me some understanding of the better qualities of the Krups.
6. The unit is not exactly whisper quiet, but I've heard much louder. (It isn't so much the motor that makes the noise as the grinding.) If I'm up earlier than the rest of the household, I sit the unit on a potholder and wrap it in a dishtowel to muffle the noise, and that seems to be enough to keep it from waking others up.
7. The unit has a 90 day warranty. I haven't had any service issues since I bought it two years ago, so I can't speak to customer service.
I paid $19.99 for this. As I write, it is available for as little as $17.99. For the price, it is a terrific value.
Share this product review with your friends