Bodum Bistro Coffee Grinder Review

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Introduction

Bodum Bistro Burr Coffee Grinder offers an exceptional value for an entry-level home use. The best touted features are the consistent grind size, quieter operation, beautiful color options, as well as less-static due to the glass coffee receptacle.

While it has 14 different grind settings for all your coffee needs from fine espresso to coarse French press, it may not be fine enough for a non-pressurized filter basket often used by serious espresso enthusiasts.

Table of Contents
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1. Introduction
2. Grinding
3. Hopper Size & Material
4. Controls
5. Dispensing
6. Housing Material
7. Additional Features
8. Clean & Maintenance
9. Included Accessories
10. Dimensions & Weight
11. Warranty
12. Pros & Cons
13. Consumer Reviews
14. Price
15. Summary

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Grinding

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The conical shaped burr grinder is 35mm in diameter and made from steel. The 160-watt motor is turned at 720 RPMs which is quieter compared to many burr grinders on the market.

Hopper Size & Material

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The hopper can hold 7.8 oz. of coffee beans and can be removed easily for changing beans and easy cleaning. It’s made of plastic with a rubber lid snugly closed on top to prevent jumping beans. One of the best features is the borosilicate glass used for the ground coffee container that reduces static which often results in messy grounds. The receptacle, with 11 oz. in capacity, is also closed with a lid on top to further minimize the spills and mess. The ground coffee is funneled through a small hole in the lid instead of a big opening often seen in many coffee grinders.

Controls

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Two switches to operate the unit, the Power On/Off button on the left side and the Grind On/Off button on the right top. Adjusting the dial on the settings of 14 in total is by turning the hopper guided by a red dial indicator from fine to coarse (left to right). Three main symbols represent Espresso, Filtered/Drip Coffee to French Press. Intermediate dials are for finer adjustment in between the main brewing methods.

Dispensing

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The coffee grounds are dispensed directly into the receptacle. Some customers have also tried to do so into a portafilter with good success. The grinding/dispensing volume is controlled by a timer set from 5 to 20 seconds. You’ll have to test to see how much it will dispense based on the timer. One of the major drawbacks in the design is that it’s not great for grinding a large amount of coffee in rapid succession. There is a 5-minute wait time between each grind to prevent the motor from overheating. This can be a major turn-off for some.

Housing Material

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The housing is made of plastic with steel frame. Given its price point, it’s not the sturdiest grinder for sure. But the benefit is that it’s light-weight with a small footprint that doesn’t take a lot of counter space.

Additional Features

The Borum Bistro is equipped with a friction-clutch to prevent potential damage to the burrs should a small stone is in the coffee beans. When it happens, you’d hear a roaring sound for you to turn off the machine.

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How to Clean

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As I mentioned that the hopper is easily removed for cleaning. You can also remove the top burr to clean up the coffee grounds with a soft-bristled brush. Keep up with cleaning of the exterior, lid, bean hopper with a wet cloth. The coffee container and the lid are dish-washer safe. Make sure you place the lid on the top rack in the dishwasher and secure it not to fall off to the bottom.

Included Accessories

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User Manual is written in 12 languages such as English, French, German, Spanish, Italian, Russian and Japanese.

Power & Cord

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  • Motor Power (W): 160
  • Voltage/Frequency (V-Hz): 120/60

Dimensions & Weight

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  • Dimensions (W x D x H inches): 6.1 x 4.7 x 10.8
  • Weight (lbs): 4

Warranty

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Bodum provides a 2-year warranty on defective parts and labor.

Pros & Cons

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Pros

  • Great value for a burr type coffee grinder
  • Compact and light-weight that doesn’t hog too much counter space if placed as a permanent fixture
  • Stylish design in five vibrant color choices (red, white, green, orange and black) to fit into your personal preference
  • 14-settings allow different grind sizes for various brewing methods and best for drip coffee, pour-over and French press.
  • Much quieter operation and less mess and spills to clean up
  • Timed dispensing so you don’t have to hold down a button while grinding
  • Very consistent grind time and time again
  • Easy to use with only two buttons and a snap to take off parts for cleaning
  • A cable hide-away to keep the counter tidy

Cons

  • Smaller burr size of 40mm in diameter which means a smaller grinder surface
  • More plastic and less metal make it less substantial than a prosumer coffee grinder.
  • It’s not fine enough to use a non-pressurized portafilter when making espresso but it’s decent for less-discriminating espresso makers.
  • The limited dispensing volume is not meant for grinding a large amount of coffee consecutively. The 5-minute recovery time can be an annoyance.
  • Inconsistent customer service has been reported by various reviewers with two extremes of experience from great to poor.

Consumer Reviews

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4.1 out of 5.0

78% of the reviewers on Amazon have given it 4 to 5 star ratings while the remainder is between 1 to 3 stars due to various complaints. The high praises are centered around the great value for a burr type grinder and the easy and quieter operation for everyday home use.

Some people are disappointed with the under-power of the unit. They might have expected a powerful commercial type of coffee grinder at a very affordable price point. You and I both know it’s rare to find a product with both attributes at the same time.

Price

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It’s a little over $100 on Amazon. To get a high-end burr grinder, it would cost you multiple times of the price for Bodum Bistro.

Summary of Rancilio Rocky Coffee Grinder

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All in all, the Bodum Coffee Grinder is a great value machine for moderate home use. It does an exceptional job for coarser grinds for making dripped coffee or French press but an OK job for espresso if using a pressurized portafilter.

It’s not designed for cranking pound after pound of beans for a big party due to the limited hopper size and dispensing capacity.

If money is no object, you should consider a step-up model such as a Rancilio Rocky Doser or Doserless Coffee Grinder which will last for many years.

 

For current price information, click on the button below.

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