Breville BCG800XL Smart Grinder Review

breville-bcg800xl-smart-grinder

breville-bcg800xl-smart-grinder

Introduction

Breville BCG800XL Smart Grinder is indeed intelligent that automatically adjusts grinding time and dosing amount in cups for French press or dripped coffee or shots for espresso depending on the grind setting you choose.

As usual, Breville’s finer design touches can be found throughout the unit. These minor details set Breville apart from many competitors on the market.

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 burrs are 58mm in diameter and made of stainless steel with 25 settings for different coffee styles – from French Press, Percolator, Drip Coffee to Espresso. With the Dosing IQ technology, the machine knows how long and the amount it should grind in correlation to the coffee style. The finer the grind, the longer it takes. Everything will be on autopilot unless you’d like to control the dosing amount manually.

Hopper Size & Material

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With a pound-sized bean hopper, you can grind enough for one person or for a house party. The hopper is sealed with a silicone gasket to preserve the freshness of the coffee and is also equipped with a locking mechanism for you to remove the container without having to empty the beans first. This feature is only available in the high-end coffee grinders.

The ground coffee container is marked with cup markers and a lid to open for dispensing the ground coffee directly for drip coffee or close to store the coffee for later use.

You may also dispense the coffee grounds directly into a double or single-wall portafilter for making espresso by inserting one of the cradles provided by Breville. By using either cradle size of 50-54mm or 58mm, you can have the machine do the dosing hands-free. The same goes for dispensing to a coffee filter.

Below the ground coffee container, there is a coffee catcher which is just a simple tray to catch any spills and removable for easy cleaning.

Controls

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The backlit LCD screen displays the grind setting, number of cups or shots and customizable grind amount.

From left to right, there are three push buttons for Adjust Amount from Weaker to Stronger, Amount in terms of the number of cups or shots and Start/Cancel button. The grind setting is adjusted via the knob on the right hand side.

As mentioned before, 25 settings correspond to different coffee styles, grind size and dials in the setting as French Press-Coarse-Dial # 1-2, Percolator-Medium Coarse-Dial #3-5, Drip Coffee- Medium-Dial # 6-10, Espresso (Double-Wall Filter)-Fine-Dial # 11-20 and Espresso (Single-Wall Filter)-Extra Fine-Dial # 17-25.

For French Press, Percolator and Drip Coffee, the unit is displayed in cups as opposed to shots for espresso.

Dispensing

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You have the option to either use the programmed Auto Grinding where the machine will grind and dispense the selected grind amount automatically. Alternatively, you can Press & Hold Start/Cancel button or Portafilter Activation Switch for as long as your heart desires. Release the button will stop the grinding.

Housing Material

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The Smart Grinder is made of stainless steel with plastic, a typical signature design by Breville across its house appliances. It weighs 5.5 pounds and compact enough not to take too much counter space.

Additional Features

Covered throughout the review

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How to Clean

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Clean the bean hopper, coffee ground container and portafilter cradles with warm soapy water and dry them completely. Wipe down the exterior and the display panel with a soft damp cloth.

Cleaning the burrs helps getting consistent grinding results and prolong the life of the unit. The frequency is depended on the types of coffee beans. For example, dark oily beans need cleaning more often than medium non-oily beans.

Detailed instructions are provided by Breville on how to remove, clean and reassemble the burrs. Where Breville shines as a product manufacturer is in the ease of use and cleaning. A lot of thoughts have been put into the design so you don’t need to get a Ph.D to use and take care of the machine.

Included Accessories

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Besides of the major component parts in the grinder, it also comes with a conical burr cleaning brush and two portafilter cradles for 50-54mm and 58mm portafilters.

Power & Cord

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  • Motor Power (W): 165
  • Voltage/Frequency (V-Hz): 120/60

Dimensions & Weight

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  • Dimensions (W x D x H inches): 8.25 x 6.0 x 15.5
  • Weight (lbs): 5.5

Warranty

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Breville provides a 1-year warranty on defective parts and labor.

Pros & Cons

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Pros

  • Stainless steel burrs for durability and the upper burrs are easily lifted out for cleaning by a simple switch.
  • Adjustable grind settings for different fineness and Dosing IQ technology for different dosing amount based on the selected setting. Different options for dispensing into the coffee container, portafilter or dripped filter without much mess.
  • Large bean hopper that can be taken out without emptying all the beans.
  • Consistent grounds comparable to Italian made grinders.
  • Minimal noise that doesn’t have to wake up family members during grinding.
  • Great value for the money.
  • Excellent User Guide, YouTube Video and How-to Instructions by Breville.

Cons

  • Not the best for dark oily beans.
  • Only 25 grind settings.

Consumer Reviews

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4.1 out of 5.0

78% of the reviewers on Amazon have praised the product as great value for the money, high performing grinder and ease of use and service while others have had not so flattering experience. The common complaint is about using oily beans.

Price

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It’s priced under $200 and price does fluctuate on Amazon from time to time.

Summary of Breville Smart Coffee Grinder

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What Breville excels in all its small appliances are the smart design features and easy usability. The finger holder in the bean hopper lid for easy opening and closing and the same in the power plug are two of the small things that make a difference in a consumer’s everyday life. At this price range, the Smart Grinder is packed with features you’d find in a high-end grinders such as the removable bean hopper with a click of a switch. Adjust the grind size, dosing amount and brewing volume are as easy as pressing a few buttons.

If there is one thing that’s so crucial in brewing café quality espresso or coffee drinks, it would be a good quality grinder. Invest in one now and you’ll notice the difference.

 

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