Rancilio Rocky Doser Burr Coffee Grinder Review

rancilio-rocky-burr-coffee-grinder-with-doser

rancilio-rocky-burr-coffee-grinder-with-doser

Introduction

If entertaining people is one of your favorite past times at home, the Rancilio Rocky Doser Coffee Grinder is a great gadget to add to your list. Not only it grinds consistent espresso grounds quietly and at great speed, the doser version dispenses the pre-measured amount for a single or double shot at an easy pull of a lever.

If you haven’t been told that a great grinder can make or break your espresso brewing experience and outcome, let me repeat that it makes a huge difference in the quality of the shot. With a coffee grinder like the Rocky, you will be able to brew perfect shots that taste fresher and more flavorful with 2-3mm crema on top to fuel your “coffee high”.

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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Allow me to digress a little bit on two different types of grinders. One of the major features to look for in a quality grinder is how the coffee beans are grounded such as by blade or burr.

Blade vs. Burr Grinder

The mechanics are the same for both blade and burr grinders to grind hard and small food particles via two revolving surfaces powered electrically by a motor.

The differences, however, are in the quality of the grounds. A blade coffee grinder grinds the coffee beans by brute force that generates lots of friction and heat. The grounds are inconsistent in sizes and flavor and aroma less retained.

Conversely, a burr coffee grinder minimizes the heat and friction duo to fewer motor RPMs and thus preserves the flavor and aroma more. The grounds are more consistent and uniform in size and texture which is so important in making great espresso.

Another significant differentiator between the two types is that it’s almost impossible to have different consistency levels in a blade grinder vs. the versatility in a burr type to dial the particle size from very coarse to the finest based on your brewing needs. 

The merit in a burr grinder is correlated with the price. You may be able to get a blade grinder for under $50 but would expect to spend a lot more in getting a decent burr grinder. 

The Rancilio Rocky doser grinder is a burr type with a 50mm size powered by a 166 watts motor. You can easily carry on a conversation with the motor running at 1725 RPM with a noise level of no more than 77dB. 

The burrs are made of tampered steel that’s durable and efficient in getting the job done. It can grind up to over 7 pounds of coffee per hour. Obviously in a home use environment, it’s very unlikely you’ll have to grind a large amount unless you are hosting a big party.

Hopper Size & Material

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Identical to the Rocky doserless model, this one also has a 10.5 oz capacity that should comfortably hold half a pound of coffee beans at any given time. The hopper is made of heavy plastic with a blue UV protection layer to minimize the damage from the sun. Nobody is sure about Rancilio’s claim on this but a good practice is to grind just enough for your immediate use.

The hopper is not removable unless you disassemble everything. So changing coffee beans is not as easy as it would have been removed like other models on the market.

Controls

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There are 55 pre-settings from coarse to fine. These settings can’t be reprogrammed manually. Quite a few customers recommended setting the coarse level between 5 to 10 on the dial for espresso. The coarseness for your espresso is also depending on the freshness and type of beans. 

The increment is based on the so-called “stepped” method which changes from one setting to another based on the set points in the dial. This is contrasted to a “stepless” method where there are no preset points and the change is fluid. The stepless model is more desirable and costs a lot more. 

To change the setting, you need to push down the switch while turning the hopper from side to side.

Dispensing with Doser

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The significant difference in the functionality in this model vs. the Rocky doserless is it’s designed with a ground coffee container and dosing capability. Measured at 7 oz. in capacity, this container is divided into 6 pie shapes where each one holds a pre-dosed amount of 0.24 oz or 7 grams for a shot of espresso. 

After grinding is complete, the coffee grounds will flow out of the chute into the “staging” container. The coffee grounds from the chute tend to pile up by the chute instead of distributing evenly into the pie shapes. You might have to manually move the grounds around into each compartment. 

For a shot of espresso, swing the lever once toward you to dispense the coffee while holding the portafilter underneath the dispensing spout. The same routine goes for two shots or more. 

There is a design flaw in this machine while in theory a pre-dosed portion should be just right to fill out the portafilter basket with 7 grams, but in reality, some of the grounds are stuck in the chute shortchanging the dose amount. To remedy this issue, some users use a skewer to get the grounds out of the chute while others even power up a small vacuum

Two reasons you should get the grounds out of the chute each time. One is not to waste any good coffee and two is not to leave any grounds in the chute to get stale and “contaminate” the next batch.

This problem will be a lesser issue in a commercial setting as a large amount of ground coffee will be used up in any given day.

Housing Material

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The black and stainless steel color can complement any kitchen décor of the same color scheme.  It’s made of stainless steel with frame in aluminum. It’s sturdy and durable.

Additional Features

The only noteworthy feature is it has vibration-suppressing feet that reduce noise and vibration during grinding.

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How to Clean

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The Rancilio Rocky falls short in terms of user experience in cleaning. You’ll have to use a screwdriver to disassemble the guard in the hopper to access the burrs. Nothing snaps on or off. It’s a major ordeal to get those screws out. Reassembling takes a bit less effort. Of course, I am talking about periodical cleaning here where you’d sweep out the coffee residue and clean the coffee oil. 

After each use, you’d need to clean the Drip Tray and the external housing. There are tips and instructions on how to clean in the User Manual such as never immerse the unit in water, etc.

Included Accessories

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User Manual is written in five languages, English, Spanish, French, Italian and German.

Power & Cord

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  • Input Power (W): 140
  • Voltage/Frequency (V-Hz): 110/60

Dimensions & Weight

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  • Dimensions (W x D x H inches): 4.7 x 9.8 x 13.8
  • Weight (lbs): 19.2

Warranty

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Rancilio provides a two-year limited warranty on parts and labor.

Pros & Cons

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Pros

  • Made in Italy by one of the leading brands in espresso machine, Rancilio with commercial grade flat-plate burrs.
  • Well-constructed with stainless steel, hefty aluminum and plastic that can last for a lifetime.
  • The doser is conducive to making espresso from grounds to a portafilter in seconds to retain the freshness of the grounds for a quality espresso.
  • The consistent and uniform grounds make it possible to pull awesome shots.
  • The right hopper size for home use not to store excessive amount of beans for longer than necessary.
  • With 55 settings, you should be able to dial it to whichever coarseness that meets your needs.
  • It’s easy to use with a power switch, a button for adjusting the dial and a lever to push for dispensing. No need to get a Ph.D to operate this machine.
  • The compartmentalized slots in the coffee ground container helps “declump” the grounds for more even distribution.
  • It provides an excellent value for the money in this price range.

Cons

  • The chute is not designed with the right angle that leaves more coffee grounds in the chute for potential waste and getting stale. You’d have to manually “fish” out the residue.
  • The dosed amount is a tad short for each shot. You’ll have to dispense another half a dose to make it the right amount for a shot. A minor pain!
  • The Instructions are not the greatest. It may take you some extra time to fiddle with the machine to get a hang of it.

Consumer Reviews

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4.4 out of 5.0

The average 4.4 out of 5 star ratings is a true reflection of the Rancilio Rocky Doser Grinder. 93% of the reviewers on Amazon are very pleased with the machine and hence the 4-5 stars.

One customer was very unhappy about the hassle in disassembling the parts for cleaning as mentioned in the Cons section.

Price

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The Rocky with doser costs about $10 more than the doserless. It’s not cheap by any means; but many customers agreed that this might be the first and the last grinder to buy.

Summary of Rancilio Rocky Burr Grinder with Doser

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Is it worth it to spend over $300 on a coffee grinder? It’s a definitive “yes” if you’d asked a dozen of espresso enthusiasts. A good coffee grinder holds one of the very important keys in making excellent espresso. Some would even sacrifice a bit on an espresso machine in order to afford a great grinder. That’s how crucial it is in their mind.

I don’t know how many times I read consumers talked about how well it pairs up with the Rancilio Silvia espresso maker. If you are serious about becoming a savvy home barista, this grinder is an absolute necessity.

The efficiency, consistency and quality of the grounds will add so much enjoyment and pleasure to your daily caffeination no matter how you brew it. Head over to Amazon to find out more why 93% of the people rave about it.

 

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