- 1 Pros
- 2 Cons
- 3 Sleek, Modern Style and Design Features
- 4 Performance and Grinding
And yet another product from OXO that we absolutely love. Whenever we get one of these products to review, we love discovering and playing with the unique features that only OXO has and the burr grinder was no different. When talking about the OXO Conical Burr Grinder’s special features, we are talking about its integrated scale and 15 grind settings!
But before we get into all that, some people may wonder why they need a grinder in the first place knowing there are a variety of pre-ground coffees on the shelves for less. The answer encompasses a few factors: science, flavor value, and overall cost. Let’s take a look at how these all shake out and why this makes a solid, consistent burr grinder a good buy.
Why don’t we start with science? Coffee beans do have a shelf life. Even when you buy them whole, they have a use by date and this date is much shorter once they are ground because of oxidation, moisture, and CO2 Depletion. Through the oxidation process, the compounds interact with air molecules, which in turn releases the smells and flavors you enjoy. Oxidation initiates as soon as the beans are ground, and unless sealed properly, that flavor will quickly go bland.
There are some that only drink coffee for the caffeine, but the rest of us appreciate the innumerable nuanced flavors that coffee can provide. These flavors are developed by complex compounds that can be very unstable. Oxidation, moisture and CO2 Depletion are huge contributors to the flavor in coffee, but flavor contamination is not normally considered when thinking about freshness and storage. Flavor contamination is the odors of other items that are floating around your kitchen, infecting your ground coffee and can really destroy the taste of your coffee before you know it.
Let’s bring in the cost now. Ground coffee is generally more expensive than whole bean. If flavor, consistency and aroma of your coffee are important to you, then picking up pre-ground coffee is just throwing your money out the window. The first brew may be decent, but the more you open the container or bag to scoop more coffee, you’re risking more dilution of flavor. With a grinder, you only grind what you need at the time. If you are only grinding what you need, time is not much of a factor either. With all considered, over time they will pay for themselves.
Now that you have an idea why having a home grinder is a good idea, you might consider what kind of grinder you should get. You may remember our previous, short OXO Burr Grinder review in our top 10 favorite OXO Good Grips Kitchen Products. We’re going more in depth to give you more insight, so you can make a fully informed decision when purchasing a home grinder.
After a preliminary once-over, here are the initial OXO Conical Burr Grinder Review Pros and Cons:
Sleek, Modern Style and Design Features
For some, aesthetics is the first feature that they consider when purchasing a new appliance for their home, for others it is their last. Regardless, the OXO Burr Grinder Review would not be complete if we did not cover how it would look in your home.
The OXO Burr Grinder has a ton of functions, but doesn’t take up much counter space. At 11.1 in. long, 7.3 in. wide, and 16.4 in. tall, you will have enough real estate left for whatever other appliances you may need.
Large Capacity Hopper
This hopper is amazing! It can hold up to 16 oz. of beans, meaning you can pick up a bag from the store and pour them directly into the hopper. That’s enough beans to brew 12 cups of coffee, plenty for the average household You might think, but what about the oxidation, CO2 depletion and potential moisture issues? The hopper has a UV-blocking tint that protects the beans from the rays. A trap door is set on the bottom of the OXO’s hopper not only to make the grinding process less messy, but to help seal in freshness. It is also a great feature when you need to pull off the hopper to clean the burr grinder, as it keeps the beans from falling out.
Grinder and Size Selector
Nestled under the funnel hopper is the conical burr grinder and selector. The grinder is 40mm of stainless steel with a high torque/ low speed motor. With high torque/ low speed keeps from overheating the beans and creates minimal static that saves from a big mess. A detector is built-in to ensure that the grinder does not overheat, and to not move if there are no beans to grind. When there are beans to grind, all you need to do is turn the base that the funnel and grinder sit in to the corresponding number.
If you are a novice to grinding coffee and do not know how the different grind size corresponds to the type of coffee, here is a quick rundown. The finest grounds are espresso (though Turkish are more fine,), mid-size is good for drip, and coarse are for pour over and French-press. There are 15 grind size selections if you’d rather not have an espresso, but you’d like a dark coffee. Because why should everything have to be just one way?
LED Interface with Dial and Button Selector
The LED interface on the grinder measures out how much grounds you want to have dispensed by manual dispense, weight, or cups intending to brew. The turn dial selects between the options. The button selects the option and allows you to either manually dispense to your heart’s content, select how many grams you want to grind, or how many cups you plan to brew. The standard brewed cup weight to is 8 oz., which is the Specialty Coffee Association of America (SCAA) standard. If you want a stronger or weaker cup of coffee, there is an adjustor at the bottom lip of the interface.
This adjustor will give you 1-2 grams of ground, if you are on the cups setting and want stronger or weaker coffee. Once you have all your adjustments and settings in, all you need to do is press the button on the dial and go. Unless you are using the manual grind; once the desired weight or size is obtained, the grinder will automatically shut off. Thus, saving beans and potential ground waste.
Easy Clean Stainless Steel with No-Spill Grounds Funnel and Container
You may have the perfect modern kitchen that would never fathom to even have a speck of dust in it. Or, you have the raucous kitchen with constant splatters because you’re making the last-minute batch of cupcakes for a bake sale/ birthday party/ because I felt like having cupcakes at work, dang. There aren’t many surfaces that are easier to clean than stainless steel, it’s right there in the name. Not only does it look cool and futuristic in a neutral tone that will fit in nearly any home décor, but it lasts as well.
The scale may look like it may be a bit of a problem with the opening. If you remove the grounds container, the stainless-steel plate on the scale is removable for an easy wipe down. OXO made a genius decision when ensuring the openings of the funnel and grounds container were nearly flush. Ensuring little to no splatter and easy dispensing.
Performance and Grinding
When it comes to performance the OXO Conical Burr Grinder reviews well, for the most part. Yes, there are 15 grind settings. The fine grounds are great in consistency, but not quite fine enough for a non-pressurized portafilter basket. If you have a pressurized basket, then you are good to go! The grounds have great uniformity up until the coarser grounds. Then you run into some difficulty, in the coarse grounds, there tends to be fine grounds mixed in. This can really change the flavor profile of your drink if you prefer a French press or pour over. Without a sieve to separate out the fine and coarse grounds, it isn’t an easy fix.
With speed, even though the motor is high torque/ low speed; it does not take much time to grind. In a test, we ground 21 grams of whole coffee beans at a drip grind size. Around an 8 on the grind select. From hitting the button to the motor stop, the grinding process took all of 8.9 seconds. Other grinders have been tested taking 21 seconds for the same amount.