Baratza Virtuoso Plus Review: Why You Need A Virtuoso Coffee Grinder
Do you enjoy crafting quality coffee at home? The perfect cup is an art form and requires the right equipment and skills. To achieve the perfect drink, you need the perfect grind for your beans.
Enter the Baratza Virtuoso Plus, this grinder offers excellent style, durability, digital displays, and features but comes at a premium price. Want to know if this machine is worth the hype? In this review, we’ll cover the features, design, style, and performance of The Virtuoso.
Baratza Virtuoso Grinder Overview
The Virtuoso is a stylish and reliable product. It offers an excellent grinding ability, ease of use, and good value for the money. You will experience consistent grounds that are perfect for all styles of brew. Whether you prefer espresso, French press, manual brewing, or drip, you can make an expert cup with this grinder.
This grinder can instantly improve your brewing skills. But, can it produce a uniform, fine particle size? Let’s delve deep into the features and benefits of this amazing consumer appliance and find out if it is a good addition to your home.
Some of its key features include:
- 40mm conical burrs that provide a uniform grind.
- The DC motor and direct-drive gear reduction transmission provide consistent grinding.
- With 40 grind settings, you can set the grind range from 200 to 1200 microns.
- Speed control reduces heat in the grinder and ensures smooth feeding of the beans.
- 60-second timer for reliable and constant grind times.
- Easy to clean and maintain.
- Great for Coarse to Fine Grind Consistency.
- Designed and Engineered in Seatle, WA.
The design of The Virtuoso looks impressive. It has a durable build and feels solid, and the build presents a sense of style and elegance. There is a front-mounted digital timer, display, and dial for customized grinding. You can also utilize the 60-second timer for consistent grinds. The drinks produced tasted great and had fantastic aromas. After extensive use and experimentation, we thoroughly enjoyed our experience during this Baratza Virtuoso review.
✅ The Virtuoso grinder offers excellent design, durability, and ease of use.
✅ It can provide consistent grinding for all types of brewing, from espresso to French press.
✅ It offers excellent value for the money for experienced and new baristas. While pricey, you won’t find a better grinder in this price range.
🚫 Beans often popcorn during operation, causing excessive noise.
🚫 If your preferred drink is espresso, you may have difficulty fine-tuning the shot.
🚫 You can find other grinders that will produce superior results when producing finer grinds for espresso. Pricing may put this product out of reach for many consumers.CHECK PRICE →
Baratza Virtuoso Review (4.5/5)
We’ll provide plenty of in-depth information throughout this article, but here’s a quick breakdown of our thoughts on this coffee grinder.
We love coffee, and learning how to brew like a pro has been fun and exciting. This grinder has been a great addition to our morning ritual. It makes fine-tuning the perfect mug or shot simple.
The Virtuoso Plus can produce excellent, consistent grounds. The machine features a durable and stylish build and is easy to use. Cleaning is simple as well. The grind settings provide plenty of different particle sizes for your brews. While pricey, this grinder produces close to professional results. Overall, The Virtuoso is a great investment for any home, office, or kitchen.
What makes this grinder special? Sitting comfortably in between entry-level and premium markets, the Virtuoso provides excellent design, build quality, and performance. It is easy to use and clean as well. This makes this appliance an ideal addition to any home.
The wide range of grind settings will meet most users’ needs. We had an easy time brewing different drinks during our tests. Whether you are a novice or expert, using The Virtuoso is quick and easy.
Virtuoso Burr & Motor Design
The Virtuoso features 40mm conical burrs. A DC motor provides ample power for the grinding procedure. Speed controls regulate the rotation to 550 RPM, which will reduce noise, heat, and static generation during operation. You may experience some excess noise and popcorning of beans when grinding small batches.
Bean Hopper & Grounds Bin
The bean hopper offers an 8oz capacity, while the grounds bin only holds 5oz. This odd discrepancy is a slight annoyance and could cause an overflow of the grounds bin.
The grinder offers a sleek and stylish appearance. A sculpted metal top surrounds the front-mounted dial and digital display, and the plastic bean hopper features a smoke-colored facade. This appliance will look amazing in any home or cafe. We found the design to be a perfect complement to our office kitchen.
Build Quality (4.5/5)
High-quality materials and components were used to design and build The Virtuoso. The burrs and motor provided ample power and should provide years of consistent grinding. The stainless steel exterior, grounds bin, and controls are well constructed and feel great. Expect years of use from your appliance. Baratza also provides excellent customer service and support if needed.
Maintenance and Repairs
Many manufacturers will design their products to wear out and be replaced. Unlike other manufacturers, Baratza builds its products to last. Their products are designed to be maintained and repaired instead of disposed of. A serviceable machine will last much longer and will save you money. You won’t have to worry about replacing your device every few years.
You can find troubleshooting guides, repair videos, repair manuals, and parts online. Most repairs are easy and won’t require specialty tools. There is also a professional repair service available.
Ease of Use (4.5/5)
Virtuoso Plus Functionality
For daily use, The Virtuoso Plus can meet your needs. We were able to produce excellent quality drinks using the different settings of the machine. There is an analog collar to set the grind size and a digital timer and display for setting time. You can’t program the machine, but it will remember your previous settings.
Daily use should be no problem for most product owners. The motor and burr grinder will stand up to excessive use. Cleaning is quick and easy as well.
How do you Clean a Baratza Virtuoso?
During our tests, we found this machine to be easy to clean and maintain. Daily cleanup should be simple. There should be few problems with grinds making their way into the machine. The Virtuoso provides a removable top burr that allows easy interior cleaning of the machine. Regular deep cleaning and maintenance of your grinder will keep it running smoothly for years.
Performance/Grinding Ability (4.5/5)
So how does the Baratza handle daily grinding? After extensive use and many cups of delicious coffee, we feel The Virtuoso holds its own compared to other grinders at this price point. Its performance and grinding ability are above average for products in this price range.
There are 40 grind settings on the machine. You can consistently produce grinds that match your favorite style of coffee. From French press to drip coffee, you should have no problem finding the right settings for your drinks. The included quick start guide and manual offer suggested settings that are accurate for a variety of brews.
Per specifications, the burrs can create grinds between 200 and 1200 microns. This should be more than adequate for many coffee lovers. However, we did find some inconsistency at the lower end of the spectrum. While this won’t ruin your brews, some coffee experts may find the fine setting too coarse for a true expresso.
Grind consistency is quite good for a machine in this price range. You’ll find excellent quality and consistency for many brewing methods including French press, pour-over, and drip. It should be relatively easy to reproduce the same results every morning or for every drink.
Value for the Money (4/5)
The Baratza Virtuoso is a premium machine. It is designed for serious coffee drinkers. While it has a high price tag, it is incredibly durable and can provide years of use. If you drink more coffee than the average consumer, this machine might be right for you.
Based in Seattle, WA, Baratza specializes in coffee grinders. Since 1999, they have designed some of the best grinders on the market. They offer a wide range of home, prosumer, and commercial-grade equipment.
Their products are built to support the specialty coffee community. Whether you are a seasoned barista or just learning about coffee, they have products that will meet your needs. Their goal is to innovate with every product.
Customers can count on superior customer service and communication. They offer excellent product support and provide an in-depth knowledge base for their products on their website.CHECK PRICE →
Is it Budget-Friendly?
With a premium price tag, the Virtuoso plus may not be for everyone. It offers plenty of features for the price but may exceed your budget. A cost-effective alternative, The Baratza Encore is an entry-level grinder that makes fantastic coffee. It has many of the same features as its big brother for an affordable price.
Is the Baratza Virtuoso Good for Espresso?
While the specifications detail that you can grind fine enough for espresso, we don’t recommend it. Espresso requires precise measurements, and it can be difficult to dial the perfect espresso shot in on the Baratza.
For all other brews, we found above-average results. You may need to invest in a prosumer or commercial-grade product to achieve a perfect espresso.
Let’s Learn About the Baratza Virtuoso Grinder
The machine uses a conical burr grinder. Tried and tested, the 40mm conical burr and DC motor produce more than enough power. With 40 grind settings, you can adjust the grind size from 200 to 1200 microns. We had no issues dialing in different styles of brew.
This grinder is ideal for novice and semi-pro baristas. You will get great results for drip, French press, manual brewing, and many other brew techniques.
Why is Fresh Ground Coffee Better?
If you’ve ever watched a barista work, you will notice them grind the beans right before brewing. This ensures you can enjoy the characteristics and flavor of your drink. Previously ground beans can suffer from oxidation, moisture, and CO2 depletion. These effects can alter the flavor and aroma of your brew.
Oxidation will occur when your grind interacts with air molecules. During oxidation, aromas and flavors are released. A skilled barista grinds immediately before brewing. This is the best way to get the perfect drink.
While oxidation begins before you grind the beans, grinding creates more surface area, which releases more oxygen. This means pre-ground will lose some of its flavors and aromas. Over time, you may experience staleness from the grounds.
Moisture can play a role and affect the flavor of the grind as well. Moisture in the air can dilute your beans. Pre-ground has increased surface area and can cause more moisture issues for your brew.
Carbon dioxide is released during grinding. CO2 helps with the transfer of the oils in the bean into your drink. Grinding your beans right before brewing will preserve C02 and oils. You’ll have a cup filled with flavor and aroma if you use a grinder instead of pre-ground.
Ground coffee is susceptible to contamination. Odors floating around your kitchen or in your refrigerator can make their way into your drink. From onions to fish, a wide range of odors can permeate your brew and ruin its flavor. I doubt you would enjoy your morning mug that has hints of onion flavors and aroma.
Should you Invest in a Premium Grinder?
Not all grinders are created equal. A budget machine will produce uneven grinds. This can lead to bitter or poor-tasting drinks. Inexpensive blade grinders can produce acceptable grinds but cannot produce consistent and fine grinds. Upgrading your grinder is your best option to improve your brewing skills.
Grinding is a natural next step for any aficionado. It is the best way to ensure you always have fresh coffee.
Grinds can quickly go stale. A combination of freshly roasted beans and a fresh grind is the ideal start to any drink. You’ll want to use the best grinder that meets your needs and budget. Let’s learn more about the benefits of using a grinder during the brewing process.
Benefits of Using a Grinder
Having a grinder in your home is ideal for any true coffee-lover. Freshness can make all the difference between a bad and a wonderful cup of coffee. Exposed grinds will quickly oxidate and lose some flavor and aromas. Grinding beans when needed will ensure your coffee is always fresh.
The Virtuoso Plus is a premium grinder that uses a conical burr. Understanding the components of your product can ensure you pick the best grinder for your needs.
Burr vs Blade Grinders
Most coffee aficionados will swear by burr grinders. A burr grinder is comprised of two burrs, which crush the beans. This produces a fine and consistent grind that is suitable for many different brewing methods.
Blade grinders use a propeller to chop your coffee. It will be faster than a burr grinder but won’t provide an even grind. Most blade grinders are inexpensive but won’t provide the best flavors and aromas.
Burr grinders offer conical and flat grinders. They both create excellent coffee but have key differences.
Conical and Flat Burr Grinders
As the industry standard, conical grinders are energy-efficient and heat resistant. They are durable and can withstand extensive use. Conical grinders can create fantastic cups of coffee but don’t truly produce an even grind. A conical grinder can produce an excellent grind for an affordable price.
Some baristas prefer the reliability of flat burr grinders. These grinders force the beans to stay between the burrs during grinding. This is the best way to achieve a consistent flavor. Unfortunately, flat burr grinders are louder and use more energy. Flat burr grinders provide the best grind but at a price.
Most consumers will be happy with the performance and affordability of a conical burr grinder. If you are serious about your coffee, you can always upgrade to a premium flat burr grinder.CHECK PRICE →
Can the Virtuoso Make your Favorite Drink?
Everyone has different tastes. Not everyone enjoys a morning espresso or a cold brew. Luckily, with versatile settings, the Virtuoso will make most owners happy.
We experienced consistent results when grinding coarse to fine. Unfortunately, the machine lacks the precision to create super fine grinds you would expect for espresso and Turkish coffee. There were also noticeable issues at these lower settings. You may lose consistency, flavor, and aroma when attempting to dial in extra-fine particle size.
For a grinder in this price range, the results are fairly consistent with other products. You should achieve great-tasting coffee when using this product. If you are an avid espresso drinker, you may want to look at more expensive, prosumer, or commercial products to meet your needs.
- Cold Brew Coffee - Good Results
- French Press - Good Results
- Aeropress - Great Results
- Cone-Shaped Pour-Over - Great Results
- Auto Drip - Great Results
- Moka Pot - Great Results
- Espresso - Average Results
- Turkish Coffee - Below Average Results
Our Verdict on this Coffee Grinder
As coffee lovers, it was our pleasure to write a Baratza Virtuoso review. Grinders are essential to the brewing process, and we feel this grinder will meet the needs of most users. If you have been in the market for a premium grinder that will satisfy your love of a great cup of coffee, the Virtuoso will meet your needs.
It is a great upgrade to any entry-level product and offers features on-par with some commercial-grade products. Stylish and durable, this machine is a solid investment and can be part of your kitchen for years.
Unfortunately, due to its price tag, the Virtuoso might not be for everyone. The Baratza Encore is an entry-level alternative that has many of the same features for a lower price. If you are not worried about the price point, the Baratza Virtuoso is a great buy for newcomers or experienced baristas. You won’t be disappointed with your purchase and will enjoy delicious coffee for years.CHECK PRICE →