Here's the short answer on why this grinder is worth $479: It has the serious quality of a professional level espresso grinder, with precision adjustment to achieve the perfect espresso shot, yet it can switch to your favorite French press or coffee maker setting without losing your micro espresso setting. There's no need to keep two grinders around, and no frustration in trying to remember which setting brought you that ideal espresso shot, even after the power is turned off!
The Vario is a commercial grinder with 54mm ceramic flat burrs with a throughput of 1.9 grams per second and an innovative, macro/micro grind adjustment with 230 settings. The sleek contemporary design, small foot print, and adjustability for any style of coffee also make it perfect as a home grinder.
This function is also useful for coffee makers or french presses, as you no longer have to measure with a scoop. Simply figure out how many seconds of grinding produce the desired amount, then memorize the time with one of the three buttons designated for Espresso, French Press, and Drip Maker. This timer has 0.1 second adjustable steps (0.2 grams).
To make espresso pulling even easier, the Vario is equipped with a PortaHolder, a universally adjustable bracket for any portafilter that permits hands-free operation.
Easy to adjust the grind setting, taking just seconds to adjust. You can dial in for espresso on the "micro" side, then quickly flip between espresso, auto drip, and pourover on the "macro"" side without losing your espresso setting.
Compact compared to the Italian grinders, with a height of 14.5" instead of 16" or higher.
Grind for espresso or brew methods like auto drip and pour over (we find it hard to grind coarse enough for French press unless you calibrate it to be coarser).
Louder than the Italian grinders.
While we like how easy it is to adjust, sometimes it can lose adjustment, which is solved on the Forte grinder with the more rigid adjustment levers.
Not intended to grind large amounts of coffee.
The build quality is not quite as robust as the Italian grinders.