HomeRoast Digest


Topic: Solis Maestro Plus (23 msgs / 706 lines)
1) From: Peter Barnes
Hey all,
I know it is panned as an espresso grinder, but I've been planning to 
pick up the Solis Maestro to grind my drip coffee, and then get a Rocky 
when I finally make the move to espresso.  But wandering around 
coffeegeek a bit, I noticed that Baratza is releasing the Solis Maestro 
Plus, which is supposedly heavier and better.  I'm just curious if 
anyone knows anything about it, or has heard anything other than what 
Baratza has on the website...http://www.baratza.com/html/121I wouldn't want to buy from them unless I have to, so I'm hoping that 
Tom might carry it, or at least have an opinion on it.  But if it looks 
like it will be better, perhaps I should hold off a month or two on my 
purchase.  Any thoughts?
cheers
peter

2) From: John Blumel
On Fri, 13 Jun 2003 16:52:43 -0400, Peter Barnes wrote:
<Snip>
Based on the description, it looks like it would be better for Syphon,
Drip & Press brewing than the current Maestro with more choice of grind
on the course end. It seems a bit more expensive than the current
Maestro on SM's but to me it would be worth it. 
Even though the Maestro is not considered quite the thing for espresso
grinding -- compared to the Rocky or Mazzer Mini -- you can use it.
Mainly it doesn't have as fine an adjustment so it's harder to get the
combination of grind and tamp correct. It may also be less consistent
in the final particle size. However you could use it for espresso if
you don't want to invest in an espresso machine and grinder all at once
-- I used my Solis 166 (the great-grandfather of the Maestro Plus) for
a couple of weeks while waiting a Mazzer Mini to arrive and, while the
Mini was definitely an improvement, the Solis was OK for milk based
drinks.
I'm keeping the 166 around for Syphon and Press coffee and would
definitely by a Maestro Plus for this purpose if the 166 died.
John Blumel

3) From: Peter Barnes
yeah, that pretty much sums up my thoughts about its purpose, and how I 
would use it as well...
John Blumel wrote:
<Snip>

4) From: jim gundlach
The problem with the Solis grinders has been the burr mounting system.  
I cannot tell from the pictures if this has been improved.  Doubling 
the weight suggests they may well have.  I would hope the weight has 
been added as a consequence of improving the structural integrity of 
the unit, not just to "add stability".
Jim Gundlach
On Friday, June 13, 2003, at 03:52 PM, Peter Barnes wrote:
<Snip>

5) From: Angelo
I purchased a Maestro and sent it back within a week because 1) it was too 
noisy - I was used to the 166...2) I could not get it to grind fine enough 
for espresso.. I don't see how they can get it down to Turkish...
I have to be fair, though. Baratza offered to "tweak" it for me, but I 
didn't feel up to the hassle. I could have done it myself, but was told I 
would void the warranty...I subsequently got in on the group buy for a 
Rocky and am now a very happy camper...:-)
Make sure you can return it, and tell them you want the range extended more 
to the bottom...
Ciao.
Angelo
<Snip>

6) From: Tom & Maria
We will have these as soon as they come out. My review for them will 
be very straightforward - it's the same mill as the current Maestro 
-same burrset, same motor, same mounting. The difference is a wider 
grind range adjustment (without opening it up and recallibrating 
-basically 40 stops covering the coarse range better, and a metal 
bottom to stabilize it and give it some heft. BTW: On 6/20 the 
Maestro regular will go down to $109 in price too! So hold off for a 
bit...
Tom
<Snip>
--
                   "Great coffee comes from tiny roasters"
            Sweet Maria's Home Coffee Roasting  -  Tom & Maria
		1455 64th Street Emeryville CA 94608
                      http://www.sweetmarias.com

7) From: miKe mcKoffee

8) From: Stanley Erickson
I have been in lurk mode for months, home roasting about the same.  Time 
to come out of the "mode closet" for a moment.  I read the list every 
night with a fresh cup of home roasted brewed the the vac pot for Tom 
and Maria's.  Still in the experimental stage with my IRoast and working 
on a stash, again from Tom and Maria's.  Just wanted to put in my 2 cups 
worth regarding the Solis Maestro Plus.  I did quit a bit of research 
and settled on it.  I love it.  Easy to clean, grinds just the way I 
want (more than adequate for espresso) and the chute has never clogged.  
One can remove the bin and grind direct to a portafilter or basket.  I 
think it is an excellent choice at the price.
Stanley (just beginning the trek)

9) From: R.N.Kyle
Welcome to the unlurking mode Stanley, I had a Solis Plus and thought it =
was
a nice grinder for the price, I have since move up to the Mazzer Mini, =
and
think it is a grinder that will last a life time.
RK

10) From:
Welcome, Stanley-
My story is yours, but for a little editing:
I started the home roasting gig about thirty years ago, with a Melitta 
AromaRoast and Kenya AA beans I got from Bill Boyer at Boyer Coffee
Co.inDenver.
I was clueless. The AromaRoast was simple like a FreshRoast sans the 
see-through glass chamber. With no visual clues, I thought the smoke and 
snapping meant I was on the verge of incinerating the beans, but not a bad=
 
roast actually.
Of course I thought I should grind (in my blade mill- still works fine for =
a 
friend) as soon as they cooled on a cookie sheet. Age the beans? 
That's how they get old and stale. Roast-cool-grind, I thought. And I knew=
 
nothing of the optimum brew time- the 12 to 20 sec must be right, in my Bun=
n 
Office drip pot...
Advance token to Sept/04. I must have Googled for green coffee, because her=
e 
was some guy with the same surname talking "grind finer, brew longer" and T=
= 
195-205 deg F, and he's a Nikon F nut, too!
Long story short- the Solis M(+) I bought was OK, not the best. 
From the full-gravel setting @ French Press, I only have ten more usable 
grinding steps until the burrs clash. 
"Not supposed to run it empty," says Josh @ Baratza.
"That's the Company Line," I thought to myself. Hmmm, I wonder- how much 
before the last of the 14g of beans for a double should I shut it off? BS-=
 
J. may be a couple of beans short of a blend
Still in the experimental stage with my IRoast and working
<Snip>
 
<Snip>
I did quit a bit of research and settled on it. I love it. Easy to clean,=
 
<Snip>
(more than adequate for espresso) 
<Snip>
and the chute has never clogged. One can remove the bin and grind direct to=
 
<Snip>
I think it is an excellent choice at the price.
<Snip>
-- 
"When the theme hits the bass, I dance the Jig!" - -Virgil Fox at the 
Wichita WurliTzer

11) From: Les
Welcome Stanley,
I had a Solis and it was awesome. I still think it is a great grinder for=
 
the price. I really maintained it! What did mine in was getting into 
espresso. I think if I had never moved the grind down that fine, it would=
 
have lasted 5-10 years. Instead 6 months into espresso 1 1/2 years owning=
 
it, it went bad. It stopped grinding and began pulverizing. As long as you=
 
don't do a lot of espresso it should be great. As Clint said, "You got to=
 
know your limitations."
 Les
 On 7/26/05, Stanley Erickson  wrote: 
<Snip>

12) From: Robert Avery
Les ... your point is well taken on Espresso Grind. I think where people get 
into trouble with this type of grinder is not working from the bottom up on 
the grind .... fine to course ! When I bought mine from Whole Latta Love at 
www.wholelattalove.com .... they are just up the road from me ... they where 
spicific on the fact it is real easy getting burrs to clash if you move down 
to the fine grind. You'll never know when they are rubbing when grinding. I 
found that the setting, about 2 grades up from the bottom worked just fine 
for Espresso and ground and ground and ground without changing settings. As 
we all have said though ... want better ... $$$$$$ is what will make the 
differents ... later, Bob
<Snip>

13) From: Stanley Erickson
Thanks RK.  Yea, I know I will want to upgrade as I move onward in this 
trek.  Have read to many emails to think differently (it is all about 
upgrading for better results).  Found another use for the SM+ - I ground 
some rice to clean up the burrs today.  My wife saw it and asked for the 
ground rice.  She boiled it and bingo - rice grits.  It was great with a 
little butter.  There was a little coffee grounds in it - sure had a 
blueberry taste.  Blueberry rice grits - yum.
Stan
R.N.Kyle wrote:
<Snip>

14) From: Alchemist John
I have someone asking me about this grinder.  I gave the standard 
line that it won't hold up under espresso.  Checking our host's site, 
it doesn't mention any caution about espresso and that it is stronger 
and more easily cleaned than the original.
How are they holding up?  Is it still an "acceptable for the price" 
item or simply acceptable?
I know the basic lines - I could use some actual data here.  Thanks folks.
At 22:10 7/26/2005, you wrote:
<Snip>
John Nanci
AlChemist at large
Zen Roasting , Blending & Espresso pulling by Gestalthttp://www.chocolatealchemy.com/

15) From: Alchemist John
I have someone asking me about this grinder.  I gave the standard 
line that it won't hold up under espresso.  Checking our host's site, 
it doesn't mention any caution about espresso and that it is stronger 
and more easily cleaned than the original.
How are they holding up?  Is it still an "acceptable for the price" 
item or simply acceptable?
I know the basic lines - I could use some actual data here.  Thanks folks.
At 22:10 7/26/2005, you wrote:
<Snip>
John Nanci
AlChemist at large
Zen Roasting , Blending & Espresso pulling by Gestalthttp://www.chocolatealchemy.com/

16) From: Jim Wheeler
Our Solis has been working fine for a couple of years.  It is used an
average of three time a day and seems to be easy to clean.  Not much
else to compare it with around here because no one else for at least
20 miles bothers to make "fancy" coffee.
Jim in Skull Valley
On 1/17/07, Alchemist John  wrote:
<Snip>

17) From: Jared Andersson
I don't use mine for espresso but have ground about a pound a week for two
years with no problems (Now that I have the new no break adjustment ring.)
and  ( I don't do espresso).  I love my grinder.  Now that both rings are
replaceable I think it is the best thing short of a rocky.  Jared
---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Alchemist John 
Date: Jan 17, 2007 8:40 PM
Subject: Re: +Solis Maestro Plus
To: homeroast
I have someone asking me about this grinder.  I gave the standard
line that it won't hold up under espresso.  Checking our host's site,
it doesn't mention any caution about espresso and that it is stronger
and more easily cleaned than the original.
How are they holding up?  Is it still an "acceptable for the price"
item or simply acceptable?
I know the basic lines - I could use some actual data here.  Thanks folks.

18) From: Paul Jolly
This may be of no help, but I used a plain Solis Maestro for about the past three years (ground who knows how many pounds, but lots for sure).  It's now moved to my workplace & been replaced at home with the Super Jolly.  I'd say that the Maestro is still 'acceptable for the price'...but getting a good grinder has made the biggest difference in my espresso since I upgraded from a Solis SL-70 to a Silvia.  In fact, the grinder may have even made a bigger diff. than the machines.
   
  I now know what users mean when they say that a good grinder is at least as important as a good machine (for espresso, that is).  I don't make FP coffee, so I can't comment about the SMP for that usage.  But yes, for the last three years the Maestro was 'acceptable' and probably ground around 50-70 pounds (a very rough ball park figure, that).
   
  Cheers,
  Paul
---------------------------------
Food fight? Enjoy some healthy debate
in the Yahoo! Answers Food & Drink Q&A.

19) From: Sandy Andina
--Apple-Mail-2--336497737
Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit
Content-Type: text/plain;
	charset-ASCII;
	delsp=yes;
	format=flowed
Well, I bought it after I got my Silvia, and for a month it was my  
main espresso grinder. I then got an irresistible deal on a gently  
used and lovingly maintained Rocky, and it was then relegated to drip/ 
press duty. It made pretty darned good espresso--not the equal of the  
Rocky or Mazzer, but very good nonetheless. Now, Ray's experience may  
have been different, and perhaps mine was atypical, but it held its  
own with Silvia.
On Jan 17, 2007, at 8:40 PM, Alchemist John wrote:
<Snip>
Sandy
www.sandyandina.com
www.sass-music.com
--Apple-Mail-2--336497737
Content-Transfer-Encoding: quoted-printable
Content-Type: text/html;
	charsetO-8859-1
Well, I bought it after I got my =
Silvia, and for a month it was my main espresso grinder. I then got an =
irresistible deal on a gently used and lovingly maintained Rocky, and it =
was then relegated to drip/press duty. It made pretty darned good =
espresso--not the equal of the Rocky or Mazzer, but very good =
nonetheless. Now, Ray's experience may have been different, and perhaps =
mine was atypical, but it held its own with Silvia.
On Jan =
17, 2007, at 8:40 PM, Alchemist John wrote:
I have someone asking me about this grinder.  I gave the standard line that = it won't hold up under espresso.  = Checking our host's site, it doesn't mention any caution about = espresso and that it is stronger and more easily cleaned than the = original. How are they holding up?  Is it still an "acceptable = for the price" item or simply acceptable? I know the = basic lines - I could use some actual data here.  Thanks folks. At 22:10 = 7/26/2005, you wrote: I have been in lurk mode for months, home roasting = about the same.  Time to = come out of the "mode closet" for a moment.  I read the list every night = with a fresh cup of home roasted brewed the the vac pot for Tom and = Maria's.  Still in the = experimental stage with my IRoast and working on a stash, again from Tom = and Maria's.  Just wanted = to put in my 2 cups worth regarding the Solis Maestro Plus.  I did quit a bit of research = and settled on it.  I = love it.  Easy to clean, = grinds just the way I want (more than adequate for espresso) and the = chute has never clogged.One can = remove the bin and grind direct to a portafilter or basket.  I think it is an excellent = choice at the price.Stanley (just beginning the = trek)homeroast mailing listhttp://li=sts.sweetmarias.com/mailman/listinfo/homeroastTo change your personal list settings (digest = options, vacations, unsvbscribes) go to http://=sweetmarias.com/maillistinfo.html#personalsettings John = NanciAlChemist at largeZen Roasting , Blending & Espresso pulling by = Gestalthttp://www.chocolatealchemy.com/homeroast mailing listhttp://li=sts.sweetmarias.com/mailman/listinfo/homeroastTo change your personal list settings (digest = options, vacations, unsvbscribes) go to http://=sweetmarias.com/maillistinfo.html#personalsettings = Sandywww.sass-music.com
= = --Apple-Mail-2--336497737--

20) From: raymanowen
I don't know what actual data would look like for a grinder. When you put
data into a grinder, the grinder becomes a shredder.
I have no long-term experience with the SMP.
The bottom line of my truncated experience is that Kyle Anderson, President
of Baratza, the importer, is one of the Princes with whom one could ever
hope to deal. He heard of my problems with catatonic customer service.
He understood my concerns over the quality of all the ring burrs I had ever
purchased over a period of months, two years ago. Kyle gave me a choice, an=
d
<Snip>
PROBLEM SOLVED! The man bent over backwards to solve my problem with the
grinder. My friend, Ray, doesn't do espresso- probably because he never
tried to. Both Ray and his wife noted the flavor boost with the new burrs.
However you brew coffee, there is always a better way. There's always a
bigger, uglier, better grinder. Found It! The beans don't know from Ugly.
Cuppers could never adopt any different way in their cupping, because it
would blow the testing standard. There is a definite delay between grinding
and brewing in cupping. This may cause some brows to get slapped, as in
'unmarked off [roasting] topic,' but it's a coffee opinion on a coffee list=
.
My only concern is to fine tune all of my coffee brewing techniques. One
technique I can control to minimize variations and improve flavor and aroma
for each individual origin is to grind directly into the brewer's filter
basket.
For an espresso shot, everything's pre heated. I grind, pack, tamp and lock
in the PF handle/ filter and hit GO! Since water boils at 202° F in this
Rocky Mountain feedlot miasma, that's the city limit. 203° = steam toy
unless I brew in a hyperbaric chamber. Not gonna do it. Wouldn't be prudent=
.
For press or drip brew, the grounds get soaked in the hot tub even faster.
The trouble is, thermodynamics causes a certain temperature loss over the
brewing time, even when I pre soak the brew basket or the press beaker in
<Snip>
Hmmm- I definitely think all of my roaster plans just took a different turn=
.
My 15 year-old water heater is now enjoying the cold and snow against the
fence out back. [It did a Nasty.] I'll just cut the thing down and play wit=
h
the gas orifice so I still get the 55,000 BTUH on propane. It will be prett=
y
close to the roasting muffle just getting to the serious stage after mock-u=
p
for my barbecue thingy.
This should work great, with space enough for the RK Drum within the cut
down tank, and the drive motor sitting on the outer housing shell. This is
all falling into place. The barbecue was a Kludge...
Cheers -RayO, aka Opa!
An A.O.Smith roaster- the RayO Roast- rescued from a Dud !

21) From: Ed Needham
I kept my water heater in my workshop for about a year with plans to tear it 
apart and use the tank for a drum.  It was electric, so there was no burner 
to salvage.
 I began one day to shred the outer layer off to get to the tank and man! 
they had that foam stuff filled in there so full there was little way of 
getting even the top off without the jaws of life.  I worked with it for 
over an hour with little success and it sat for a few more months.  Tried it 
again and gave up, sending it to the salvage yard.
I hope you have better luck.
*********************
Ed Needham®
"to absurdity and beyond!"http://www.homeroaster.com(include [FRIEND] in subject line to get through my SPAM filters)
*********************

22) From: hermit
I have the original Solis Maestro not the plus - also have a Rocky.  I
recently upgraded with new burrs for the Solis.  I have owned this
grinder for about 5 or 6 years, and I can find no fault with it.  Does
it do an espresso grind as good as the Rocky?  No it does not, but not
too bad a job.  The issue will come down to money - in my opinion you
get a lot for the $$.  If you're not in a hurry or don't mind spending
the extra money go Rocky or Mazzer, or whatever higher end grinder you
choose.  I do like the Solis - use it primarily for drip coffee, press
pot, and vac pot.
Regards,
Rich
<Snip>
folks.

23) From: James
As far as I am concerned, it simply has the best price/performance. At leas=
t that was my standard response until the price began to creep up. Problem =
is that anything comparable has also increased in price. For drip/FP I woul=
d not choose anything else. When I saw the pictures on SM, my first thought=
 was "my grounds are more even"!
  
For espresso it is a bit of a stret=
ch, but I use it for espresso in a standard low-end pump machine and it wor=
ks very well. After 8-9 months of daily use for espresso I have NEVER had a=
 bitter espresso although a few were lacking in intensity.
  
James in =
Southern CA.
----- Original Message ----
From: Alchemist John 
To: homeroast
Sent: Wednesd=
ay, January 17, 2007 6:40:47 PM
Subject: Re: +Solis Maestro Plus
I h=
ave someone asking me about this grinder.  I gave the standard 
line that=
 it won't hold up under espresso.  Checking our host's site, 
it doesn't =
mention any caution about espresso and that it is stronger 
and more easi=
ly cleaned than the original.
How are they holding up?  Is it still an=
 "acceptable for the price" 
item or simply acceptable?
I know the b=
asic lines - I could use some actual data here.  Thanks folks.
At 22:1=
0 7/26/2005, you wrote:
>I have been in lurk mode for months, home roasti=
ng about the 
>same.  Time to come out of the "mode closet" for a moment.=
  I read 
>the list every night with a fresh cup of home roasted brewed t=
he the 
>vac pot for Tom and Maria's.  Still in the experimental stage wi=
th 
>my IRoast and working on a stash, again from Tom and Maria's.  Just =
>wanted to put in my 2 cups worth regarding the Solis Maestro 
>Plus. =
 I did quit a bit of research and settled on it.  I love 
>it.  Easy to c=
lean, grinds just the way I want (more than adequate 
>for espresso) and =
the chute has never clogged.
>One can remove the bin and grind direct to =
a portafilter or 
>basket.  I think it is an excellent choice at the pric=
e.
>
>Stanley (just beginning the trek)
>=
>homeroast mailing list
>http://lists.sweetmarias.c=om/mailman/listinfo/homeroast
>To change your personal list settings (dig=
est options, vacations, 
>unsvbscribes) go tohttp://sweetmarias.com/mail=listinfo.html#personalsettings
>
John Nanci
AlChemist at large=
Zen Roasting , Blending & Espresso pulling by Gestalthttp://www.choco=latealchemy.com/
=


HomeRoast Digest