Breville BCG820BSSXL Smart Grinder Pro Review
The Breville BCG820BSSXL Smart Grinder Pro is one of the many electric burr grinders that retail in the $200 range.
Choosing between the many models at this popular price point can be a frustrating experience; especially since it seems like a new one is introduced to the market every other day.
This Breville Smart Coffee Grinder Pro Review will go over some of the key features of this grinder and help you find out if this is the right grinder for you.
what you should know about breville
Breville has come a long way in recent years, and it is one of the first brands that come to mind when it comes to coffee grinders, and for good reason.
It is one of the largest and most popular manufacturers of coffee grinders. This can be good and bad. The scope of the company, coupled with its longevity, means that they are not going anywhere.
Regardless of whether you will need replacement parts next year or ten years in the future, Breville will most likely still be around to fulfill your customer service needs.
It does, however, have a reputation for mass production, which can lead to occasionally malfunctioning products or parts that need to be replaced. Breville is also known for selling these products refurbished at a steep discount, which may be a good option for the budget-minded shopper.
set your expectations
As a slightly above entry-level electric burr grinder, you can expect a nice and consistent grind with this Breville coffee grinder. This model is aimed at the many espresso aficionados, who might not be able to afford one of the pricy semi-professional grinders. As such it fills a big gap in the market.
Anything that requires a medium to fine grind would work well with this grinder, and it grinds with a consistency commensurate with other grinders at this price point.
At a really coarse level, the grinds can lack consistency, which is to be expected with most burr grinders in this price range. For some, this can be an issue if they brew a lot of French press. For me, however, I think that immersion brewing methods, such as the French press benefit from not using too coarse a ground, so it’s a bit of pseudo-problem, to be honest.
a few things we like
Breville smart grinder pro review
The Breville coffee grinder has 40mm stainless steel conical burrs that offer good grind consistency that goes fine enough for espresso. These are high quality and built to last as stainless steel burrs tend to be quite a bit more durable than their ceramic counterparts.Much of the grinder is made of plastic, which can feel light or less durable than stainless steel, but the main body is stainless steel. This gives the overall grinder some heft and keeps it stable while it is doing its thing.The large size of the coffee hopper allows for you to grind up to an entire pound of beans at once, which is great when you are entertaining.
ease of use
This Breville coffee grinder has a digital interface, which may be more comfortable for some users. Every setting is distinct and quantized instead of being on a continuum, which makes for meticulous recording of data easy.However, the settings are arbitrarily assigned numbers for you to figure out rather than giving you labeled coarsenesses. This is standard for many grinders electric or manual and will take some time to adjust to.The grinder has a magnetic grounds tray, which makes cleaning it a breeze. This makes brushing into the nooks and crannies of your grinder a thing of the past.
This grinder offers 60 settings of coarseness, which is perfect when you need to dial in your espresso.The consistency of the grind, as with any other grinder, decreases with the coarseness of the grind. This grinder struggles to provide a consistent coarse grind, but does well with medium to fine grounds. The limit of how fine this grinder can get seems to be at the espresso level.
Things to be aware of?
The grinder’s main downside is how common defects or abnormalities are in the manufacturing. This is corroborated by the number of refurbished grinders Breville sells.
It does seem like customer service is responsive and willing to provide support and replacement parts when needed. The company is large enough and expansive enough to even replace an entire grinder when necessary. The grinder also sometimes locks up and stops grinding when the setting is too coarse.
Are there any alternatives?
The Baratza Encore
In terms of getting the job done, the Baratza Encore is a beast. It’s a use it everyday, no fuss, kinda grinder that most home users are very happy with.
Baratza is also famous for their line of grinders, which is more in favor with the true professionals compared to Breville.
That being said, the Breville Smart Grinder Pro does have an ace up its sleeve: It really performs better when grinding for espresso, so that should be a factor to consider.
If you are just looking for a grinder for filter brew, I would prefer the no-frills approach of the Encore.
Are you looking for something more all-round? Then this model is definitely worth looking into.
Breville Dose Control
Even though it’s basic, it’s still a nice little entry-level espresso grinder.
The final verdict
This coffee grinder is one of many options at the slightly-above entry-level range. Compared to its many competitors, Breville is one of the more trusted and long-lived brands and manufacturers of coffee grinders, and this grinder proves why.
If you are looking for a rather cheap espresso grinder, this one will do just fine. It will most likely not impress advanced coffee snobs, but for somebody who is looking for something that will work quickly and efficiently while looking good on a kitchen counter, this grinder will do just fine.