The New Classic: Baratza Virtuoso Plus Review 2021

A good bean grinder is crucial for a properly brewed cup of Joe. That’s why baristas all around the world have an affinity for the Baratza Virtuoso coffee grinder. Hence, we are too obliged to bring you the Baratza Virtuoso+ review.

The Virtuoso+ offers the same stellar coffee grinding consistency with some new sets of attractive new features. So now you can channel your inner barista at your own home comfort. The Baratza Virtuoso was undoubtedly a crowd favorite before 2019; that’s when the Virtuoso+ came along. So let’s dive in to find what makes the ‘plus’ or upgraded version so special.

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Baratza Virtuoso Plus Review: Key Features

Baratza Virtuoso+ Conical Burr Coffee Grinder with Digital Timer Display
  • SPECIALTY COFFEE ASSOCIATION AWARD WINNING GRINDERS - Baratza grinders are preferred by coffee professionals and backed by Baratza’s world class support.
  • DIGITAL TIMER and BACKLIT GROUNDS BIN - a 40-second digital timer, adjustable to a tenth of a second, and an LED backlit grounds bin to dose ground coffee accurately and consistently.
  • 40 GRIND SETTINGS - With enhanced commercial-grade conical burrs to help you explore an extensive range of brew methods (espresso, Aeropress, Hario V60, Chemex, French Press, and automatic brewers).
  • STYLISH - A sculptured metal top and base give the Virtuoso+ a modern image that highlights your coffee corner.
  • WARRANTY/QUALITY PARTS - Engineered with 40mm hardened alloy steel burrs manufactured in Liechtenstein, Europe, plus a powerful DC motor. This combination creates a consistent grind and durability ensuring the longevity users have come to expect from the Baratza brand. The Virtuoso+ is backed by Baratza’s world class support and a 1 year warranty.

Don’t Dump It, Fix It! – Policy

Most small-scale, consumer appliances are built to wear out or cease being useful in a short time. This kitchenware is expensive and difficult to repair. So consumers are expected to dump and replace which do have big environmental ramifications.

In contrast, Baratza has purposefully designed the Baratza coffee grinders (including Virtuoso+) to be maintained like a commercial-grade grinder as well as maximize their value. So, we’ve felt that our Baratza Virtuoso+ review this honesty and commitment is a key feature here. With daily cleaning, repair, maintenance, and even rebuilds their grinders can give an accurate, excellent grind for many years.

Grind Settings And Coarse Consistency

This grinder has an impressive 40 grind settings. But what matters more is how good those options actually are rather than the number of all of these options. So let’s talk about the grind consistency. At the coarsest setting of 40, which is the highest end of the grind scale, you are going to experience a bit of inconsistency in the grind. That is kind of usual across the board. Because coarser level grinds need bigger gaps in the grind burrs. So more coffee bean chunks fall through the cracks.

French Press And Cold Brewing

However, the aforementioned coarse grind result isn’t going to mar your Cold Brew or French press dreams. You can yet get a coarse enough grind at a slightly lower-level setting that is sufficiently consistent.

Grind Range

Near the middle of the 40 grind range, around the grind size, you should ply for drip methods. It is where this machine performs with the most consistency. Around 20 to 30–no complaints there from us! At the lower, the finest end, the bean grind remains consistent also.

However, in our opinion, it is not found fine enough for a non-pressurized portafilter. So if you own a fancy semi-automatic coffee machine, search for something with an even wider grind range or specifically designed for brewing espresso.

Ease Of Use

The great thing about the Baratza Virtuoso+ Conical Burr Coffee Grinder is that it will be as simple or as sophisticated as you want to make it. If you don’t want to tinker much with this machine, you can use it on its 40 grind settings with the base 450 rpm speed. It’ll perform just fine.

Customizable Burr Rotation

On the other hand, if you desire to amp up rotation speed or bring down the grind time, you can just open the gearbox and do that. Instead of going for the standard 450 rpm, you can change from the 405 to 495 range. Also, you can alter the grind speed from 1.5 to 2.4 g/sec. Now that’s what we call pretty impressive.

Nevertheless, this is an absolutely easy-to-use grinder without all of that tinkering. You can even (for grinding directly) into a pressurized portafilter utilize the handy pulse grinder.

External Build Quality

There really is not anything significantly negative to state here. On a surface level observation, the Virtuoso+ gives you the stylish, sleek look that you can expect at their price point. The metal base and top give it the feel of a prime high-quality machine.

Burr and Internal Components Quality

This machine comes with 40mm steel burrs manufactured in European-standard with a DC motor. That means you can simply rely on this machine for years of consistency as well as durability before even thinking about going at any replacement parts. Even then you won’t have to substitute the whole machine itself.

Baratza Customer Service

In addition to their robust build quality, all of the Baratza products are backed by some incredible customer service and comes with a 1 year of warranty.


How To Use Baratza Virtuoso+ Conical Burr Coffee Grinder

Before Using Your Grinder

  1. Prior to using a Virtuoso+ grinder for the 1st time one should clean the bean hopper and the ground coffee bin in soapy warm water.
  2. See our section CLEANING AND MAINTENANCE for the instructions on how to remove and reinstall the bean hopper.
  3. There may be some rust on the grind burrs when you get your grinder. This is normal and will go away after you grind a small amount of coffee.
  4. To discard the rust and season the grind burrs, grind 1/4 pound of coffee beans and then discard.

Initial Operation

  1. Place the Virtuoso coffee grinder on a level surface and then plug it only into a correct voltage, AC outlet.
  2. Now, remove the hopper lid from the hopper by lifting it off.
  3. Pour in the desired amount of roasted whole coffee beans into the hopper.
  4. You can pour up to a maximum of 8 oz.
  5. Replace the hopper lid back. Check and make sure the ground coffee bin is correctly and fully inserted.

Setting Up The Grind Control

  1. Slowly clockwise or counterclockwise rotate the bean hopper. So that you can align the indicator on the bean hopper with the number setting on the grind scale you desired.
  2. Please Note, Lower number = smaller particle size. Select the correct grind settings for the brewing process you are going for.
  3. Turning the hopper to your right-hand side or counter-clockwise produces a bigger bean particle size. And left-hand side or clockwise numbers give a smaller particle size.
  4. Below the grind settings shown in the table can be used as a standard guideline.
EspressoDrip and PouroverFull Immersion
2-6Brewer 13-14AeroPress 8-11
 V60 13-14Siphon 14
 Chemex 20-21French Press 30-32
  • The actual grind size for a specific setting will differ depending on many factors. Factors including the degree of roast or light vs. dark level of roasting, humidity, type of bean, freshness, oil content, etc. With more usage, you will determine the grind settings that suit your taste bud, brewing practice, and your favorite coffee beans.

Safety And Cautions

  1. Use only with the AC current connection and with the correct voltage. See the label on the grinder’s base to determine the accurate voltage. See our PRODUCT SPECIFICATIONS for power and voltage.
  2. Only clean the machine’s housing with a slightly damp or dry cloth.
  3. Do not utilize this machine for anything other than its intended purpose (i.e. grinding whole roasted beans).
  4. If your Virtuoso coffee grinder is used other than for its intended usage, Baratza will not accept any blame for damaging or injuring it. The same is applicable for improper operation or repair works. All warranty claims will be void for such causes.
  5. Disassemble grinder parts only as instructed in the Care and Cleaning section of the official manual.
  6. Do not operate the machine with a damaged plug or cord, or if your machine malfunctions.
  7. Do not leave the machine unattended while switched ON.
  8. Power off and unplug the grinder when not in use from the electrical outlet. The same goes before the cleaning too.
  9. To unplug, grasp the plug then remove it from the outlet. Never jerk the cord.
  10. Keep your Virtuoso+ out of the reach of any children.
  11. Do not soak the grinder, the cord, or the plug into water or any other liquid.


Cleaning And Maintenance

Baratza Virtuoso Grinder Deep Cleaning

A full, fast, and easy cleaning can be achieved using  Full CircleTM biodegradable cleaning tablets. Full Circle tablets are built to remove coffee particles and suck up and discard coffee oil residue and odors.

  1. Remove all coffee beans from the bean hopper. Run the grinder to withdraw any beans inside.
  2. Place the recommended quantity of coffee grind into the vacant grinder hopper.
  3. Adjust the grind setting to 30 now. Place insert the grounds bin. Apply the pulse button to run the grinder.
  4. Grind all of the cleaning tablets into the bin.
  5. Once done, we advise grinding about 30g of coffee to wash away any tablet residue.
  6. Discard the ground coffee/tablets.

Removing The Bean Hopper

  1. Remove all coffee beans from the hopper.
  2. Then press the pulse button to run any remaining coffee beans through your Virtuoso+ grinder.
  3. Unplug it from the power outlet.
  4. By rotating it counterclockwise until it stops remove the bean hopper.
  5. Then lift the bean hopper off of your grinder’s housing.

Removing The Ring Burr

  1. Pull up the silicone seal off the top of the Ring Burr.
  2. By lifting it straight upwards detach the ring burr by the lifting tabs out of your grinder.
  3. If the burr does not lift out this way, check and ensure that the grind adjustment ring is turned completely counterclockwise.

Cleaning The Grounds Bin, Hopper, And Burrs

  1. Wash the grounds hopper, bin, and the hopper’s lid in soapy warm water.
  2. Then rinse and dry it completely.
  3. If the grinder is used regularly, the burrs should be washed at least every few months.
  4. Using cleaning tablets (see our Deep Cleaning section above) or with a stiff whisk.
  5. Proper cleaning unlocks the burrs to perform the most harmonious grind possible.
  6. Cleaning also discards some of the coffee oils, which will degrade and stale the flavor of your ground coffee.

Replacing The Bean Hopper

To replace the Baratza Virtuoso grinder’s bean hopper, line up the two small tabs on the foot of the hopper with their respective notches on top of your grinder housing. Then insert the bean hopper into the grinder. Rotate it clockwise once the bean hopper is in place.

Clearing A Clogged Grinder

If your bean grinder is not omitting coffee normally, it could the clogging of the coffee powder. This can only occur if the portafilter or bean grounds bin gets overfilled. Or grounded coffee gets backed up into the chute of the grounds and in the grinding chamber. It can also happen over time as the coffee powder gets built up. Visit the Troubleshooting part on Baratza.com for detailed help for unclogging the grinder.


About Baratza

Baratza is a company based in the United States. They were established in 1999. Kyra Kennedy and Kyle Anderson have been devoted to manufacturing accessible coffee grinders for home brewing coffee lovers. Breville acquired it in 2020.

Because Baratza is exclusively focused on consumer-level, top-notch grinders you know that you’re getting only quality machines.

The Virtuoso was an excellent bean grinder. And for that purpose, it remained unaltered since its first release in 2005. With the new model, the Virtuoso +, Baratza has upgraded its admired grinder by adding neat designing touches and much-demanded-for traits. And yes, it has more than just a few extra new grind settings on this Virtuoso+.


Who Is It For

The Virtuoso+ is a superb mid-level grinder. Great for semi-experienced baristas who require the grind consistency and range but can’t invest in a $1000+ grinder with 100s of grind settings. The 40 settings should be enough to get you from a French press to a near-espresso level with a sufficient gap for experimentation in between. So if you’re someone who has many different brew tools that you wish to trade out, the Virtuoso+ is a great choice.

The 40 grind settings are an absolute respectable grind spectrum. Especially if you are primarily concerned with drip and manual brewing. The Virtuoso+ has a professional-grade feeling to it even if it’s being a mid-level grinder thanks to its metal parts and weight.

As always, we are big suckers for grind consistency. The Baratza Virtuoso grinder delivers on that factor too! With only some negligible issues at the most extreme ends of its grind range. Needless to say Virtuoso+ blows away a lot of the competition with ease. If you want a brand that provides no-nonsense customer service then Baratza is an outstanding option for you.

Who Is It Not For

If you crank this grinder up to the highest RPM with a super prolonged grind time, you run the danger of damaging the coffee beans with heat transfer.

Like many other electric bean grinders, the Virtuoso+ is still a bit noisy device. Especially if you don’t remember to put on the hopper lid.

There is a disparity between the 5.1oz grounds bin and the 8oz bean hopper capacity. It could be irksome to you. This is also problematic as it has an opaque grounds bin. Also, Baratza Virtuoso grinder’s value is kind of steep for what you get. You can find expert-level grinders with 60+ grind options for less money than the Virtuoso+.


The Verdict

The Virtuoso+ Burr Grinder is a perfect device for the homebrewing aficionados who prize an extremely consistent grind. Its excellent exquisite design, grinding capability, and handy traits make it a winner.

If you are biased to French Press and Pour-over brewing and want accurate control over your grind so you can extract a smooth, clean cup of coffee, then the Virtuoso+ is exactly meant for you.

If you occasionally play with espresso, the Virtuoso+ will meet your needs. However, if you are obsessed with fine-tuned espresso grind and pulling a perfect shot with your espresso machine, then do not purchase it. We can concretely say that, we’re publishing the Baratza Virtuoso review as our favorite pick amongst the grinders of same price point.


FAQ

Is Baratza Virtuoso Good For Espresso?

The Virtuoso can grind fine enough for espresso. But it can’t make small adjustments need for a proper espresso shot.

Where Are Baratza Coffee Grinders Made?

Grinders are designed in Seattle, USA. Built-in Taiwan.

Is Breville Smart Grinder Pro Good For Espresso?

Breville Grinder Pro grinds beans for many drink styles. Including French press, drip, espresso, and cold brew.


Conclusion

We conclude the Baratza Virtuoso Plus review with the claim that, its grind consistency alone, the Baratza Virtuoso+ is still among the superstars. It remains one of the better selections for its class, builds, and engineering. Build at a small, Washington-based company that cuts no corners for its products.

This single-minded pursuit of quality, dedication for the product, and respectable grind consistency with other thoughtful traits making it an easy coffee grinder to recommend without any hesitation.

Happy Brewing!

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