I’ve had my Baratza Vario-W for almost a month now, and have used it in multiple situations, from my Coffee Ambushes to Whole Foods demos, using it in a coffee shop, to using it in the Batdorf Brewing Lab. I’ve put it through it’s paces, and I can tell you it really is a revolutionary product, and I have to say it’s become a vital part of my manual brewing set-up. So, let’s take a look at it.
If you’re not familiar with it, the Baratza Vario-W, previously named the Vario-E, is a Vario grinder with a built-in scale, so it grinds a specific weight each time. You can program it for whatever weight you’re looking for, hit the Start/Stop button, and it gives you that specific weight every time. It’s that simple, but the first grinder on the market to incorporate a built-in scale. It seems like just yesterday I was happily using my Vario, but having to measure out my doses on a scale into metal cups before using. Using the Vario at some of these events I’ve been hosting at our Roastery, we’ve been having upwards of 100 people or more, and I’ve been measuring out pre-weighed doses in advance of 30 or more.
But with the Vario-W, that step is completely eliminated. And it seems pretty accurate each time in terms of weight. Load the hopper in the bottom, make sure it’s tared out, hit the button you’ve programmed with the weight you’re looking for, hit Start/Stop, and you’re done. It really is that easy. This saves me time, and is again, perfectly consistent over and over. I’ve watched the scale amount each time, and it seems to be spot on every time. The scale is built into the bottom of the grinder, the hopper sits just on top of it, it doesn’t have any other parts different than the regular Vario. It still has the amazing macro and micro adjustments I’ve come to love from the Vario. My time is 5 seconds faster than I’m looking for? No problem, one quick adjustment to the micro side on the left, and I dial it in with ease. The adjustment system on the Vario is very easy, and very accurate.
I’ve said it before, the Baratza Vario is the best “Pro-sumer” grinder on the market, and the Vario-W has easily taken it’s place, taking advantage of the best pluses of the Vario, (the amazing adjustment system, the Mahlkonig ceramic burrs, the ease of programming), and adding the convenience of a built-in scale for dosing. It’s easy to use, consistent, and Baratza’s service is second to none. I will again, be using the Vario for my Brewers Cup competition prep and during competition, and proudly. The Baratza Vario-W is available now, and I highly recommend this grinder for all baristas and smaller shops doing manual brewing programs.