Are you looking for a solid manual coffee grinder? This may well be what you are looking for. Given the opportunity by a friend from Danes Specialty Coffee to try this grinder out, I glady put it through its paces.
This thing is solid. With a base made out of thick glass, and the grinder itself broken into a solid glass hopper and all metal drive train, not to mention the metal burs and steel rings for the grinder settings, this is not something that you want to drop or have thrown at you.
The positive side of this weight though is apparent when you start grinding however. Unlike other hand grinders that I have tried, this one doesn’t move around as much, and the “bean hopper” fits well in my hand as I grind. Event the solid handle seems to add to the ease of grinding, giving both good leverage and weight. While it comes with a “tip-resistant stand” I found that putting the grinder between my legs gave me the best results.
So how does it grind
In the images above, you can see that I tried this manual grinder with multiple settings, from everything from espresso to French press coarseness, it did a great job. Specifically the consistency in the grind was great. I was also impressed with the collection glass, as it made it quite easy to get the coffee where I needed it to be (in this case a v60 and an AeroPress).
So where is the “but”…??
Nothing is perfect, and while I loved the feel of this grinder, it had one flaw that made it a struggle to use well. The rings that you use on this grinder have a setting dial, and a lock ring. That in itself is not that bad, but trying to dial in the grind proved to be very difficult. without numbers on the dial, it is easy to quickly loose your place, and difficult to choose your favourite setting for any particular grind.
Once locked in, the only other problem is the possibility of knocking the lock ring, releasing the grinder from the spot that you worked so hard to find (which tends to happen when you remove the glass jar at the bottom.
Would you buy one?
This is a hard one to answer. On the Orphan Espresso page the Lido 2 is listed as $175 USD, which for a good grinder is not an excessive amount, but it is about 3x the cost of other decent manual grinders that are already on the market.
If it was just a little cheaper I would wholeheartedly recommend people at least try this grinder out, and to give it a couple of days (so that you can get used to the 2 ring system), but as it is, and with decent electric grinders not being that much more expensive, it comes down to personal choice. Too heavy to be seen as portable, this manual grinder would be a great present for your local coffee snob, but maybe a little expensive for the average user.