Whether it’s a neighborhood café trying to scrape together the capital for a roaster or an aspiring inventor looking to fund the first round of production, coffee projects are no stranger to Kickstarter. But only the more ambitious set their make-or-break goal at a cool 100 grand. But then again, the Voltaire Smart Grinder is not your typical coffee Kickstarter project.
The Voltaire Smart Grinder is the brain child of Get It Right (GIR), a New York-based design firm with three successful campaigns in the bag. Admittedly, those campaigns centered around making better kitchen utensils out of silicon, but it’s clear this is not their first rodeo. Normally we maintain a healthy skepticism concerning any device that promises to revolutionize coffee brewing, but we’re reminded that the Acaia Coffee Scale, went from an unlikely Kickstarter success story to a barista staple found in the best espresso bars around the world.
Beyond a well composed Kickstarter campaign, the Voltaire Smart Grinder boasts several features rarely found on a consumer machine. Stepless adjustment promises a precise level of adjustment, and a direct path from the burr to the receptacle minimizes waste (similar to Baratza’s forthcoming grinder, the Sette). Perhaps more interesting for tech-savvy home brewers is the ability to store grind settings, order coffee automatically, all while being powered by a battery that can hold its charge for up to three weeks.
We’ve long felt that consumers have few good options when it comes to coffee grinders. Beyond the excellent burr grinders made by Baratza and our sponsors at KitchenAid, we hesitate to recommend the majority of entry level grinders. If GIR’s latest product delivers everything it promises, we might have a new favorite home grinder on our hands. At the time of writing, almost a thousand people were willing to take that chance.