Crew Review: Baratza Forté AP Grinder

 

How Does It Compare?

Whether you’re in the mood for French press or espresso, there’s one's grinder that can handle it all: the Baratza Forté AP. With time, weight and manual grinding accessible on the touch-activated digital display, the Forté AP (All Purpose) is the perfect companion for small cafés, offices or even coffee aficionados! Even though it’s in Baratza’s commercial lineup, it has none of the bulk at just over 14-inches tall—almost the same height as the Baratza Vario-W! Baratza designed the Vario-W for the home brewer with 230 grinder adjustments and weight-based grinding—which you shouldn’t dismiss at all! However, the Forté AP has feature and functionality upgrades that support the high demand in a commercial setting. If you plan on using your grinder continuously throughout the day, we’d recommend checking out the Forté AP.

The Baratza Forté AP features an intuitive digital display and 260 stepped grinder settings.

Grind

The Baratza Forté AP is equipped with all the right features and equipment to support a bustling café. The programmable and user-friendly digital display makes sure baristas can quickly grind the right dosage and spend less time dialing in the beans—that’s essential when you’re in a rush! Save up to three favorite settings under both time and weight-based grinding for anything from espresso to French press. To grind using the weight button, use the grounds container to balance on the scale located at the bottom. We recommend using the weight-based setting for pour over or drip brewing. Then use the portafilter holder and time-based grinding for espresso.

The Forté AP features time, weight and manual grinding controlled by the digital display. The Forté AP features time, weight and manual grinding controlled by the digital display.

While we’re praising the Forté AP as Baratza’s commercial grinder, it's packed with features we think home baristas would love! With 10 macro and 26 micro stepped adjustments (all marked for your convenience), home baristas will have no problem finding the sweet spot for new brews! And the Forté AP quickly grinds through beans thanks to the 54mm ceramic flat burrs—we know, those are some big burrs. That said, those larger burrs produce an average of 2-grams per second for espresso—a feature home and café baristas will love!

Grade

Thanks to the 260 grinder settings, the Baratza Forté AP can easily grind from French press to espresso. In addition, it a removable portafilter holder and grounds bin, which we love to see on a grinder at this caliber! It’s one feat for a grinder to be able to grind for espresso and French press and even better to provide the accessories to make it effortless. The portafilter holder snaps into the front of the grinder, but unfortunately, doesn’t interact with the scale, so we can’t use weight-based grinding with espresso. That said, it’s easily overlooked since the Forté AP also has time-based or manual grinding as options for different brew methods.

The Forté AP features large 54mm ceramic flat burrs that easily grind through beans.

Glamour

The Baratza Forté AP’s intuitive display makes grinding smooth sailing from the moment you take it out of the box. The touchscreen actives at the touch of a finger with all the functionalities out in the open—nothing hidden here! And it’s easy to save your favorite settings; simply select the method, number and make the adjustments, then press and hold to save—just know it won’t save the macro or micro adjustments. Luckily, Baratza has each stepped marked from one to 10 and A to Z to make finding your grind setting a breeze each time!

The Forté AP comes with a removable portafilter holder and a grounds container. The Forté AP comes with a removable portafilter holder and a grounds container.

All these bells and whistles of the Forté AP are packed away into an attractive, sleek stainless steel case—even the portafilter holder is thick and sturdy metal! The metal casing also serves reduces noise, which is a welcomed feature since the motor has 70% more power than the Vario-W. We also mentioned earlier that even though the Forté AP is a commercial grinder, it’s only 14.2-inches tall! We expect it will clear kitchen cabinets and with its slim profile, it will slip onto the smallest café or home counter.

Conclusion

Whether you’re a small café, office or home barista, the Baratza Forté AP has something for everyone! Featuring 260 stepped settings and an intuitive display, it’s easy to dial in this grinder to make a cup of coffee you love. Tell us what you think of the Baratza Forté AP in the comments below.

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