Crew Comparison: Baratza Forte AP vs Rocket Espresso Fausto

How Does It Compare?

The grind is one of the most important steps to making coffee you love at home. This week, we compared two magnificent, high-end grinders: the Rocket Espresso Macinatore Fausto and Baratza Forté AP. Both machines fall into the same price range but are equipped with radically different features. The Fausto’s burly burrs and infinite stepless grinder adjustments dose consistent grounds perfect for espresso—but the Fausto’s really just for espresso. Once you’ve homed in your ideal setting, you’ll only tweak it slightly or you risk losing your place.

Then we have Baratza’s only commercial-designed machine, the Forté AP. The Forté AP (All Purpose) fine-tuned and marked grinder settings make it effortless for baristas and home brewers alike to find their sweet spot. We should add that the Forté AP has a wicked quick motor that grinds beans in a matter of seconds! But don’t let stepped or stepless grinding dissuade you—we think both grinders would look good seated on your kitchen counter! Find out which grinder has the right features and style for you.

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

The Rocket Espresso Fausto  features stepless grinding to allow limitless adjustments. The Rocket Espresso Fausto features stepless grinding to allow limitless adjustments.

Grind

Sure, these high-end grinders are designed to be used in a commercial environment, but that doesn’t mean small offices or homes shouldn’t reap the benefits! The Rocket Espresso Fausto is a meaty machine topped with a 1.4-pound bean hopper to caffeinate a crowd. All those beans are no match for the 65mm flat steel burrs and a beefy motor that runs 1650 RPMs (rotations per minute). All that’s left is dialing in the Fausto. Some fear stepless grinders because of the limitless adjustments. While the dial turns easily, you should be aware that each turn makes a huge difference in the grind—you can be nearly there and then way out of the ballpark instantly!  Although, once you find the right spot, you won’t be adjusting the Fausto much.

The Fausto features two programmable time-based doses and a small digital display. The Fausto features two programmable time-based doses and a small digital display.

In comparison, the Baratza Forté AP adjust quickly and effortlessly thanks to 10 macro and 26 micro stepped settings—that’s 260 options! In a few clicks, it can grind from espresso to French press! With that in mind, the stepped adjustments are well-suited for the Forté AP—an abbreviation of all purpose. And it really is all-purpose! Even at the coarsest setting, the 54mm ceramic flat burrs efficiently grind consistent grounds. While it’s burrs are a bit smaller than the Fausto’s, the motor runs at steady 1950 RPMs—or an average of 3.5 to 3.7 grams per second for French press.

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.

Grade

The Rocket Espresso Fausto’s doserless chute and stainless steel portafilter holder are designed for espresso. The Fausto’s consistently fine grounds works with non-pressurized portafilters on a semi-automatic espresso machine. With limitless adjustments, we’d recommend pairing the Fausto with the Rocket Espresso R60V, which features pressure profiling. Together, these machines offer coffee connoisseurs countless opportunities to tweak their espresso. And with two programmable time-based buttons, you can save your ideal dosage for a single or double shot.

The Fausto is designed for espresso featuring a doserless chute and portafilter holder. The Fausto is designed for espresso featuring a doserless chute and portafilter holder.

The Baratza Forté AP’s has a trick up its sleeve. When you’re in a hurry, use one of your three programmable profiles and dose your grind with the touch of a button—oh yeah, did we mention it has a touchscreen display? The Forté AP doses grinds by weight, time or manually (perfect for topping off). Bonus: You can use the profiles to save both weight and time doses! However, weight-based dosage only works with the grounds bin—a great companion for a drip brewer. The Forté AP also comes with a portafilter holder, so you can grind directly for espresso!

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.

Glamour

The Baratza Forté AP’s modern style and user-friendly interface make it one of our favorite high-end grinders. The combination of the touchscreen and tactile grinder settings allow us to make quick adjustments that satisfy home brewers and baristas need. Baristas working the peak morning shift will rejoice with the programmable doses—and their customers will appreciate a quick cup! Coffee lovers who enjoy French press and espresso will find it a snap to brew both.

With a one-pound bean hopper on top, the Fausto has a large footprint. With a one-pound bean hopper on top, the Fausto has a large footprint.

While the Forté AP is built for commercial settings, it’s actually closer to the size of home machines. Now can you see this high-end grinder in your home? We can! On the other hand, the Rocket Espresso Fausto is considerably bigger—nearly three inches taller. It might not sound like much, but the Fausto is nearly 18 inches tall and 11 inches deep. However, most of the Fausto’s height is from the one-pound bean hopper. In comparison, the Forté AP has 10-ounces hopper, so you’ll have to decide what features is important for you. The Forté AP’s small footprint would fit perfectly in a coffee cart or studio office while the Fausto would support a local café.

Conclusion

While both grinders fall in the same price point and are marked for commercial use, the Rocket Espresso Fausto and Baratza Forté AP are completely different machines. The Forté AP features an intuitive touchscreen that saves your three favorite settings—perfect for cafés or home brewers—and 260 grinder adjustments. The Rocket Espresso Fausto is designed for espresso and showcases its capable 65mm burrs with its stepless adjustments.

Thanks for checking out this week’s Crew Comparison. If you’re looking for a high-end grinder, naturally you’ll want a high-end espresso machine to complement it! Check out Gear Guide: Top Three High-End Espresso Machines.

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