Cart items: 0  Total: $0.00 CDN
View Shopping Cart

free shipping on orders over $100

Nuova Simonelli Mythos - Turning a bad grinder great

by Wes Farnell
© 2013 Eight Ounce Coffee
Posted: 07/02/13

In terms of development, one of the most neglected areas of coffee is the coffee grinder. There are currently a couple of companies that are conducting R&D into ground-breaking, innovative design - but the outputs are some time away.

In the meantime, the market leaders have been Mazzer and Anfim, for specialty cafes: neither are perfect but they do a better job than the rest. However, there is a lesser-seen, newer option on the market that has the potential to be great: the Nuova Simonelli Mythos.

I have been a fan of Nuova Simonelli's Aurelia series of espresso machines for some time (their quality and consistency, not their design!) and the Mythos looked to make me feel the same way about their grinder - except I like the aesthetic!

The first time I came across the Mythos was in Prufrock, London, a couple of years ago. It was an early prototype version that they had to test and give feedback on. There were plenty of things that they liked about the grinder: 45 degree mounted burr set, heated burr... but the dosing was inconsistent, the clump breaker was flimsy and didn't work, and the angle of the hopper meant that beans didn't always make it down to the burr. However, this was a prototype and the feedback was given.

Fast forward 18 months and I was now in Calgary finding myself at Phil & Sebastian's - and a Mythos was sitting on the counter. I was intrigued to find out whether the issues had been resolved.

After talking to Sebastian, along with a few of the baristas, I was told how amazing they thought it was - no wastage, no clumping, very little coffee retained in the chute, and accurate dosing every time. As well as the angle of the hopper being slightly adjusted. This was great news, as I'm always looking for the best products to recommend when consulting for cafes

Excited with this new information, I spared no time in getting one on order for a cafe I was working with (Postino, Calgary) and raved about this new grinder to the GM and owners. I went away for a couple of weeks, the grinder arrives and, on my return, I was shocked to hear that the grinder was 'crap' from the GM. (She's a direct person).

I quickly went over to the cafe and used the grinder for a while to find that her description was pretty much on the money.

The dose was massively variant (+/- 1.5g), the coffee was dosed in chunks and the chute retained a lot of coffee. On closer inspection I noticed that the original clump breaker was fitted to the brand new Mythos: the one I initially saw on the prototype 2 years earlier.

We ordered a couple of new clump breakers from Nuova Simonelli USA in the hope that this would solve our problems, and they arrived a few days ago. I was confident that this would solve the problem but when it arrived, there was one more thing that had to be done - it needed to be fitted.

This proved a little more taxing than expected, as it's very different to the original part. So, for your benefit, here is the process to update the Mythos clump breaker - photos courtesy of the excellent Mr Ben Put of P&S

  • Remove the original clump breaker by removing the two screws holding the metal strip, that in turn holds the plastic clump breaker in place
  • Clean the chute out fully
  • The new clump breaker assembly consists of a cube-like plastic breaker, two screws, and a longer metal shield to control flow of grounds
  • The metal dosing chute on the grinder has a screw holding it in place: remove the screw and pull the chute down.
  • Once removed, give everything a clean again to make sure the chute and the grinder are both clean and free of grounds
  • The new clump breaker caps the top of the metal chute that you have removed: the plastic sides go around the outside of the top of the chute and the side with teeth caps the top.
  • You will know you have it in the correct position as the hole in the clump breaker will line up with the screw hole in the chute
  • You now need to slide the chute back in to the grinder. This can be a little tight and you need to be persistent, as the chute wasn't designed to have this extra layer of plastic in between itself and the grinder
  • Once in, secure the chute and clump breaker to the ginder with the original screw
  • Finally, attach the longer metal shield to the front of the chute with the two supplied screws

And you're done! But was it all worthwhile? Absolutely!

Due to the position of the breaker at the top of the chute, directly under the burr, minimal coffee is retained, giving a much more consistent dose*. The design of the teeth breaks up the grinds very well, leaving minimal, or no clumping. And finally, the longer metal shield directs coffee directly and accurately in to the portafilter leaving little or no wastage.

What does all this tell us, apart from the fact that Simonelli should be supplying this mod as standard with all of its grinders direct from the factory? That the tiniest, cheapest part can make a massive difference. In the case of the Mythos, it changed it from a bloody expensive waste of money, to one of the best grinders I've come across.

*As this is a recent modification, I am currently tracking accuracy and will update this post with the detail when completed.

Add Your Opinion - Post Your Comment Here

Be the First to Comment

No related posts at this time.
Copyright © 2018 8-oz Coffee Ltd. operating as Eight Ounce Coffee   
Website designed and developed by Eight Ounce Coffee - because we were web nerds before we were coffee nerds.