German company Mahlkonig has been dominant in the coffee shop space for several years with their hugely successful range of shop grinders. I had always wondered why they had ignored the home market, and so perhaps it was inevitable, especially with the rise of the home barista, that they would launch a product aimed at the home market.

The company is pricing it at a very reasonable €499 if you’re in Germany. This sounds pretty reasonable to me if it delivers the quality that I would expect from the company.

The highlights of the machine are:

  • 54mm ‘special’? steel burrs
  • Stepless grind, but with 35 indicators covering the full range of coffee types
  • quick-release removable portafilter support and separate dosing cup
  • Strong and durable motor grinds at 1-2.8 g/s
  • Dimensions (cm) 19w x 52.5h x 28d
  • Digital front panel
  • Weighs 5.1kg
One grinder to make them all?

The X54 can grind as fine as 200 µm for espresso’s all the way to 1,000 µm for your cowboy coffee. What is not yet known is the quality of those grinds, but knowing Mahlkonig, they will have focused on producing fluffy clump-free coffee grind.

The base is made of aluminium, which helps keep the weight down to just a smidge over 5kg – lighter than my Zenith E which I use at home. As a material, aluminium is not a great sustainable resource, but if it’s built to last many years, many of those negatives are offset.

The changeable front panel, which allows placement or removal of a portafilter is nice, but I guess this design is to give choice, not necessarily to flip between options regularly. I just use a dosing cup for everything which saves fiddling. The only time I can’t use a dosing cup is if I’m testing an espresso machine with a sub-58mm portafilter.

Switch between forks to hold the portafilter, or using a dosing cup

I couldn’t find information about cleaning the machine, but it seems like they have thought a lot about making the design user friendly, so I’m expecting it to be straightforward.

I have to say, I like the design. I haven’t been a fan of the fancy rainbow colours and light shows on some of their other models, which look gimmicky to me, but this model looks functionally elegant and well built. I can’t wait to get my hands on one to see how it feels to use, and the quality of the coffee it produces.

If you’re in Germany, the good news is that you’ll be able to pick one up this month, but the rest of the world has to wait to get a turn. The UK is getting orders in July! But

May 2021
June 2021
July 2021
Switzerland, UK, Netherlands, Italy, Spain, China
August 2021
Australia, Korea, Japan, Russia, Indonesia and remaining EU countries2022

The company says that other regions will be announced in due course.

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