All too often, so-called "revolutionary" new coffee makers just feel like manufacturers are trying to reinvent the wheel. However, once in a while something truly interesting comes along, which is why I'm embarking on this Spinn Coffee Maker review.
All too often, so-called “revolutionary” new coffee makers just feel like manufacturers are trying to reinvent the wheel. However, once in a while something truly interesting comes along, which is why I’m embarking on this Spinn Coffee Maker review.
To be honest, I hadn’t paid the Spinn Coffee Maker much mind until recently. However, the excited noise people are making has become so deafening that I just had to take a closer look.
With that in mind, I ordered the Spinn Pro from Amazon and spent a couple of days putting it through its paces.
So, does this coffee machine live up to the hype? After shelling out $N/A for mine, I really hoped so!
Spinn Coffee Maker Review Overview
To say the Spinn Coffee Maker was eagerly anticipated is the understatement of the century. The thing started out as a Kickstarter campaign around five years ago but didn’t actually see the light of day until recently. In fact, quite a few of the initial investors had kind of given up hope.
So, now that it’s here, what’s all the fuss about? Well, the Spinn brews coffee using centrifugal force. Now there’s something I’d never seen before. I’ll get into the details of how this actually works later in my Spinn Coffee Maker review, but let’s just say my interest was piqued.
Aside from its revolutionary brewing method, the Spinn is touted as a fully connected “smart” device that’ll make espresso, coffee and cold brew. Personally, I’ve had mixed results when using apps to control coffee makers, but in this case you pretty much have to use your phone. Sure, the Spinn has a few buttons and lights, but adjusting settings and running cleaning functions has to be done in the app.
In terms of aesthetics, the Spinn Coffee Maker isn’t really going to enhance your kitchen in the same way as a Jura coffee maker or a Breville espresso machine. Still, it will command attention sitting on your kitchen counter.
To be honest I’d imagined the Spinn would be smaller, but it’s actually quite a large machine. I was immediately impressed by the weight and build quality of the thing – the Spinn definitely feels very premium. Plus, I really appreciate the matte finish, which keeps the machine looking clean and classy.
Up top there’s a bean container, below which you’ll find the meager user interface. Further down, the Spinn dispenses coffee from a single spout above the drip tray. And that’s it – on first impressions, the Spinn is a simple, streamlined device with no bells or whistles.
Although I’m categorizing the Spinn as a super automatic espresso machine, there’s no milk system included. However, the manufacturer does offer a separate milk frother. I’ll take a look at that later in my Spinn Coffee Maker Review.
Spinn Coffee Maker Features
As you might imagine, there are tons of features to talk about in this Spinn Coffee Maker review. I’m really excited to tell you more, so let’s keep this ball rolling!
As I already mentioned, the Spinn Coffee Maker’s user interface is a little sparse. There are three preset buttons for espresso, lungo and coffee, as well as a customizable button for personal recipes. Aside from that, there are a few indicator lights for the machine to let you know when cleaning, emptying or refilling needs to happen.
Of course, the manufacturer wants you to use the app to control its coffee machine. However, I feel like the user interface could be expanded on a little. Besides, in my experience, fiddling with settings on your phone can quickly get frustrating and takes longer than pressing a couple of actual buttons.
App and Marketplace
Although I’d be happier if the Spinn Coffee Maker had a more substantial control panel, I have to say the app is pretty darn cool. In fact, I found that the app provided a seamless and highly intuitive user experience.
From the Spinn app you can unlock all the impressive features this machine offers. For starters, you’re able to access a full menu of coffee drinks, then customize settings like strength, spin speed and water level. What’s more, you can do all this from the comfort of your couch if that’s your thing.
Once you’ve connected your phone to the coffee machine, you’ll get notifications when it’s time to perform cleaning and maintenance tasks. Plus, the machine itself will notify you via those flashing lights I mentioned above.
That’s not all, though. The manufacturer also offers a Spinn coffee subscription service, with beans from over a hundred coffee roasters available. What’s really cool is that each bag of beans comes with a unique recipe; you simply scan the label and the roaster’s recommended settings will show up.
If you’ve read my article on coffee marketplaces you’ll know I’m not a fan. However, there’s nothing to say you have to use Spinn’s subscription service.
With an 18 ounce (510 gram) capacity, the Spinn’s bean hopper will easily fit a bag of beans. With that said, even though the hopper has an airtight lid I’d always recommend storing beans in a coffee canister.
Before using the Spinn, the main complaint I’d heard about was the bean container’s shallow design. This can result in beans getting stuck and not flowing into the grinder as they should.
Unfortunately, I struggled with this throughout my testing. All too often I had to keep an eye on things, helping the beans on their way by pushing them into the grinder. I think we can call that a rookie mistake that should be addressed in the next generation Spinn Coffee Maker!
Conical Burr Grinder
The Spinn Coffee Maker is equipped with a stainless steel conical burr grinder. So far, so good. However, you aren’t able to manually change grind settings. What’s more, it’s impossible to access the burrs for cleaning or maintenance.
Now, call me a control freak, but that doesn’t sit too well with me. I like to know what’s happening with variables like grind size when I’m brewing coffee and I like being able to remove the upper burr for cleaning. Of course, the manufacturer likes to talk about how its coffee maker grinds with precision each time. Still, I’d like to at least know what’s happening in there.
Built-in grinder? Been there. Sophisticated app-based operating system? Done that. Centrifugal brewing? Hold on a minute! What the heck is that? Well, now we’re at the part of my Spinn Coffee Maker review where I get to discuss something truly unique and exciting.
The Spinn employs an internal centrifuge that spins ground coffee and water at speeds of up to 5,000 rpm. The brewed coffee is forced through a perforated outer wall and the used grounds are deposited in a collection bin behind the drip tray.
I have to say I was very intrigued by this brewing method. From everything I’d heard, it works really well and produces delicious coffee. However, I’ll admit that I had mixed results and I’m not completely sold on centrifugal brewing. I’ll share my experiences a little later.
Located at the back of the machine, the Spinn’s 40 ounce (1.2 liter) water reservoir is fully detachable for easy filling. With that said, the reservoir needs to be remounted “just so,” or else leaking may occur.
I was happy to see that the water tank can be fitted with an Intenza water filter. Not only will filtered water make your coffee taste better, you won’t need to descale the machine as frequently.
My main complaint about the water reservoir is its limited size. During my testing I found that I had to refill the thing constantly. Still, I guess that’s where the included water supply line would come in handy. Ultimately, if I were to keep the Spinn in my kitchen, I’d definitely plumb the thing in.
While the Spinn app gives you the choice of a number of beverages, they’re all based on either espresso, drip coffee or cold brew. Of course, the Spinn Coffee Maker can’t produce “true” espresso seeing as the preparation method is so different. However, the machine’s approximation of espresso is quite impressive.
In case you’re wondering, the coffee machine alters water, grind size and rotation speed to achieve differences in coffee recipes. Plus, you can adjust strength and size settings to dial in further. As for the whole cold brew thing, I think you know what I’ll say – you simply can’t make cold brew in 60 seconds. Sure, the Spinn may be able to produce an approximation of cold brew, but it’s not going to be the real deal.
With that said, the nitro cold brew is truly fantastic. I’m not sure how the Spinn achieves such a creamy and delicious beverage, but I absolutely loved it!
I actually really like the design of the Spinn’s neat little drip tray, which can be easily pulled out for emptying and cleaning. That’s a relief, because the drip tray fills up fast!
Even better, there’s a nifty shelf which you can use to bring your espresso cups closer to the dispensing spout. The Spinn can brew a maximum of 20 ounces (591 milliliters) at a time, and I found there’s plenty of room for a travel mug. Still, you can create extra headroom by removing the drip tray altogether.
Incidentally, the used grounds collection bin is located behind the drip tray. As if by magic, the used coffee grounds are completely dry, which says a lot about how efficient the centrifugal brewing process is. Plus, I appreciate that the manufacturer suggests spreading the used grounds around your garden. Goodbye wasteful pods, hello sustainable living!
Whether or not the milk frother is worth having isn’t for me to say. However, you might want to check out my guide to steaming milk at home for other options.
The Spinn Coffee Maker does come with a water filter, but there are no cleaning products included. And here’s the rub: you need to use a special Spinn maintenance kit. I imagine using other products will void your warranty, so be careful. Anyway, you can be sure that the app will encourage you to purchase the cleaning kit whenever it has the chance.
The Spinn Coffee Maker comes with a fairly standard one-year warranty that covers any manufacturer defects. There’s also a 45-day “no questions asked” return policy if you simply don’t like the machine. However, that particular policy only applies to coffee makers that have been purchased from the manufacturer’s website.
How to Use the Spinn Coffee Maker
It seems fairly obvious that the Spinn Coffee Maker has been designed for those who care about their coffee but don’t mind sacrificing a lot of control. With that said, the Spinn is far from cheap, so we’re also talking about folks who can afford a machine like this. Anyway, I’m just hoping the Spinn will lure enough people away from using single-serve coffee capsules.
First things first you’ll need to install the Intenza filter and fill the reservoir with cold water from the tap. Next, add coffee beans to the hopper and plug the machine in. Needless to say, you’ll want to download the Spinn app too. Once that’s done, follow the instructions to connect your machine to your network.
Incidentally, if you’ve bought coffee beans from the Spinn marketplace, now’s the time to scan the label. Personally, I was hoping to be able to enter information about the beans I was using, but that’s only an option if you buy from the marketplace.
I think it’s fair to say that those of you who are interested in this machine will be excited about using the app. So, for the purposes of my Spinn Coffee Maker review I’ll give you the lowdown on how to prepare coffee remotely:
Start by making sure the machine is connected to WiFi and is showing up in the app.
Next, select the Maker tab and choose a coffee drink.
Select Make Drink or Customize Drink. In the latter scenario you’ll see a couple of sliding scales for adjusting strength and volume.
Once you’ve selected Make Drink, brewing will begin.
That’s all there is to it! The app will keep you abreast of what’s happening during brewing, and once your coffee is ready there’s nothing left to do except enjoy!
Spinn coffee Maker Observations
Earlier in this Spinn Coffee Maker review I mentioned that I’d had mixed results using the thing. Maybe my expectations were too high, or maybe I just really wanted the Spinn to blow my mind. Either way, I was left feeling a little deflated.
Listen, I was able to make some pretty tasty coffee with the Spinn, and I enjoyed playing with the app. Still, I feel like there are better super automatic options out there, most of which have built-in milk frothers.
Throughout my testing, the espresso from the Spinn was a little disappointing. No matter how I adjusted the strength and volume settings, the espresso came out too watery. Plus, I consistently found grounds in the bottom of my cup, especially when I maxed out the strength setting.
Conversely, the americano and regular coffee from the Spinn was very good, especially when I switched to a single origin coffee from Guatemala.
Perhaps I’d have had better tasting espresso if I’d purchased coffee beans through the Spinn marketplace. That way, the machine would have known what it was dealing with. However, I’m kinda doubtful.
On the bright side, that nitro cold brew I talked about earlier was outstanding, and I can’t stop thinking about it! With that said, I’m not sure it justifies the Spinn Coffee maker’s hefty price tag.
Spinn Coffee Maker Cleaning
As far as cleaning and descaling goes, there isn’t anything really out of the ordinary to deal with. In fact, the Spinn is one of the cleanest coffee makers I’ve ever used. The machine will let you know when it’s time to empty the used grounds container as well as the drip tray. You’ll also be alerted when it’s time to run a cleaning or descaling cycle, and the app will guide you through the steps.
What makes me nervous is the fact that the grinder can’t really be accessed. You can’t remove the upper burr and there’s a plastic shield making it very hard to even get to the grinder. Anyway, I’d recommend wiping out the bean hopper with a paper towel whenever you switch coffee beans. As for the grinder, maybe try and brush it out a little if you can.
The Spinn Coffee Maker user manual makes reference to something called a transport worm, which needs maintenance every so often. This has something to do with the way ground coffee is moved from the grinder to the brewer.
Apparently the machine will let you know when the transport worm needs to be cleaned, but you’ll need to contact the support team for instructions. Why the manufacturer is being so cagey is anyone’s guess!
Spinn Coffee Maker Specifications
|SPINN Coffee Maker|
Super automatic espresso machine
|Removable brew group|
Memo function only
|Removable water reservoir|
|Water reservoir capacity|
40.6 fl oz / 1.2 l
|Number of boilers|
|Maximum cup height|
6.0 in / 15.2 cm
|Minimum cup height|
2.5 in / 6.4 cm
Stainless steel conical burr grinder
|Grind adjustment levels|
|Bean hopper capacity|
18.0 oz / 510.0 g
|Pre-ground coffee bypass|
|Grounds discard container capacity|
|Adjustable coffee temperature|
|Adjustable milk foam temperature|
|Adjustable milk temperature|
|Hot water function|
|Hot milk function|
|Milk foam only option|
18.5 lb / 8.4 kg
14.1 x 8.6 x 13.2 in
Included Accessories: Instruction manual, water filter
|Current price on Amazon|
|BUY NOW ON AMAZON|
Verdict: Spinn Coffee Maker Review
At the start of this Spinn Coffee Maker review I touched on the fact that manufacturers are constantly trying to wow us with something new. All too often that turns out to be something mundane that we’d be better off without. However, at least Spinn has actually delivered an innovative new way to prepare coffee.
There are lots of things to love about the Spinn Coffee maker. For starters, I really enjoyed using the app and I loved how efficient and mess-free the preparation process was. Plus, the machine’s design and build make it feel very high-end. However, at the end of the day I want fantastic coffee at this price point. Unfortunately, the Spinn left me feeling rather frustrated in that regard.
With all that said, I’m fully aware of how many people absolutely love this thing. And as I already mentioned, if the Spinn Coffee Maker can convert just a few coffee lovers away from using pods, I’d call it a win for the planet.
What’s your experience with the Spinn Coffee Maker? Have I been unfair to this centrifugal brewer? I look forward to your comments!
Spinn Coffee Maker Review FAQ
As an alternative to a machine that uses coffee pods, the Spinn is absolutely worth it. Using whole coffee beans will only result in a better-tasting cup of coffee.
You can definitely use your own coffee beans with Spinn. However, make sure not to use overly dark and oily coffee beans, as they can clog up the coffee maker’s insides.
The Spinn Coffee Maker is made in The Netherlands.
Although its grinder is fairly noisy, the Spinn Coffee Maker is surprisingly quiet when it’s brewing coffee.
To make your Spinn coffee stronger, use the app to customize the brewing parameters.