Introducing the Grout Grate.
Hot news this week a brand new gadget landed at Happy Donkey HQ. Original and innovative the Grout Grate if nothing else is refreshing.
First of all the Grate comes retail boxed. The product consists of a coffee bean shaped piece of rubber. Inside the rubber outer is a very fine mesh implant.
The grout grate is designed to sit underneath coffee cups or espresso shot glasses. Sat on the drip tray of a commercial coffee machine the grate catches loose grounds. It also works by catching grinds when the group head is purged.
In short it’s a coffee machine waste out pipe blockage prevention mechanism. Something I have always wanted. The grouts or grinds collect in the mesh. The Barista picks up the grate, slaps it against the bar in the knock drawer and gives it a wipe. Consequently more grinds end up in the knock box. Not jammed in the waste out pipe on the espresso machine.
Why the Grout Grate is relevant.
Once upon a time when dinosaurs roamed the earth and it was possible to get away with having a black and white television license. I used to go out and help customers with commercial espresso machine problems.
Most of all problems were scale related or pilot error. Second to that came waste pipe blockages. These days coffee engineers more often than not turn up on a horse. Armed with a box of cheap spanners and a couple of screwdrivers a blockage can cost circa £85.00 to clear. Some of these individuals are VAT registered as well.
Add to that the cost of having a machine down and before you know it you’re having a bad week. For half that price you can have two grates in place on the drip tray. Look professional and avoid the embarrassment of having a coffee machine go down.
Who will want a Grout Grate?
I see two kinds of audience for this product. First of all and most important, the busy commercial espresso machine owner. This product is ideal for venues which have a high turnover of staff as well as a high volume of customers. Underpaid and rarely loved the average coffee machine operator isn’t concerned with stray grouts. This is now taken care of to a degree.
Secondly the fashion Barista may well find themselves drawn to this product, after all the grout grate does look good. It’s not espresso machine jewellery as such but it is a coffee gadget. A talking point for those interested customers curious about the kit which makes the drink that helps them start the day. Or cope with it half way through !
Most of all it will clearly only be bought by those who have a plumbed in coffee machine with a waste out pipe.
Concluding it is fair to say here we have something really new and genuinely useful. The ground grate is not cheap for what it is. But it is value for money when considering what it is it could do.
There’s nothing else on the market which falls into the bracket of preventative maintenance at this price. It’s both functional and attractive. No other product on the market at this moment in time performs this function.
If there is one criticism I can throw it is the non commitment to announce if it dishwasher friendly. My guess will be most Baristas will simply soak this product in some diluted Puly Caff to clean it anyway.
In the office I have a full head height cupboard full of coffee ‘innovation’ which has proved to be a waste of space. This will not be going in that cupboard. It’s a big thumbs up.
Best used in conjunction with a knock box or drawer, read reviews on knock boxes here.