With its first two products, the Aries grinder and Katze scale, a new Taiwan-based equipment company called Mx. Cool is hoping to make quality espresso preparation a breeze.
Introducing some novel features to their respective categories while targeting high-end home or prosumer users, the Aries and the Katze made their public debut last month at the 2023 SCA Expo in Portland. Oregon.
Mx. Cool Aries Grinder
The Aries grinder features 83-millimeter, titanium-coated conical burrs of an original, in-house design.
A brushless 200-watt motor spins the burrs within a user-adjustable speed range of 90-150 RPM. The grinder’s inner cone burr is held by magnets that can be quick-released by hand for easy access and cleaning, while a locking mechanism preserves the grinder’s settings and alignment.
“I was a barista for six or seven years, and the main thing, the most troublesome thing to do every week, is to clean your burrs and also to recalibrate after cleaning,” Mx. Cool Sales Representative Daniel Hsu told Daily Coffee News at the SCA Expo. “But now we’ve fixed that. We have a lock here, so even after cleaning this [setting] is stuck there, it won’t move.”
The single-dose grinder also features a rotating lever that continually sweeps the opening between the hopper and the chamber. This gently spinning arm keeps coffee beans moving steadily into the burrs at a consistent rate.
A magnetically attached receptacle catches grinds exiting the chute. Retained particles can be knocked free through an included knocker on the grinder’s side. The circular platform beneath the receptacle is designed to accommodate forthcoming accessories that will further push the bounds of functional espresso equipment design.
“In the future we are going to make espresso accessories, but we are going to make it something different,” Mx. Cool Salesperson Peter Yang told DCN in Portland, adding that new tools are likely to be displayed at the Taiwan International Coffee Show in Taipei this November.
The Mx. Cool Katze Scale
Referencing the German word for cat, the Katze scale offers a variety of modes for different brew methods and workflows, including automatic taring.
The signature feature is a display panel that recedes into the body of the scale beneath the tray. At the push of a button, the panel springs out like a pouncing cat.
Partly for protection and partly just for fun, the design provides additional stability to the tray, which provides protection to the lode cell when stacked or during travel without the use of a case. Mx. Cool says the Katze can withstand 12 kilograms (26.5 pounds) of pressure with the display inside without putting the lode cell at risk.
Mx. Cool Taiwan
Founded approximately three years ago, Mx. Cool is an independent offshoot of the Taipei City-based plastic injection and CNC machining company Proch.
“The main thing about us is we design and we manufacture our own coffee equipment, all in Taiwan, specifically in the northern part of Taiwan around Taipei,” said Hsu. “We have the ability to create our own things because we have our own factory. Within half an hour, we can just drive over there.”
Mx. Cool products will enter mass production in time to ship domestically in Taiwan this fall, and the company hopes to accommodate U.S. shipping by the holiday season. The company has not yet landed on final prices for the U.S. market, but currently projections include $130 for the Katze scale and approximately $1,400 for the Aries grinder.
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Howard Bryman is the associate editor of Daily Coffee News by Roast Magazine. He is based in Portland, Oregon.