The Remi Grinder: Helor 101’s Perfect Successor?

Introducing the Remi hand grinder by Option-O—a device lauded for its gorgeous design, sleek wooden handle, and top-notch performance. But hold on, isn’t this just another Helor 101? The striking similarities between the two grinders have sparked much debate. After owning a Helor 101 for nearly three years, it’s time to dissect the differences between the two models and see if the Remi addresses the common issues associated with its predecessor.

Carved from a single block of aluminum, the Remi stands out with its eye-catching aesthetics and practical design features. Sporting a 38mm stainless steel conical burr set, a magnetic grounds collection cup, and precise stepless grind adjustment, the grinder is both functional and stylish. The merger of Helor Design and Option O has resulted in the creation of this new line-up, including the Remi. Although it bears a strong resemblance to its predecessor, subtle enhancements have made it easier and more enjoyable to use. Let’s dive deeper into the build quality, design, and unique features of the Remi.

Build Quality & Design

Like its predecessor, the Helor 101, the Option-O Remi boasts a streamlined and elegant design, carved out of a single block of aluminum. This unibody construction is not just aesthetically pleasing but also serves a functional purpose by adding rigidity. This rigidity helps to keep the burrs in permanent alignment, ensuring a consistent grind with no wobble. The grinding process is facilitated by two bearings, one at either end of the central column, allowing for a smoother operation compared to many other hand grinders like the Porlex or Hario Skerton.

Inspecting the main chamber, a noticeable change is the reduction in the number of stabilizer struts. Unlike the Helor 101, which had three stabilizer struts, the Remi has only two. This alteration might seem minor but makes a significant difference in ease of use by making it easier to pour coffee beans into the grinder.

Grind Adjustments

The grind adjustment mechanism of the Remi is another area where significant improvements have been made. The Remi uses a stepless dial located at the bottom of the grinder. This feature allows for precise grind size adjustments, enabling users to make minor tweaks rather than large steps. This is a considerable advantage over the older Helor 101 dial, which was notorious for getting stuck.

Another noteworthy upgrade is the magnetic grounds collection cup. This feature replaces the previous rubber gasket mechanism, which often resulted in spilled coffee grounds. The magnetic attachment ensures a secure fit and makes it incredibly easy to detach and reattach the collection cup with just a slight twist, making the user experience much more pleasant.


The hopper capacity of the Remi is approximately 35 grams, which makes it slightly smaller than the Helor 101. While it’s adequate for brewing a 500ml V60 at a 1:15 brew ratio, it may fall short if you prefer darker roasts that are less dense. Typically, you might be able to fit around 30 grams of dark roasted coffee and up to 38 grams of very light roast. This slight reduction in capacity is something to consider, especially for those looking to brew multiple cups in a single grind session.


Option-O offers two different burr sets for the Remi: conventional and contemporary. The conventional burr set is ideal for filter coffee methods like the Kalita Wave, AeroPress, and V60. This set minimizes fines, resulting in a clean and transparent cup of coffee. Although it’s possible to grind for espresso using these burrs, it can be time-consuming.

The contemporary burr set, on the other hand, is designed specifically for espresso. These burrs are coated with titanium nitrate (TiN), which helps extend their lifespan up to five times compared to uncoated burrs. The TiN coating not only reduces surface friction but also minimizes wear, making the grinding process quicker and more efficient. Switching between burr sets is straightforward and can be done using the included hex wrench.

Grind Range & Rating

Thanks to its high-quality construction and precise design, the Remi offers a wide grind range. The bearings at both ends of the central column ensure smooth operation with no burr wobble, providing even and uniform grinds from fine to medium-coarse settings. However, when set to very coarse settings, some inconsistency in grind size can occur, producing a few more boulders than ideal.

The grinder excels in producing filter coffee, particularly with the conventional burrs. Adjusting the grind size is a simple process: remove the grounds collection cup, hold the crank arm steady, and turn the dial at the bottom. To give a practical reference, two full turns of the dial are suitable for AeroPress or James Hoffman’s V60 recipe, while three full turns work well for regular V60 and Kalita Wave brews.

Is it Good for Espresso?

While the Remi is capable of grinding for espresso, it may not be the most efficient choice for this brewing method. The micro-adjustment capability ensures that you can dial in espresso precisely, but the time required for grinding is a drawback. For example, grinding 15 grams of coffee at an espresso setting takes about a minute and fifteen seconds using the contemporary burrs at two full turns of the dial. If you require a finer grind size or a larger dose, expect to spend even more time cranking.

Therefore, while the Remi can indeed handle espresso grinding, the manual effort and time involved might make it less appealing for those who frequently brew espresso.


Durability is one of the Remi’s strong suits. The grinder is constructed entirely out of metal, making it highly robust. The main chamber, lid, and crank arm are all solid metal, with no plastic or glass components that could easily break. Weighing just under 600 grams, the Remi is relatively heavy but this adds to its durability.

This sturdiness makes it an excellent choice for travel, although the weight might be a concern for some. Unlike lighter options like the Porlex Mini, which weighs around 250 grams, the Remi’s heft provides peace of mind knowing that it can withstand rough handling during travel.

Ease of Use

The Remi is designed with user-friendliness in mind. Adjusting the grind size is simple, requiring no complicated steps. Even tasks that are usually tricky, like aligning the burrs, are straightforward. The included hex wrench makes swapping or realigning the burrs a hassle-free process, further enhancing its ease of use.

Overall, the uncomplicated nature of the Remi makes it accessible to both novice and experienced users alike.

Customer Care

One area where the Remi falls short is customer service. Despite the high quality of the grinder itself, Option-O’s customer service has been criticized for being unresponsive. The company’s Instagram account contains several posts with unanswered customer queries, corroborating this issue. Messages sent to the company’s customer service are often ignored or require multiple follow-ups to get a response.

This lack of customer support can be a significant drawback for potential buyers who value good customer service.


Priced at around $230 USD, the Remi is on the higher end of the spectrum for hand grinders. If you wish to optimize it for espresso by purchasing the contemporary burr set, you’ll need to spend an additional $60, bringing the total to approximately $290 USD. While the Remi offers exceptional grind consistency and build quality, it faces stiff competition from other premium hand grinders like the Comandante C40, which also provide excellent performance and better customer service.

In terms of value, the Remi is competitive but not exceptional. It holds its own among other high-end manual grinders but doesn’t stand out as a must-have.

In conclusion, the Remi hand grinder by Option-O proves to be a worthy successor to the Helor 101. It excels in design and build quality, carved from a single block of aluminum for added rigidity and enhanced performance. This construction ensures that the burrs remain in permanent alignment, providing a consistent grind with no wobble. The use of two bearings adds to the smooth operation, making it superior to other hand grinders like the Porlex and Hario Skerton.

The Remi’s stepless grind adjustment and magnetic grounds collection cup are significant improvements over its predecessor. These features make it easier to achieve the desired grind size and simplify the overall grinding process. However, its slightly smaller hopper capacity might be a drawback for those who prefer brewing larger quantities or using darker roasts.

The option to choose between conventional and contemporary burr sets adds versatility to the Remi, catering to both filter coffee and espresso enthusiasts. The contemporary burr set, with its titanium nitrate coating, is particularly beneficial for espresso grinding, extending the burrs’ lifespan and reducing wear.

While the Remi offers excellent grind consistency and build quality, its customer service leaves much to be desired. Many customers have reported unresponsive service, which could be a significant drawback for potential buyers.

Priced at around $230 USD, with an additional cost for the contemporary burr set, the Remi falls into the higher end of the hand grinder market. Although it offers great value for its features, it faces stiff competition from other premium hand grinders like the Comandante C40, which also provide excellent performance and better customer service.

Ultimately, the Remi is a robust and reliable hand grinder that will serve its users well for years. However, potential buyers should consider their priorities, such as customer service and grinding speed, before making a purchase. If one can overlook the customer service issue and the manual effort required for espresso grinding, the Remi stands out as a solid choice for any coffee aficionado.