Vitamix: a wood-chipper for food


#1

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#2

This is an advertorial, right?


#3

But, will it blend?


#4

And I thought my $90 kitchen aid was expensive... It has no problem with ice, and even if it did, $600??! If the kitchen aid died every year toward the end of the warranty, and I replaced it every time, each would last 2 years and I could buy 6 for the same price, lasting 12 years.


#5

It's not an advertorial. Unless you mean for the webcomic.


#7

Full disclosure: Not only do I own a Vitamix, but my wife also works for the company.

I was among those who thought "$400 for a blender? Lunacy!" But then we got one when she started working at the company. Holy good god, it is phenomenal. It can smoothie anything. It makes soups. It makes sauces. It is, truly a ridiculous machine. I love it.


#8

Got one. It's also good for making sorbets (which is why my wife sprang for it when it was on offer as a special deal at Costco).

You know the movie trope where the "good" guy has the "bad" guy's hand and threatens to shove it in the piranha tank if he refuses to spill the beans? This is that piranha tank. But there's no need to mess with the poor guy's hands -- just dunk the can of beans in the Vitamix and it'll shred it in seconds!


#9

I've had an Oster Beehive blender for close to 20 years, doing smoothies with lots of ice cubes and I've always been happy with it..
Better yet, they sell replacement parts on Amazon. Blades, seals, carafes, even the base spindle.
I replaced my blades and gasket a few years ago for around $15.
The price on the blender is still $70.
I can't imagine anything a $600 blender could do for me that this can't do.
And it just still LOOKS so damn cool. One little On/Off/Pulse toggle switch. That's it.


#10

i make raw cat food at home, before i got a serious meat grinder i used the vitamix to grind chicken bones. no problem. aspiring serial killers, take note!


#11

I've got a Oster, not quite like that, but most blenders I have used run into the same problem:

The blending area is very small compared to the actual width of the blender jar. Or to explain, look at the bottom of the Vitamix blender jar, see how it is almost as wide as the mouth? Food never really gets funneled and compressed and thus stuck. With the Oster and others as it tries to pull food down everything just gets stuck.

Cook's Illustrated ranks the Vitamix as #1 and as a very close second a Ninja. And why, because they moved the blades all the way up the blender jar, thus eliminating any chance for things getting stuck.


#13

While I don't disagree, the Vitamix is amazing, it's also super expensive relatively speaking. I'll stick with my Ninja Pro.


#14

I've owned and used a polycarbonate Oster for over 20 years now that still chops ice fine. In a pinch it's even a perfectly cromulent coffee grinder. Even if I had to replace it four times I think I'd still come out ahead in total cost of ownership.

Hell I've even made rice flour with it and it still works like when I brought it home.


#15

Yes, they're expensive, but if you use it you will really get your money's worth out of it. Recently my wife and I ate raw for a couple of weeks. Many of the foods where impossible to make with our traditional blender. And it's a very good blender. For example, you cannot put parsley or kale in a regular blender and end up with anything but confetti that sticks to your teeth. Put it in one of these mighty blenders and you get a green drink with some pulp.

So, expensive? yes. But they're able to do things you just can't do with a blender. Like make peanut butter.


#16

I've had occasion to use an Oster Beehive in a profession bar setting along side a standard commercial grade blender. And despite it being a decent blender by home standards we never use the Oster unless the standard blender is out of commission. It doesn't blend nearly as quickly or thoroughly or with as much control, particularly when attempting to puree anything or work with small amounts. By comparison its unstable, difficult to work with and prone to failure. Its simply not up to the task of hard professional use.

All the Vitamix really is a commercial grade blender. All the tasks its lauded for accomplishing are standard things a good commercial blender should be able to do all day every day without failure. And while its more expensive than the cheap ones, its not as expensive as the most expensive ones. Having worked with similar blenders before I can tell you they are worlds better than the usual consumer alternatives, but I can not imagine they are all that much better than their commercial competition. By reports they are a great commercial grade blender, but they're hardly the only option. And some quick searching indicates Vitamix's commercial grade offerings are a bit cheaper than the home models. Despite being likely identical.


#17

We recently bought the Blendtec, a competitor to the Vitamix. (Woodchipper you say? We call ours the iPhone chipper: http://www.willitblend.com/videos/view/129) It was on sale at our local Costco (for about half what I think this one is adveretised at) and while still expensive, well worth it so far.
We researched both brands and ended up choosing the Vitamix for a number of reasons. To start, there's no plunger to mess with making the whole machine shorter and it fits under counter: Blentec has a different carafe that has a flat side that eliminates the need to push food back down to the blades. It has a wipe clean front, counts the number of smoothies and drinks you make and has programmed buttons that automatically control the blade at different speeds depending on what you're making.

All in all I think they're prolly both great, but we saw the blendtec as the better deal for us.


#18

I have one.

I named it "Violet"

Why? Its full name is "Violent Violet".

I was seriously frightened at the power this thing had the first time I used it. Not unsafe, mind you, the ease with which she tore through that bag of frozen solid peaches left me speachless... i'll never forget our first time. lol smile


#19

That's hilarious that you talk about the Blendtec not needing a plunger! I just saw a guy demoing the Blendtec at a Costco. His ice cream was stuck and not moving so he took the lid off and used a rubber spatula to get it going again. Real safe! The Vitamix tamper is a tool that processes the food to perfection. It's so funny that you talk about it like it's a negative thing. Turn on Top Chef tomorrow night and see which machine they're using.

I wouldn't trade my Vitamix for anything. I've had my 5000 for 8 years and it's still going strong!


#20

I really shouldn't be surprised every time I encounter people on the internet being passionate about very surprising things. And yet, over and over again, I am.

I love you internet.


#21

This.

I can't imagine ever having the cash to justify spending $600+ on a blender, bar winning the lottery or suddenly doubling our household income... But man, I really, REALLY wish I could justify it.


#22

Do what I did and buy a recon. The container is brand new and you still get a long warranty. Half the price : ) I never pay retail. It's worth it. The money I save in smoothies and hummus alone!