The Peugeot Paris is the quintessential pepper mill. But is this classic still worth your money?
Peugeot Paris Basics
The Peugeot Paris is probably the pepper mill you think of when you think of a pepper mill. It’s a long, tool, piece of wood that has been run through a lathe so that it looks like a collection of rounded shape… almost like a ornate baluster (the part of your stairs under the handrail).
The Paris is sold in a number of types of wood — included fancy varieties like olive wood — as well as the more common finishes which include chocolate, gloss black, red, aged wood, and natural (which I bought and you can see in the pictures).
This is a wood grinder with a metal top piece, metal central shaft, and metal burrs for grinding the black pepper.
The grinder is fully adjustable using a dial at the bottom of the grinder. Basically the foot of the grinder is a dial that can be turned to produce a fine to very coarse grind. It doesn’t goes quite as fine or quite as course as some of the competition, but it’s still a nice, usable range that goes from a light dusty to a cracked pepper. This dial is easy to turn, but easy to forget about as it’s not very visible. Peugeot calls this their “u’Select” system.
While the grinding pieces (the burrs) are metal and the exterior is beech wood, some of the fitting on the inside are plastic. These are mostly fitting and retaining rings, etc. that aren’t load bearing, but it’s still a bit disappointing to see plastic component in such a heritage and wonderful item. None of the plastic is used in a way where it should ever break and it’s not near the burr, so there is little fear of it mixing with your food.
Peugeot Paris Grinder Performance
The Paris grinder works great. It’s easy to hold, easy to adjust, and easy to turn. It can be opened in a moment and refills, but the cap piece has never come loose on me so I’ve never spilled any pepper from the grinder (something I’ve done many times with my OXO grinder).
I’ve found the grind range to be very good, even though the settings are more course than with some other grinders. I’m not a pepper-size perfectionist though, so that’s fine by me.
One thing I like about this grinder is that it doesn’t leave a little trail of pepper on the counter every time I put it down. My previous grinders have done this and well, it’s annoying.
I will note that the Paris is sold in many sizes — from very short to quite tall. The pepper capacity of the grinder will depend on the size, the performance of the grinder does not vary based on the size as all the internal components are the same. So get the big one if you think it looks nice or you don’t enjoy refilling your pepper grinder, but don’t get it for improved grinding.
Buying A Peugeot Paris Grinder
The Peugeot Paris grinder is sold in a wide range of colors and sizes. Choosing one can be a challenge.
The most common size to buy a Paris in is the 9-inch size. This isn’t too big and it isn’t too small. The 5- and 7-inch sizes work great but will feel a bit short. The 12- and 16-inches sizes go from large to tremendous and the 16-incher is better suited for a restaurant than for a home.