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on August 16, 2000
I purchased this after spending 2 hours zesting limes for a gourmet cookie recipe with the traditional potato-peeler+ food processor method. The most time consuming part is carefully scraping way all the white pith on the inside of the peel. The pith is very bitter and can ruin your recipe. This zester did the same job in 30 seconds and didn't even touch the pith. Just pure, perfect lime zest with no effort. Totally worth its weight in gold. Now I can make those cookies again without my hands cramping up after hours scraping the peels. Who has time for that?
I've also started using it for grating parmesan. Definately takes Ceaser salads and pasta up a notch. I'm purchasing several more as gifts for my friends. Would make an incredible (and cheap) holiday/birthday gift for anyone, even the casual cook. Please note that the size of the grated zest or cheese is very fine and not ideal as a garnish. Parmesan or Romano grated with this tool melts quickly into the pasta, and doesn't lend much to the presentation. Tastes great, but hard to see. If you're looking for a garnishing tool, this is not it.
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on October 8, 2003
This is probably the only tool in my kitchen that I've also found in my dad's workshop. I use it for a variety of grating tasks including hard cheeses, chocolate, nutmeg, cinnamon, and citrus zests.
For hard cheeses such as parmesan, you'll get a nice, light fluffy pile of cheese as opposed to the grittier result from a traditional box grater. This is because the Microplane actually produces tiny, thin strips as opposed to hard little granules. Your cheese will melt faster and will actually look somewhat elegant perched in a snowy mound atop a bowl of pasta.
Hard spices such as nutmeg grate quickly and easily, and it's a snap to run the Microplane over an orange or lemon for just the right amount of zest and no pith (unless you press to hard or work the same spot too long). With wetter foods like zest, you will have to slide the resulting product from the backside of the plane as it does tend to stick, but this only takes a quick flick of your finger. Chocolate will need to be quite cold so that it's hard enough to grate without melting or slipping.
Finally, the Microplane is extremely easy to use because you can grate right into the pot or onto a plate. It's long enough to rest on the lip of most bowls, and it's elegant enough to bring to the table. In fact, we recently had a dinner party and we passed around this tool so that our guests could grate just the right amount of bittersweet chocolate into their black-bean chili.
Cleaning can be a bit tricky with this tool, since its sharp holes will catch on a towel when you try to dry it. Personally, I find that a few hard taps dislodge any gunk and I seldom need to actually wash it. But if you do get it wet, be sure to dry it thoroughly as you would with any fine kitchen knife. If you wipe toward the handle, it shouldn't be a problem.
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on November 7, 2003
When I received this wonderful product I placed it in the drawer and mostly forgot about it until it was time to grate some parmesan cheese. I remembered I had bought it, brought it out and pressing the cheese hard against the grater I ran it down. To my absolute amazement the cheese came out the underside of the grater with total ease. I ran the cheese across it again, this time, pressing lightly and the same thing happened. Whenever I had grated cheeses before the job was ardurous, very time consuming, and the result was usually more of a powder then nicely sectioned flakes of hard cheese.
This grater is made of the very best material and extremely sharp! I can see owning this tool for many years because of its quality. I am very pleased with my purchase and encourage others to buy one.
The grater came with the manufacturers "slip cover" over it and I decided to keep it on the grater when not in use for two reasons:
1. The grating surface is very sharp. It would be easy to cut yourself pulling this out of the drawer. Ouch!
2. I want to preserve the grating surface's blades for as long as possible because this is now one of my favorite tools.
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on November 28, 2002
The entire Microplane line is a marvel of culinary engineering. The well-stocked kitchen will have several Microplane graters, but this one is perhaps the most versatile.
Just a few quick and easy passes around your favorite citrus, and you've got a nice neat pile of zest, pith-free, suitable for your angel food cake, dessert souffle, or fruit cookie. You will never again buy pre-grated Parmesan cheese, nor will you ever again waste your money on the cardboard specks your grocery store calls pre-grated nutmeg. (And trust me, you haven't had eggnog until you've had it dusted with fresh nutmeg.) Need chocolate dust? Not a problem. Takes a couple of seconds.
Buy a whole set of Microplanes and throw away your uncomfortable, unsafe, and hard-to-clean box grater. One of the best low-tech kitchen innovations in years.
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on June 22, 2000
The Microplane grater was origionally designed as a wood rasp and found its way into the kitchen. The teeth are sharp, stay that way and don't clog up the way other fine graters do, so it's a snap to clean. It works spectacularly with hard cheeses like parmasan, shaving it effortlously into tiny curls. Because of this unique shape, the cheese melts almost instantly on hot pasta. When measuring parmasan cheese grated with the Microplane, make sure to press down on it in the measuring cup or measure by weight, because it's curled shape increases the volume of the cheese substantially compared with cheese grated with a conventional grater. As was noted it is a terrific zester and worth the price for that function alone.
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on April 17, 2014
Actually, this product doesn't deserve 1 star (it's great--I would give it 5 stars for sure).

But I wanted to warn people to make sure they check what product they receive for this Microplane 40020 Classic Zester/Grater, because the one I received today was not a genuine Microplane. Someone else also posted a review saying they got a fake, so please be aware.

The biggest sign is no authentic Microplane logo on the handle (the one I received just has some generic font that says "Microplane") and the plastic shield/cover is also generic (see some of the customer pictures for what it should look like). Another noticeable difference is that the genuine Microplane has grater "teeth" even on the sides, but this one doesn't. The one I received also had rubber tips, but that is a feature that is only on the genuine Microplane Premium grater.
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on July 29, 2003
I have spent hours in my kitchen preparing lemon zest for a catering job, using a traditional garnish zester. But since I bought my Microplane, I have thrown all my other graters and zesters away. This simple little file, that looks like it belongs in a toolbox, not a gadget drawer, is one of the most useful tools in my kitchen. It is an amazing timesaver. Minimalist design makes it seem like a work of modern art. But, a warning for prospective users - if you've ever ground your knuckles into a box grater, be careful on this tool. I looked away from my work for one second and ended up grating down to the bone on the second knuckle on my index finger. This baby is sharp!! Really sharp!! Until they make Kevlar knuckle guards, pay attention to what you're zesting. I use it all the time, but I have a cautious respect for it now.
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on July 30, 2014
I loved this microplane grater for the 18 months that I had it, but it is not well-made where the steel grating blade attaches to the plastic handle. The blade has slowly detached from the plastic handle becoming more and more unstable. The last time I used it, it finally completely detached from the handle. I am posting a picture to alert other consumers to this problem. There is no way to fix it, so I am left with a blade with no handle, which I can't use safely for grating. Worst of all, I have to place the large useless plastic handle into the trash to head to a landfill somewhere. :( I will purchase a new microplane zester that is all metal construction to avoid this problem. I can't recommend this product, despite the razor sharp blades.
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on February 4, 2014
This is the #1 Best Seller on Amazon and it's durable, sharp, and includes a clear sheath for storage. I've used it on cheese and zesting and it performs perfectly on both! The blade is not long enough to span the entire lid of a 5qt Kitchenaid mixer bowl, but stable enough to zest with ease. Blades are incredibly sharp for a nice clean motion.

I uploaded a photo of the blade showing rust beneath the handle, even when I handwash/dry. The company informed me that this is made with medical-grade steel and shouldn't rust, but were kind enough to replace mine without hassle which is definitely a plus in dealing with their customer service.
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on October 18, 2000
I already own a more traditional zester, the kind with 5 or 6 little holes across the top. It does a great job when I want bigger pieces of zest for an accent or a garnish. But when it comes to things like recipes calling for the zest of one lemon to mix into other ingredients, I would have to take all those little strips of zest and chop them up. Now I have microplane and life is wonderful. Zip, zip, zip and I've got a lemon's worth of perfect tiny zest. I'm looking forward to trying it on things like chocolate, nutmeg and particularly ginger. Buy this. Really.
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