9 of The Best Coffee Grinders of 2017
Coffee. Nectar of the gods. Crutch of the working classes. Everyones favourite way to kick-start the day.
Coffee has become an ingrained part of our culture and our lifestyles. When we underperform in the morning we are apt to blame a lack of coffee and call ourselves coffee zombies. When we need to push late into the night we need that essential hot coffee caffeine kick to keep us going. We love us some coffee at any time of day or night
BUT, like with most things, quality matters. And with coffee quality matters more than most other areas in life. Its not for nothing that many people use lifes too short for bad coffee as a metaphor for not wanting any low quality things in their lives.
The Best Coffee Grinder for 2017
- Capresso 565.05 Infinity Conical Burr Grinder, Stainless Steel
- Baratza 586 Baratza Virtuoso Coffee Grinder
- Capresso 560.01 Infinity Burr Grinder
- MACAP M4 Stepless Adjustment Espresso Grinder
- Baratza Encore Conical Burr Coffee Grinder
- Breville BCG820BSSXL The Smart Grinder Pro Coffee Bean Grinder
- DeLonghi America KG521 Dedica Conical Burr Grinder
- Bodum Bistro Electric Burr Coffee Grinder
- Secura Automatic Conical Burr Coffee Grinder CBG-018
Unfortunately you cant have a private barista lovingly crafting you the perfect espresso / press / drip coffee in your kitchen 24 hour a day. BUT you dont have to be a coffee snob to know that the powdered, freeze-dried abomination that is instant coffee just doesnt cut it.
Now heres where things get tricky. You can brew pre-ground and store bought. Or you can take that extra bit of time for the zen like ritual of grinding your own and earning that extra kick and aroma that comes from fresh, home ground beans. Sure, you may not be able to afford that barista, but brewing with home ground beans you are as close as you are ever going to get.
So, its time to take it up a notch. Gear up and grind your own. And we are here to guide you to the grinder best suited to you and your brew style – be it drip, stove pot, French Press, aeropress, or mini home espresso maker. So, as you read through the grinders weve found keep in mind the way you like your coffee and anticipate making that perfect cup in the comfort of your own home.
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Coffee Grinders Buying Guide
What is a coffee grinder?
The simple answer to that question is a coffee grinder is a machine that is used to crush whole coffee beans into a powder in order to make coffee. There are many different types of grinders that use different blades, grind to different coarsenesss and therefore give you different tastes and types of coffee.
The only way to make a good cup of coffee is to grind the beans so as to expose and allow for the extraction of the oils and flavors held inside. Ground coffee is what allows for the water to permeate through the bean and extract those flavors you are looking for.
Today we have many different types of coffee – from the instant coffees you can buy in the supermarkets, to whole fresh beans that need to be ground before preparing your drink. The difference in the two is marked. As soon as your beans are ground and are exposed to air, they begin to go stale, this changes the flavor of your coffee – and not for the better. The sooner you make your cup of coffee after grinding out your beans, the better the quality of coffee you will get. Therefore the instant coffees on the market are a poor substitute for having a grinder that will ensure you a robust and flavor filled cup of coffee in the morning to get you going.
So what kind of grinders to you get? Well, there are many choices out there: you can choose between a manual or automatic, one that is meant for commercial use or for home brewing only and lastly one that uses blades as opposed to a burr grinder. The general consensus is that a burr grinder gives you a better quality of grind that any other. The reason for this is that a blade grinder gives you very little control, the only way to get a very fine grind is to grind the beans longer. This, in turn, leads to friction which causes heat which burns your coffee beans and decreases their flavor profile. Burr grinders are serrated steel parts with conical or flat surfaces that fit into each other. Burr grinders crush your beans into a consistent and uniform grind which allows the beans to release their flavor simultaneously when preparing your cup of java. Burr grinders also allow for adjustments to the grind to be made so you can get an espresso or a press coffee and anything in-between.
How do I know which one to choose?
Which coffee grinder you choose will depend on a lot of factors. The first question is your budget. Blade grinders are a lot cheaper than burr grinders. The next question is what type of coffee do you enjoy? Do you like to experiment with your brews changing the coarseness of the grind to develop different flavors? Lastly, do you need something for home brewing or commercial brewing such as for a coffee shop?
Let us start with the different between a blade grinder and a burr grinder. A blade grinder is a grinder that has a motor and a blade. It is simple to use, you just throw the beans in the hop and press grind. The finer you want your beans ground, the longer you leave the grinder on. The other and more preferred option is the burr grinder. Most aficionados on coffee will tell you that if you are going to go through the trouble of grinding your own beans, then you have to invest in a good quality burr grinder. The burr can grind you anything from espresso to drip to French press at the press of a button. The burr grinder offers you easy use and multiple settings in order to get your brew just right for you. Burr grinders will also reduce the speed of the grind, which lessens the friction and enhances the flavor as your beans will not get burnt from too much heat during the grinding process.
Once you have selected what type of blade you will use, the next question is whether you want a stepped or a stepless grinder? The difference is in a number of choices of grind you get. With a stepped grinder you choose a setting where the grinder will stop, with a steppless you do not. It is as simple as that. The difference is that with a stepless grinder you have an infinite number of different grinds you can make. That is not to say you wont get plenty of options with a stepped grinder, but with a steppless, you get to make minute adjustments to your grind, which in turn alters the taste of your brew.
The next question you have to ask is, do you want a doser or doserless grinder. Firstly what is a doser? A doser is designed to help you to measure out the number of cups you need to grind for. It is mostly used in a commercial set up where the need for having a few doses prepared in advance is necessary. A doser can usually hold up to around 6 cups of ready ground beans. The home brewer, however, does not really need this facility and it does create more work when it comes to cleaning your grinder. Usually, at home you will only need to make one cup or maybe a couple if you are having guests. Using a doser in the home setting could lead to wastage, as ground coffee left standing becomes stale and unusable.
Another important question to ask yourself is if you want an automatic or manual grinder. I suppose the answer to that is: do you have access to electricity all the time? If you are an outdoors type of person then perhaps a manual would suit your needs better. But why not get a manual for when you are away and an automatic for when at home?
Is there a blade selection for ground coarseness?
The coarseness of your coffee is determined by the grind. There is no blade selection per s for determining the grind of the coffee, it is all dependant on time of grind. Espresso and Turkish coffees require a very fine grind in order to be the best they can be. Your press coffees require a coarser grind in order for them the deliver the taste you are looking for.
So how do you determine the coarseness of your grind? For blade grinders, the longer you grind, the finer the grind. But there are a lot of things to consider here. If you are using a simple blade grinder, the longer you grind, the more heat you generate and heat is an enemy of a good grind as it burns you coffee taking away some of the flavour. With burr grinders, the gap between the burrs determines the type of grind. A large gap results in a coarse grind and a narrow gap results in a fine grind. As soon as pieces of the bean are small enough they fall between the burrs and into the grind collector. This means that for burr grinders a finer grind also takes longer than a coarse grind but at least your whole set of beans is not exposed to constant heat and friction as they would be in a blade grinder.
The coarser your coffee the less surface area is exposed to water so the less flavor is released. The finer the grind, such as in espresso, the more robust and flavorsome your coffee will be. Grinding too coarse will make your coffee weak and have less flavor, however too fine and you will end up with bitter coffee. The size of the grind determines the taste of your coffee.
Do all coffee grinders work fo a filter system?
Yes, in fact, all coffee grinders will work for a filter system. The coffee grinder is there to ensure that you can grind your beans to the perfect size for the perfect cup. The filter system ensures that parts of that grind do not end up in your cup spoiling your coffee experience.
There are many different filter systems on the market and which one you choose will either make or break your cup of coffee. You get disposable or permanent filters and each has their pros and cons. There are many different shapes and sizes of filters as well, and you should ensure that any filter you purchase is compatible with your coffee maker.
Capresso 565.05 Infinity Conical Burr Grinder, Stainless Steel
From its modern design made from stainless steel to its 16 different settings this coffee grinder says it should be our top pick. It offers four regular, four fine, four extra fine (especially for Turkish) and four coarse settings.
The burr grinder is renowned for being one of the most consistent grinders, ensuring even grinding which makes the grinds release their flavor simultaneously (different size grinds release their flavor at different intervals) adding to your flavor. Not only that, but the Infinity has slow grind, which reduces heat and friction. This, in turn, helps the Capresso 565.05 to retain the flavor of the coffee during the grind.
The Conical burr grinder is a breeze to clean and to help you out there, this Capresso is designed with a removable upper burr for easy access and has even included a cleaning brush in the box.
This is a coffee grinder that is designed for home use and not commercial use. If you do use it in your office or coffee shop you will void the warranty, something to keep in mind.
Baratza 586 Baratza Virtuoso Coffee Grinder
What a great coffee grinder for espresso. The Virtuoso has 40 different settings including a very fine grind to make the ultimate espresso.
It is powered by a DC motor that can handle constant use, however, it is meant for home use only. The hop holds 1 pound of beans and this makes the perfect pot without wasting. The coffee grinder has 40mm hardened steel conical burrs which grind the coffee evenly and consistently.
Reducing as much friction and heat is one of the most important things on a grinder, as heat burns the beans and takes away from the ultimate flavor of your coffee. The anti-static parts help to ensure that every last grind gets into the bin.
Not only is this one of the best espresso bean grinders it is also great for making French Press and drip coffee.
The Baratza is not only easy to use but also easy to clean. It is a little more expensive than some of the other coffee grinders on the market, but with all its features and stylish looks it is well worth the money.
Capresso 560.01 Infinity Burr Grinder
On a tight budget but want the best you can get? Look no further than the Capresso 560.01 Infinity Burr Grinder. It is one of those coffee grinders that gives you everything you need to be a great home barista and will not break the bank.
The Capresso 560.01 is the little brother of the 565.05 and, like that burr grinder, it can grind from very coarse to very fine – fine enough to make a decent Turkish coffee.
The hop is large enough to hold 8.5oz of beans and, although it will get your beans ground at a reasonable rate, it is designed to lessen friction and decrease heat when grinding and so will not burn your beans. It is an automatic coffee grinder that will give you the perfect grind time after time, ensuring a flavor filled cup of coffee for you and your friends and family.
The 560.01 has 16 different settings to help you make a variety of different coffees. You can choose from espresso to drip to the French press, depending on the coarseness of your grind.
It is a good looking coffee grinder made from ABS and is lighter than most other coffee grinders. It is easy to clean and easy to use, and most importantly easy on the pocket.
When it comes to choosing the right coffee grinder for yourself there are many aspects to take into consideration. The trick is to find a coffee grinder that gives you the most consistent grind as this is what ensures the best cup of coffee. It is really not that difficult to come up with A-grade cups of coffee at home anymore. And the truth is: the best tasting coffee comes from the best grind.