Investing in coffee grinders could be the best decision for your love for coffee!
I started making coffee at home with pre-ground coffee, ground at the roaster from where I purchased the coffee. This strategy was useful to me because when I acquired my Aeropress, my first home brewing apparatus, I did not purchase a grinder. Having my coffee ground for me was easier and cut down the time it took me to make a cup of coffee. After agreeing to participate in a Coffee cupping day, I recognised that I would need a grinder, which led me to acquire my Hario Mini Mill. I immediately noticed my coffee tasted better, and I have not once considered going back to pre-ground coffee.
Why should I grind coffee myself? Should I select an electric or hand grinder? What should I look for in a coffee grinder? Those are the questions I am going to answer in this guide. I will stay focused on grinding coffee for beginners because grinders may grow fairly difficult.
Why You Should Grind Coffee Yourself
The benefits of having your coffee grind are twofold: freshness (and consequently superior flavour) and the freedom to experiment with different grind settings.
You can’t consume coffee indefinitely. A few months after you buy a bag of roasted coffee, you’ll notice that some of the flavours that were present at the beginning have faded away. Ground coffee has a larger surface area than whole beans, it degrades more quickly. The coffee will begin to alter within 30 minutes of grinding. Even if you don’t taste the difference, freshly ground coffee tastes better than coffee that has been sitting on the counter for days. In other words, if you want to enjoy your amazing coffee to the fullest, getting a grinder is a wise decision.
Changing the grind setting is another benefit of owning a grinder. This is critical information because there is no uniform “proper” grind setting for every brewer or coffee. You’ll need a little wiggle room while grinding your beans if you want to get the most out of them. You have to rely on the roaster to grind the coffee precisely if you purchase pre-ground coffee. Most of the time, the dimensions are not ideal. I’ve had some excellent pre-ground coffees that have matched my needs, but you don’t get the chance to check how the coffee may brew at a different grind size when you buy pre-ground coffee.
Electric vs Hand Grinders
There are both electric and hand grinders to choose from while doing your study on grinders. Hand grinders can be a great starting point for those who want to grind their coffee because they are less expensive than electric grinders. Before buying an electric grinder, I used a Hario Mini Mill, a hand grinder that costs under 30 pounds. However, electric grinders are more expensive, but they have some advantages.
Let’s take a look at the amount of effort required for coffee grinding. Using an electric grinder, a simple switch or button press will start your coffee grinding. There is some work involved with hand grinders, on the other hand. There are many options for hand grinders, so this isn’t a significant concern for most people. If you’re performing a home cupping or grinding coffee for many cups, a hand grinder may not be the best option. You’ll need to put in a significant amount of effort, both physically and mentally.
In a single day, I’ve used my electric grinder to ground enough coffee to serve two people, as well as grind enough for myself. However, I’m going back to using a manual grinder for espresso because they’re far less expensive than equivalent electric grinders and can grind to an adequate size for espresso.
As a beginner, I’d suggest starting with a hand grinder to discover if the flavour difference between pre-processed and freshly ground coffee is important to you. Consider making the switch to a more expensive model if, as I am sure you will, you prefer freshly ground coffee even more. Before buying a hand grinder, I drank pre-ground coffee for several months. Months later, I purchased an electric grinder.
What To Look for in a Grinder
In the beginning, choosing a grinder for your kitchen may seem like a straightforward choice, but there are a few things to keep in mind. Consider these questions before purchasing a coffee grinder for your home:
- Exactly how much money am I willing to spend on a grinding machine? If you’re new to speciality coffee, I suggest starting with a little budget. While many of the more costly grinders are wonderful, a newbie can get by just fine with something far less expensive.
- Do you know whether or not it is a burr grinder? When it comes to making a better coffee, burr grinders far outweigh blade grinders. Burr grinders, in contrast to blade grinders, may grind to precise settings, resulting in a more consistent grind. Burr grinders are more expensive. More consistent grinds produce a better cup of java.
- Is my brewing method compatible with a grinder? Several types of grinders cover a wide range of brewing processes, including espresso, filter, French press, and Chemex.
- What’s the word on a grinder? For both electric and manual coffee grinders, there are many reviews available on the internet. Researching electric grinders before purchasing one, I discovered that the Encore was highly regarded for making filter coffee, which was my primary goal at the time. As a precaution, I watched various reviews and examined the grinder on Google before purchasing my hand espresso grinder.
There’s no need to worry if purchasing a coffee grinder is your first time. In the future, you can always spend more money on a more expensive or fancier grinding device. It’s ideal to invest in a new grinder once you’ve gained a better understanding of your demands, which may evolve as you become more dedicated to brewing your coffee at home.
If you know someone who brews speciality coffee, or if you buy your coffee from a roaster, ask them for recommendations. Roasters are generally open to answering inquiries about their products and the industry as a whole. When it comes to home coffee brewing, coffee roasters are a wonderful resource for assistance.
The Bottom Line
I’ve found that using an electric grinder has significantly sped up the process of filter coffee brewing. Because of this, I can grind coffee while doing other things, like preheating my coffee cup or setting up my coffee brewing equipment. In addition, I save time and effort by not having to grind by hand, which I don’t always feel like doing. I adore hand grinders. They are a fantastic starting place for beginner brewers, and there are many more professional ones available for those with more experience.
The Mini Mill is a great entry-level option for brewing speciality coffee for some time and don’t already have a grinder at home. At the beginning of my trip, making coffee at home and grinding my coffee bean was a cheap way to improve my brewing.
Remember that a great coffee would depend on your preference!