How To Buy A Coffee Grinder – Best Coffee Grinders

by Daniel Harrington on March 12, 2011

Choosing the Best Grinder for Gourmet Coffee Brewing

You’ve acquired premium coffee beans from far across the world, say a fine Kenya AA Coffee – known as the “world’s brightest coffee” for its  pleasant acidity, full body and strong, rich taste with a an aroma fragrant with floral tones and a winey finish with citrus and berry overtones- or perhaps a fragrant and spicy, wet processed Ethiopian Yirgacheffe Coffee with a sweet flavor and a complexity of floral notes in the aroma, maybe a hint of toasted coconut a vibrant aftertaste.

How To Buy A Coffee Grinder

Do you really want to let these fine coffee beans travel so far and processed and handled with such care, only to be desecrated by a cheap coffee grinder? Do you? Of course you don’t! That’s why you are reading this article to understand the importance of a proper coffee grinder in preparing and brewing premium gourmet coffee.

Burr Coffee Grinder vs. Blade Coffee Grinder

Your two main choices when it comes to coffee grinders are blade coffee grinders and burr coffee grinders.

The problem with a blade coffee grinder is that it generates to much heat and can essentially re-roast the coffee beans harming the fine nuanced flavors and aromas. Blade grinders utilize metal blades that work in a propeller-like fashion spinning at speeds from twenty to thirty thousand revolutions per minute.

The “propellers” of a blade grinder serve to smash or chop up the coffee beans producing grind sizes from coarse to fine which is determined by the length of time you keep the grinder on.

The problem with blade grinders, in addition to the excess heat, is that they create an uneven grind size (e.g., some larger and some smaller and larger particles) which creates inconsistent brewing. Blades also have the unfortunate quality of creating a fine coffee dust which can clog espresso machine and French Press sieves.

How To Buy A Coffee Grinder – Best Coffee Grinders continued:

The Superiority of the Burr Coffee Grinder

The burr coffee grinder is the best for gourmet coffee lovers brewing espresso or brewing gourmet coffee. This type of grinder utilizes a “burr” to crush up the coffee beans between a rotating grinding wheel (e.g., shredding disk; burr) and a stationary disk.

The burrs can be adjusted depending upon the grind size desired, and the result is that the beans are broken down into consistently sized particles.

Choosing the Best Burr Coffee Grinder

When it comes to burr grinders you have two main choices: the conical burr grinder and the wheel burr grinder. The conical burr grinder is typically more expensive and performs its job with a slower rotation speed, while the wheel burr grinder has a higher speed of rotation.

A conical burr grinder operates at about 500 rpm while a disk-type burr grinder (wheel burr grinder) typically operates at about ten to twenty thousand rpm (which has the result of causing a higher heat in the coffee).

Advantages of Burr Coffee Grinders

The advantage of a conical burr grinder is that the design of the steel burrs allows a greater gear reduction which slows the grinding speed imparting less heat to the coffee and producing the best consistency of all the types of grinders, which in turn allows the coffee’s finest flavors and aromas to shine through.

The Conclusion – Coffee Connoisseurs Love Conical Coffee Grinders

A conical burr grinder is also quieter and doesn’t create as much of a mess. Another advantage of a conical burr grinder is that it is less likely to get clogged by very oily coffees or flavored coffees. The only disadvantage is that it is a bit more expensive, but it’s worth it!

Best Coffee Grinders

So there you have it! Next time you open that freshly-roasted batch of fine  Tanzania Peaberry Coffee grown on Mt. Kilimanjaro and want to experience the fullness of its body and fruit-toned acidity with hints of black currant that soften to chocolate then merge into a sweet and lingering finish, or if you want to truly savor your Java Arabica Coffee, wet processed Arabica coffee from the Indonesian island of Java grown at 1,400 meters on the Ijen volcano complex, then take the time to grind it properly! You will be thankful you did, as it can make all of the difference in providing an aromatic and flavorful cup of coffee!

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