Having a coffee grinder is essential to brew a good coffee at home. Of course the coffee must be roasted within a month or so, that’s the very basic rule. No matter how good you are at brewing or good the grinder is, it’s pointless if the coffee itself is old.
3 Key Factors
1. Don’t buy old coffee
2. Even grind
3. Little to no fines
I personally recommend hand mill at home, rather than electric grinders. The whole manual activity of grinding to brewing gives you much more appreciation to the coffee. If the price isn’t the issue, you can go for some nice electric grinder which some reliable coffee geeks say some good things about. Either way, freshly grinding coffee is important.(Photo Credit: Wayne Wilkinson)
Why Do You Need a Grinder?
It’s normally said that whole coffee bean lasts for a month and ground coffee lasts only for two weeks. I personally experience the ground coffee depreciates much faster than whole bean; ground coffee looses its delicate fragrance in a day or so(stored at room temperature in a zipped bag).
It’s simply because of the surface area. The surface area of ground coffee is much larger than the one of the whole bean, which means its oxidation progresses much faster. Some say ground coffee’s oxidation proceeds thirty times faster. That’s the reason having a grinder is important.
Brewing and Grinding
How evenly a grinder can grind beans is important. If resulted ground is uneven, some coffee particles are under extracted and some are over extracted. The resulting cup lacks the clarity. Blade grinders must not be gotten from this perspective. Another thing that you can measure the grinder’s capability is the amount of fines that are generated through the grinding process. The fines cause over extraction by releasing chlorogenic acid which could be acidity at lower amount in a cup but at higher amount, it turns to astringency. Some fines are unavoidable, but you can evaluate grinders by the amount of fines generated. Using tea strainer is useful to remove fines. (Photo credit: liz west)
My personal recommendation is Hario Skerton(KYOCERA CM-50CF). It features Kyocera made sturdy ceramic burr which is very easy to take care of. The factory setting of this grinder alone isn’t much more than that. The reason I recommend Hario Skerton is this upgrade kit. It stabilizes burr especially for courser grind. The problem with usual top-crank mill is it’s unstability, but since Orphane Espresso makes this stabilizer, Hario Skerton stands out.