Coffee Grinders - Buying Guide
Welcome again from me, Paul, owner of K Bean Coffee Machines.
Why is a quality coffee grinder so important? With manual coffee machines water is applied to a compressed coffee puck under pressure to extracts coffee oils. The coffee extraction speed is critical to getting a great shot and with a consistent Espresso Workflow the extraction speed is controlled by a single variable - coffee particle size. This means that a coffee grinder that can accurately control particle size is essential.
Why K Bean? Local Melbourne coffee grinder customers can visit my Showroom and interstate customers get Free Shipping, Online Guides, & Premium Support.
Coffee Grinder Types
There are 3 types of coffee grinder - blade, planar burr and conical burr. Blade coffee grinders chop beans, resulting of a blend of powder and chunks. These and are not suitable for use with manual coffee machines.
Planar and conical burr coffee grinders have two cutting burr surfaces with adjustable gaps. The gap between the burrs determines the grind particle size delivered and by adjusting the gap you can get the perfect grind size for your espresso extraction. Both planar and conical burr coffee grinders are excellent choices for home espresso.
Burr Coffee Grinder Categories
Appliances ($100-$200) Here you will find burr coffee grinders designed for appliance machines with double walled baskets to artificially slow espresso extraction. Most appliance grinders are not suitable for Italian coffee machines due to poor particle size control.
High End Domestic ($500-$1500) These are compact burr grinders, designed for home from the ground up. Being designed for home means that these are generally optimized for low mess grinding with minimal stale grind retention.
Compact Commercial ($500-$1000) Many compact commercial coffee grinders are a great choice for home as they are compact, solid and reliable. For home use you can expect 20+ years of fuss free hard work from any grinder in this category.
Large Commercial ($1000+) These are rarely a good choice for home. They are expensive, they take up a lot of bench space, and they generally have high grind retention of 5-8 grams of stale coffee.
Best Coffee Grinders for Home
To help you with choosing the best coffee grinder for your home I have selected a handful at a number of price points. Here’s my list of the very best coffee grinders:
Best coffee grinder under $500: Baratza Sette 270 - An innovative grinder that offers exceptional grind quality, low grind retention and tidy dosing. At $200 less than the Baratza Sette 270Wi this one is outstanding value.
Best coffee grinder under $1000: Eureka Mignon Silenzio - Commercial Italian grinder that is perfect for the home. Compact, powerful, accurate, fast and tidy, delivering fluffy, clump free grind with class-leading low grind retention …and very quiet.
Best coffee grinders under $1500: ECM S64 & Profitec Pro T64 - High end domestic grinders, designed for home from the ground up. They are made in the same factory, in Germany, and build quality is 2nd-to-none. Highlights include compact bodies, powerful motors, large burrs and clump free no mess grinding.
Choosing the Best Italian Coffee Grinder for Home
What is the best coffee grinder for your home? There is no best coffee grinder as "best" isn’t only about coffee grind quality and consistency. When choosing an Italian coffee grinder for your home there are 3 factors to consider.
Coffee Grinder Performance
Coffee particle size consistency
Coffee particle distribution - the “clumpiness”
Coffee particle size control - stepped v stepless
Coffee grind retention - grind retained between shots
Coffee Grinder Experience
Noise - will you wake your neighbours?
Mess - many grinders are mess free
Speed - ranges from 6 to 30 seconds for 22g
Aesthetics - it has to look good
Coffee Grinder Quality
Build quality & engineering
Coffee grinder performance is all about in-the-cup results. This isn’t the only factor to consider though. Who wants a high performing coffee grinder that’s noisy, messy, ugly and needs to be replaced every few years? Not me. This is why you also need to consider the coffee grinder experience and the coffee grinder quality.
Another factor to consider when choosing the best Italian coffee grinder for your home is your budget. Have no fear here as plenty of high quality Italian coffee grinders in the $500-$800 range. If you are reading this now you are on the right track as this means that you are taking some time to do a little research. That’s excellent.
Links to Other Guides
FAQs - Italian Coffee Grinders
How much should I spend on a coffee grinder?
Is there a mess free coffee grinder?
Can I use an appliance coffee grinder?
Do I need a stepless coffee grinder?
Do I need a timer on my Italian coffee grinder?
For answers to these FAQs click Here