Roast2Order Coffee & Tea shop

Coffee Grinder – 101

A burr grinder is a fantastic way to grind coffee. You set the grind consistency, dump in your beans, turn it on, the beans pass through the burrs one time, and come out the other end in a consistent size and shape, ready for immersion.

Blade Chopper No-No’s

Blade choppers are a necessary tool in any gourmet kitchen. But, a blade chopper is NOT a coffee grinder!  It uses aerodynamic forces to cause a whirlpool effect, raising the pieces lying at the bottom of the chopper, causing them to fly up and come in contact with very fast-spinning blades over and over. Blade Grinder IllustrationThe operator has
complete control over how long to operate the chopping action but zero control over the resulting sized morsels it chops. You will end up with different-sized pieces, and each one will have a different surface area. Why is this bad? Every time your brew, your coffee will extract at different rates of speed, your taste experiences will vary, and often not be as good as they could if you ground your coffee beans instead of chopped. Due to this, a chopper should NEVER be used to “grind” coffee.

Why you want a Conical Burr Grinder

Now that we know a blade chopper isn’t a coffee grinder, how do you decide what coffee grinder to buy? We will focus on electric grinders for home use and why you want a Conical Burr Grinder.

A burr grinder is a fantastic way to grind coffee. You set the grind consistency, dump in your beans, turn it on, the beans pass through the burrs one time, and come out the other end in a consistent size and shape, ready for immersion.

Burr Grinder IllustrationBurr grinders come in two varieties. Conical Burr and Flat Burr, the latter is sometimes referred to as a “Disc Burr” grinder. You can spend thousands of dollars on a grinder. Quality conical burr grinders are available for around $100. We have seen some down in the $40-$60 range. I don’t recommend going that cheap.

I also don’t recommend a flat burr. The manufacturer doesn’t come right out with some grinders and tell you if theirs is a conical or flat burr. Sneaky!!! A flat burr grinder is more prone to clogging with coffee dust requiring more frequent cleanings. A cheap one will have a hard time making finely ground coffee. Besides, cheap ones may not be able to grind a lot of coffee at once or might overheat. Their blades can scorch your coffee while grinding and affect the flavor negatively.

Captresso Coffee Grinder IllustrationOur pick for a high-quality grinder that is reasonably priced (starting at just under $100) the Capresso Infinity Model 560.01 & 570.01 are hard to beat. Both share the same conical burr grinding mechanism. The 570 version is a little prettier on the outside with fancier knobs and comes in different colors. Our 560 has been sitting on our kitchen counter doing an admirable job for over ten years and, it looks great doing it!

Links below, Amazon “Best Choice,” Bed Bath & Beyond – must be the “beyond part,” LOL! (online currently has 20% off coupon),  and Sur La Table (currently has a $15 offer if you sign up for emails) grinders.

Remember, a “blade chopper” is NOT a grinder and should NOT be used for breaking down coffee beans into a useable format. It is not grinding. It is chopping the beans. Chopping = bad.

Pro Tip #1 – even though the storage hopper for beans and the catch container for grounds are BIG, measure and grind only the amount of coffee you plan to consume immediately. Remember, air and light are 2 of the three biggest enemies of coffee. Leave the rest of your beans in a sealed airtight container to preserve freshness.

Pro Tip #2 – never try to regrind ground coffee! It will clog up your grinder; you will then learn the inner workings of your grinder and the sharpness of the burrs as you clean it!

Amazon.com: Capresso Infinity Conical Burr Grinder, Black: Kitchen & Dining

Capresso® Infinity PLUS Conical Burr Grinder in Black | Bed Bath & Beyond (bedbathandbeyond.com)

Sur La Table: Capresso® Infinity PLUS Conical Burr Grinder in Black

Different methods of making coffee require a different size or consistency of coffee grounds. Set your grinder according to the desired maker and flavor strength of coffee.
Over extraction can occur when using too fine a coffee grind. It will taste sour and more bitter.
Our grinding process ranges from Coarse to Extra Fine with multiple steps in between.

Coarse

Electric Perculator
Pressed Coffee/French Press/Manual Steep (mild)

Medium Coarse

Pressed Coffee/French Press/Manual Steep
Auto drip (very mild)

Medium

Pressed Coffee/French Press (stronger)
Auto drip (mild)

Medium Fine

Auto drip

Fine

Auto drip (strong)
K-Cup (mild)
Espresso (mild)

Extra Fine

K-Cup
Turkish Coffee
India Coffee Filter