Whole Bean vs Ground Coffee – whole bean is denser, so it stays fresher, but both need special handling to keep them fresh. Much like Baking Soda, coffee beans are a deodorizer, and they absorb the other odors around them. This is one reason your beans need to be OUT of your refrigerator or freezer and be kept sealed before brewing. Think about how many different foods, smells, etc.; there are inside your fridge!
Once roasted, all coffee beans need to be stored airtight with a one-way vent to release natural gases roasted coffee gives off or, better, sealed in a container with all air removed, such as with an Airscape® container (by Planetary Design).
Whole Bean vs Ground Coffee – Ground coffee is far more exposed to the air around it. It is crucial to keep ground coffee sealed, or, better yet, don’t grind it until your ready to use it! That is where owning your own grinder comes into play if you want to enjoy a great-tasting cup of coffee. By far, the BEST way to enjoy our coffee is to buy freshly roasted whole bean coffee, keep it stored airtight, and then grind only what you will consume immediately using a conical or flat burr grinder. NEVER use a blade chopper.
Conical or flat burr grinders are a little more expensive than blade choppers. But, a burr grinder will always do an amazingly better job at consistently grinding your coffee, which is what you need to produce a consistently great-tasting cup of coffee! You set the burr to the consistency you want, and rather than chop at the bean, it crushes it between to pieces of steel to the exact measurements you set the grinder at, from extra fine to coarse, the resulting ground coffee falls through to the collection cup once it meets the right size. If you had a strong enough magnifying glass, you’d see all your pieces are uniformly made.
We aren’t talking about a HUGE expense to buy a burr grinder, and they should last! I bought my Capresso Conical Burr Grinder 20 years ago for around $40. We use it daily, sometimes multiple times per day…although it wasn’t built for it, I have ground pounds of coffee at once with it for guests to take home samples. I don’t go to any great measures to clean or maintain it, other than tap/shake it out to clean. Not once have I replaced or sharpened the burrs. Maybe I should! Just as an FYI – our preference is a Conical Burr grinder. Flat Burr is more popular these days, but they can be real finicky, needing extensive cleaning regularly. If you don’t keep them clean, they jam up and stop working!
Like I said, my Conical Burr grinder, simple, simple, simple!
On the other hand, a “blade chopper” breaks down the pieces unevenly, eventually turning it into a fine powder if you don’t release the button! It relies on YOU, the operator, to know the right moment when to stop chopping, and no matter how hard you try, some pieces will end up smaller and some bigger, and not at all evenly sized. That is bad!
Without over-confusing things, here is the issue facing the “perfect cup of coffee”…the coffee grounds need to all consistently be the right size for the hot water to properly extract the correct coffee flavor in whatever amount of time the water is in contact with the grounds. If some grounds are too big, there won’t be enough extraction during the brewing process, and the flavors will be weak. When the pieces are too small, it will over-extract, and the coffee will be strong and bitter. Other things can cause misformed flavors, such as the water temperature, the QUALITY of the water, and the actual brewing process itself…but let’s leave it at this for now! We have another section on the best extraction processes (coffee makers).
The size of the ground needed depends on the type of extraction process (coffee maker), such as a French Press, Auto drip, Perculator’ Keurig machine, or just a simple pour-over filter.
We HIGHLY recommend, to enjoy the best cup of coffee you can, buy the very BEST and freshest beans you can, and make the investment when you can in a Conical Burr Grinder. You will thank us when you do!
Last note, even if you are buying our coffee already ground, it will still taste better than store-bought coffee if you properly store it!
Remember, the BEST way to store coffee is in an Airscape® container by Planetary Design, ideally in a whole bean state.
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.
Pressed Coffee/French Press/Manual Steep
Pressed Coffee/French Press (stronger)
Auto drip (strong)