Trying to find a good quality coffee grinder should not be as hard as it is. I’ve looked around locally and cannot seem to find any that I would be happy with. For my uses I definitely don’t need a huge café style grinder taking up room but I do have some preferences that cannot be ignored.
Not Just For Espresso
A good grinder, coupled with freshly roasted coffee beans, is capable of producing a glorious cup of coffee. These two elements are the most important thing in getting a good cup no matter what your brew method is. I don’t think many American’s have truly had a good cup other than those who are participating in the “third wave” renaissance of brewing. If you think Starbucks is where it is at then this may hold true for you as well.
No Blades Please
The only models that I could find at Macy’s and several other department stores were blade type grinders. These leave your coffee beans in various sized chunks and are definitely not something I want to use.
Burrs Are Better
A true coffee grinder – even one that is designed for home use – should have burrs rather than blades. Instead of dicing up the beans in irregular chunks, these type of grinders actually “grind.” They smash the beans between a flat or conical (cone shaped) metal or ceramic burr with cutting teeth and another piece of metal and pulverize the beans into consistent grinds. Larger the burrs inside of the grinder generally mean more consistency in regards to the coffee ground – although consistency is not really that important unless grinding for espresso.
Although I know from experience that a bigger grinder is necessary for espresso brewing, I don’t yet have an espresso machine – again I’m still researching home models. In Italy many people still use the old style Mokka Pots and just hit an espresso bar after lunch during the work week (which is a little more relaxed than that of the US, I’ve learned). However, I may eventually get an espresso machine and thus I’m undecided on which grinder I want to get. I’m still researching and found this guide to coffee grinders extremely helpful.