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Coffee Grinders: Models, Sources, Maintenance/Hygiene

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I've tried a few of the low end burr grinders and they don't seem to produce a more consistant grind than their blade cousins. I'd buy a blade grider and toss the grinds into a fine-mesh strainer to get rid of the coffee dust before putting it into the press - otherwise you'll end up with cloudy gritty coffee.

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i drink both coffee and tea-

i grind my coffee using krups-it is cheap and efficient

i brew coffee with melitta filter cone-

joanne

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I own the Kitchenaid model that you're thinking about buying, and it's GREAT for coffee and french press. It's very easy to get a very consistent grind with no powder.

I just wouldn't recommend it for espresso; by the time the grinds are fine enough for espresso, the beans are so overprocessed by the heat that you end up with burnt-tasting espresso.

Also, cleanup is very easy - just toss it into your dishwasher and you get a fragrance-free grinder. Great if you want to use it to grind spices and nuts too.

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For real expresso making, the feeling among cognoscenti is that one must acquire at minimum a grinder that costs around $250. There does not seem to be anything less expensive that can produce the required fineness and consistency of grind.


--

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I own the Kitchenaid model that you're thinking about buying, and it's GREAT for coffee and french press.  It's very easy to get a very consistent grind with no powder.

I just wouldn't recommend it for espresso; by the time the grinds are fine enough for espresso, the beans are so overprocessed by the heat that you end up with burnt-tasting espresso.

Also, cleanup is very easy - just toss it into your dishwasher and you get a fragrance-free grinder.  Great if you want to use it to grind spices and nuts too.

The consensus seems to be that the blade grinder is a much better idea at this price point and the KitchenAid sounds like a good choice. I wish that there were some more reviews of the Cuisinart blade grinder because it seems very similar to the KitchenAid but possibly a bit of an improvement. Maybe I'll see if there's a store where I can take a look at both of them.


Edited by hillbill (log)

Gustatory illiterati in an illuminati land.

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I use the KitchenAid blade grinder for my drip and french press coffee and it works well, at least when I am doing the grinding. I use my Rancilio Rocky doserless for espresso, since no blade grinder can consistently produce a very good espresso grind.


Regards,

Michael Lloyd

Mill Creek, Washington USA

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Besides drinking tea-

I also drink coffee-

I use a Krups blade grider

and brew coffee using

mellitta filer cone and paper

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Cheap blade grinders are IMO generally as good and typically better than cheap burr grinders. I say either get a cheap blade grinder and use a gold mesh cone for manual drip coffee rather than using a french press or bite the bulet and look around for a Solis Maestro - should be able to find one for about $90 - $100. The inconsistent particle size and fines produced from cheap grinders WILL result in sludge in your French Press coffee. If that's not a probelm just get the blade grinder - it should produce less heat and about the same consistency as a cheap burr grinder. The Maestro is the cheapest burr grinder you can buy that will produce a good enough grind to make decent espresso in an entry level espresso machine (i.e. about $200 - $300). The person who mentioned $250 as the entry point for a quality grinder capable of producing best results on better espresso machien is correct. That unit would typically be the Rancilio Rocky but careful shopper may find a unit like the Anfim or Cunill Tranquilo for about $200 or less. Noisier but also very good.

The gold cone filter wil llet many of the soluble flavor oils through that get trapped in paper filters. I happen to prefer filtered coffee to french press but most French Press drinkers have a strong preference for gld mesh filter coffee over paper filters. It's worth looking into.

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I've been using one of these Zassenhaus mills and am very happy with the results. It has a proper burr mechanism. While it is a little bit more work than an electric mill, the price is relatively inexpensive.

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Bob makes an excellent point. The manual Zassenhaus mills at $60 or $70 will beat the pants off any electric burr or blade grinder under $100. IMHO they will perform as well or better than the $150 Solis Maestro Plus but with the distinct advantage of havign much better durability on the burr assemblies and most likely a far longer working life.

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Bob makes an excellent point. The manual Zassenhaus mills at $60 or $70 will beat the pants off any electric burr or blade grinder under $100. IMHO they will perform as well or better than the $150 Solis Maestro Plus but with the distinct advantage of havign much better durability on the burr assemblies and most likely a far longer working life.

I would only add that the Zassenhaus mills are excellent for french press and drip (the original issue posed), but they can be an exercise in frustration for use in espresso. It can be difficult to adjust them to grind finely enough, and you will usually spend many minutes grinding away to get enough for a double shot.

Many people on Coffeegeek.com, however, use them for espresso while camping, traveling, or other situations in which their dedicated espresso grinder is not available.


Regards,

Michael Lloyd

Mill Creek, Washington USA

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We have used a succession of Braun burr grinders over the past 20 years and were veryhappy. When the last one failed we got a Solis Maestro. It is very impressive--and relatively quiet. The only complaint we have is that we miss the scale of numbers along the control switch

Joe McGuire

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Oops--the reply text got lost. We had been very happy with a succession of Braun burr grinders. We now have a Solis Maestro and think it is great. WIch is had a scale of numbers along the dial like the braun.

Joe McGuire

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Hi. Need to buy a new burr grinder. The DeLonghi we bought about a year ago only works now if you "shake" the grinder to move the beans down (not very good!). Appreciate any & all recommendations.

Thanks.


www.cookstour.netMy Blog

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it works well for a little while & then you literally have to shake it to move the beans down into the burr. the old Krups (non-burr) from years ago worked better.


www.cookstour.netMy Blog

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I'm very pleased with the performance of my Solis Maestro. Many people who are far more expert in coffee than I have commented that it's regarded as the minimum acceptable machine for serious coffee and espresso making.


Steven A. Shaw aka "Fat Guy"
Co-founder, Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, sshaw@egstaff.org
Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code
Director, New Media Studies, International Culinary Center (take my food-blogging course)

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A propos the previous two posts, I've been very happy with my Solis Maestro Plus. Here's a thread I started last month.


Gene Weingarten, writing in the Washington Post about online news stories and the accompanying readers' comments: "I basically like 'comments,' though they can seem a little jarring: spit-flecked rants that are appended to a product that at least tries for a measure of objectivity and dignity. It's as though when you order a sirloin steak, it comes with a side of maggots."

 

-The mosque is too far from home, so let's do this / Let's make a weeping child laugh.

    Nida Fazli, poet, 1938-2016 (translated, from the Urdu, by Anu Garg, wordsmith.org)

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I have this capresso model. Until I went with my grind and brew coffee machine, this one was a great grinder.


Marlene

cookskorner

Practice. Do it over. Get it right.

Mostly, I want people to be as happy eating my food as I am cooking it.

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The Solis grinders are a good option if your not planning to use it to make espresso.

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Yes... the Solis grinders, either the Maestro at about $100 or the Maestro Plus at about $150, are good grinders. They'll do a great job for press pot and drip coffee and are about the least expensive grinders that are suitable for getting good results with a decent espresso machine. A few folks report static problems with the grinds sticking to the hopper but I never had this experience. A more common report is that the burrs wear a bit too quickly for heavy users, i.e. those grinding a pound a week or more. If you're a press pot drinker the burr wear means a bit less consistency in the grind and a bit more of the powdery grounds resulting in extra sludge in the bottom of the brew.

The burr sets can be replaced but for heavy users interested in a good long term investment and willing to commit a bit of extra counter space, a higher end grinder is a very good investment. In the used or discounted new market, a Rancilio Rocky, Cunill Tranquilo or Anfim is a good choice. All are heavy duty, do a great job for coffee grinding and are an ideal partner for a higher end espresso machine. Expect to spend $175 - $275....

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I have a Salter mill mounted on my kitchen wall. It ground some damn fine coffee. They don't make them like that anymore.

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