Coffee & Espresso Grinders
Pairing the right grinder to your machine is crucial for making a quality cup of coffee. If you use a manual, prosumer, or semi-automatic espresso machine, a quality grinder is an absolute necessity.
Rather than actually grinding, a blade-operated grinder cuts or chops coffee beans. Generally speaking, you’re not going to get a quality cup if you are using a blade grinder. However, burr grinders, which come in different sizes and shapes, will create the powdery fine grinds necessary for a quality cup of espresso. There is seemingly a burr grinder of every form and fashion with unique features to fit every budget.
What to Look For in a Grinder
More than the espresso machine itself, the grinder is the key to unlocking the true flavor and nuances in your roast. What will unlock these key ingredients is a uniform grind size without creating excess static and heat. The three key factors that determine the effectiveness of a grinder are its motor power, burr size, and burr shape. When it comes to motor power, generally the more power, the better!
- Burr Size: Burr size is a key factor in determining the overall effectiveness of a grinder. Generally speaking, the bigger the better! The larger the size of the burr, the more grinding area. A greater diameter of grinder means there will be fewer rotations of the burr set, leading to a faster and cooler dose. You do not want your grinder to heat the grounds, so fewer rotations to create a faster dose is certainly ideal. The more quickly the dose is made, the less chance that static electricity can build. Inevitably, static leads to clumping, uneven distribution, and channeling.
- Burr Shape: There are generally two types of burr shapes, those that are conical and those that are flat. Conical burr grinders have far more grinding surfaces than a flat burr with the same diameter. Conical burr grinders also rely on gravity and they can spin slower. So does that mean a conical burr grinder is better? Not necessarily. The problem is that conical grinders often create ultra-fine particles that can cause channeling in the puck. Flat burr grinders tend to create a more uniform grind, which makes a more refined cup of espresso. Need help deciding? Reach out to an Expert!
How Is an Espresso Grinder Special?
Coffee grinders are different from espresso grinders in the fact that they are not able to produce the powdery, fluffy grounds necessary for espresso. Espresso grinders can also be stepless, meaning that the barista can finely adjust the grind setting according to personal preference, or stepped, with predetermined grind settings.
Talk With an Expert
If you are in the market for an espresso grinder but don’t know which one is best for you, head on over to Curated and chat with one of the many Coffee & Espresso Experts who can get you squared away for all your needs. Your Expert will be able to ask all of the essential questions to fine-tune your espresso game, as well as answer all of the burning questions that you may have! The difference between Curated and any other coffee and espresso retailers is that when you are paired with an Expert, they will do everything they can to establish a relationship with you and make sure that everything is five stars or above!