Grinding your own coffee can be a pleasurable part of your daily ritual. Coffee grinders can be relatively inexpensive, are easy to use, and deliver the best cup of coffee possible.
But if you've never used one, the options can be confusing. Here's the top 5 espresso grinders, and what you need to know about them.
Why buy a coffee grinder?
The answer is obvious. Flavour. That delicious coffee taste comes from the oils contained within the beans, and the more evenly and consistently these oils are released equals a better tasting end result.
This means if you want the best cup of coffee, you want the best grinder. You're probably already spend a lot of money on your coffee beans, and your coffee maker. Why let your coffee down by not investing in the grinding process as well?
The differences between blade grinders and burr grinders
There are two main methods grinders use to process your coffee beans. Blades and Burrs.
Blade Grinders are significantly cheaper, but have a lot less variability in the end result. The beans also tend to have a less uniform size once they've been ground. But for a starter product, if you've never ground beans before, they're perfectly adequate.
Burr Grinders use two rotating plates that physically grind the beans between them. Burr grinders are highly adjustable, because you can change the difference between the burrs to get exact control
over your end result.
A professional quality coffee grinder, the Peak, by industry veterans Mahlkonig, is exceptionally made throughout.
Firstly, it’s gorgeous, and will look amazing sitting on any counter top, next to your coffee maker. The whole thing reeks of high build quality, from the high density plastic, with extra attention paid to the parts that are used most like the start buttons, to the premium steel burrs, which offer an exceptional grind experience and will last for ages without needing replacement.
It's also incredibly easy to use, with a wide variety of preset options and a built in scale for the perfect cup of coffee. If you want a touch of luxury with your cup of morning joe, the Mahlkonig Peak is the perfect choice.
Breville Smart Grinder Pro
A mid level burr grinding option, the Breville packs an awful lot of professional level options into its petite frame, while costing half as much as some other options.
For a start, the grinding experience is excellent, with quality stainless steel burrs, that can work at a solid selection of 60 grind settings. The grinding motors are high power, and are adjustable in grinding time increments as low as 0.2 seconds, getting you the precise finish you want every single time.
It also holds a solid amount of beans, 18 ounces to be precise, with the option to grind straight into a grind container, portafilter, filter basket or paper filter.
Honestly, as a general level grinder, this Breville model offers an awful lot for the price, and should seriously be considered if you're not going to spring the full price for a Mahlkoenig.
Cuisinart Supreme Grinder
An entry level burr grinder from industry staples Cuisinart, this grinder is an excellent choice for anyone who wants the precision and smoothness of a burr ground cup of coffee, without breaking the bank in the bargain.
Attractive enough, it's designed to be as simple to use as possible. The bean hopper slots into the top, holding up to 8 ounces of beans at a time. You can set it to grind from 4 to 16 cups of beans in one go, and once set you can forget it, as it will shut itself off when it's finished cycling.
The only real downside is the lack of precision in the burr settings, with a dial that simply runs from fine to coarse, but a little playing around will soon have you finding your preferred setting, and for this price it's hard to complain.
HandGround Precision Manual Grinder
If you like a little more direct control over your grinding, then this manual option might be just what you're searching for.
Developed by coffee enthusiasts, for coffee enthusiasts, and funded through Kickstarter, this grinder has already been delivered to thousands of people across the globe?
But how does it perform? Well, the burrs are high quality, with an absurd 0.004 inch tolerance of error in the build. When paired with the heavy duty handle it makes grinding beans a cinch. You can get the exact speed and pressure you want, and with the 15 built in settings you've got adequate options for almost everything including espresso, pour over and french press.
If you've never used a hand grinder before, they're incredibly simple, and it only takes seconds to get your beans. Even better, a grinder like this is ridiculously quiet, which can be a huge deal in the early mornings, especially if you have a family still in bed!
Quiseen One Touch Grinder
Simplicity at a reasonable price, if you're looking to grind your own beans but don't want to mess around with settings, this is an excellent starter point. It's also absolutely perfect if you love your coffee and you're looking for a transportable grinder that you can take away with you.
Honestly, it couldn't be simpler. There is only one setting, but the powerful steel blades are more than up to the job. It’s easy to hold in your hand, being slightly larger than your average thermos, and the integrated power cable can be tucked into the casing when you put it away.
It also serves double duty as a grinder for other foodstuffs, including nuts and spices.
For this price, it's hard to say no, even if it is very basic. You could even buy one as a second grinder for use when you're not using your main model.