For the best coffee flavor
Most true coffee connoisseurs consider grinding their own coffee beans to be the only way to make a quality cup of coffee. Coffee beans that come already ground have lost much of their flavor and do not produce a truly fresh taste.
The goal in grinding your own beans is to produce a consistent texture through which the water can pass quickly during the brewing cycle. The finer the coffee grounds, the more time it takes the water to pass through, which affects the taste of the coffee.
There are a few options for grinding your own coffee at home. You can purchase a manual coffee bean grinder or electric. What makes the most difference in the taste of the finished coffee, however, is the type of grinding action that the grinder uses:
- Blade grinding. Considered an inferior way of grinding coffee beans, blade grinding creates excess friction which may give the beans a burned flavor. Blade grinding also typically produces an inconsistent texture in the grounds which compromises the quality of the finished product. Blade grinders are, however, the most affordable home-grinding option and are easily cleaned and maintained.
- Flat wheel burr grinding. The coffee beans are spun between two disks, which results in a more uniform grind that blade grinding and produces less friction as well. The beans can get stuck in the hopper but can be moved along by stirring. The cleaning of the burr grinder is more complex than that of the blade grinder but the increased quality of the ground beans is worth a little extra work.
- Conical burr grinding. Conical grinders are considered the superior method of grinding coffee beans. The cone-shaped grinding disks create the most consistency in the grind and move the slowest of all the grinding methods, producing very little static electricity and low friction, which allows the beans to retain the maximum amount of their original flavor.
When deciding whether or not to invest in a coffee bean grinder, it is important to consider that no matter how well packed, already-ground beans can never achieve the level of freshness that you get from grinding your own at home. Capresso coffee grinders are a good brand of home coffee grinder that can be purchased in specialty shops and online. If you cannot afford to start with a burr coffee grinder, it’s better to at least have a blade grinder than to settle for already-ground beans.
For the ultimate in freshness and convenience, you may consider purchasing a coffee maker with a built-in bean grinder. The cost is higher than a traditional coffee maker, but you avoid buying the bean grinder separately, and you save some time, since one machine does both jobs.
As with any kitchen appliance purchase, do your research, comparison shop among brands and choose the machine which best meets your needs and your budget.