Which coffee grinder to use?

Achieving a great result in the preparation of your espresso or filtered coffee will depend on a correct and uniform granulometry

 

 

Most of us start by buying traditional coffee, then we go to gourmet coffee, followed by specialty coffee. All of them already ground! Until a time comes that to continue the evolution of knowledge we realize that it is necessary to grind our coffee at the time of preparation.

This is undoubtedly a big leap in quality. Keeping the coffee bean entire until it is prepared ensures that all substances that create the fantastic aroma and flavor of coffee are preserved for longer. This is the best way to maintain and enjoy all the quality of the beans you have invested.

The principle is this: imagine that you are going to cook potatoes. If you cut large pieces and other small pieces and put everything in the same pan, in 30 minutes of cooking you will notice that the small pieces are so soft that they have become puree and that the large pieces are still kind of hard. For this reason, the cooks recommend cutting everything to the same size, so that the parts cook as much, at the same time.

This happens with coffee powder as well. Inlet grinders create a non-uniform grind, causing the coffee bean to be ground into larger and smaller pieces.

An advanced grinder makes grinding more homogeneous. The powder is almost the same size after grinding and this makes the extraction balanced.

However, the truth is that not every grinder has the power to provide uniform grinding of the grains and fine adjustment between each grinding level. Therefore, the choice of the grinder is one of the most important for the preparation of your coffee, whether in the Aram coffee maker, in any other espresso coffee maker or in filtered coffee methods. 

 

Filtered coffee, French press and Aeropress

 

Aram’s filtered coffee method, Arame, was designed to take the V60 method to other levels

 

Methods such as filtered coffee, the French Press or Aeropress require medium to coarse grinding. But, because it has a longer contact time between water and coffee powder (from 2 to 4 minutes), they allow a greater variable with the grinding, since the grinding level can be easily circumvented by the contact time between them .

Most basic grinders can work well in these cases, like Hario, Bialetti, Porlex and even propeller grinders – similar to a blender. It is not ideal, but it is a good start.

 

Espresso Coffee

 

 

For espresso, only with the correct grind you will be able to create pressure and thus be able to have a real espresso. Within the grinding for espresso there are several levels suitable for each bean, coffee maker and for each quantity of coffee used (see our grinding guide for espresso here).

As the time for preparing an espresso is very short, between 25 and 40 seconds, the contact time of the coffee powder with the water is very short and the fine grinding is responsible for the pressure inside the coffee makers. Therefore, advanced grinders are more suitable for this type of preparation. They grind evenly and have a more sensitive setting, in addition to features that are ideal for espresso.

If you ask to grind at a cafe, you may need to ask to grind a little bit finer than their standard. But, calm down! I know it looks complicated, but it isn’t. It takes 2 to 3 espressos for you to get the grind right, either at home or by buying ground coffee from a cafe.

It is possible to make a good espresso using basic manual grinders, however, you get better results of homogeneity and fine adjustment using advanced grinders, such as Bravo, Timemore, Kinu, Comandante, Breville and Baratza.

 

Coffee already ground from the market or cafeteria

 

 

As we said earlier, the best way to have the ideal coffee is to preserve the substances in the coffee and keep it in beans until the time of preparation. We know that this is not always possible, but that is no reason for you to run out of coffee, right? If you are buying ground coffee from the market, keep an eye on its date of manufacture. The shorter the date, the fresher it will be. Try to opt for 100% Arabica coffees or special micro batches.

 

Important detail: traditional coffee from the market already ground has grinding for filtered methods, it is not possible to make espresso with them. Even the packages that come with espresso grind are not indicated.

 

If you are going to buy specialty coffee at your favorite cafe, choose a coffee as fresh as possible and suitable for the method you are using. If you are ordering ground coffee, order a small amount to test on your Aram coffee maker or other conventional coffee makers. Take the test and if you find that the grind met the result you were looking for, order more coffee with that same grind.

In short, there is not much secret! It is only with the continuous use and application of different recipes that you can find your best results. It is trial, error and success!

You can learn a lot more about how to have an amazing result on your Aram by carefully reading our Preparation Guide

 

Now, connect to the grinders we recommend:

 

  • Input grinders: Manual Hario, Bialetti and similar

They are great for those just starting out and don’t want to invest a lot of money. With them you can grind for espresso and filtered coffees, but it will not be a uniform high quality grind, in addition the setting is not fine (which can be more boring to adjust the grind for espresso). For espresso, the time for grinding the coffee is very high, from 2 to 3 minutes for 20gr of coffee beans.

 

  • Electric intermediate grinders: Express Breville and Baratza

For those who like agility and want to invest more. These brands make good grinders, with very good grind. You can also grind for espresso and filter with them, good uniformity, fine adjustment, and short times of around 30 seconds, 20gr espresso coffee beans. 

 

  • Advanced manual grinders: Bravo Mini, Kinu, Comandante, Helor, Timemore, 1zpresso and similar

These grinders are the darlings of special coffee lovers. The quality is superior to the electric grinders mentioned above, however, the investment cost may be higher. You can also grind for espresso and filtrates with them and the grinding is excellent and of great uniformity, and the fit is fine. The manual grinding time is around 1 minute for 20gr of coffee beans in espresso granulometry.

 

For espresso coffee we do not recommend propeller grinders because they are not able to grind so fine and uniform for the method. Some that we do not recommend for espresso are:

  • Cuisinart DCG20 / DBM8 Electric Grinders;
  • Bialetti Eletricity;
  • Hamilton Beach;
  • Cadence Di grano MDR302 and similar. 

For filtered coffee, these can “break the branch”, being a good cost x benefit for those just starting out.

 



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