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If you have a drill, rig up a wing nut or something to tighten the chuck around (or use a nut and socket) and grind the beans with it. Don't go real fast to avoid heating the beans though. I haven't bought a good electric grinder because none under $100 get consistently good reviews for making coarse grinds and not getting tons of static etc. I'm looking at buying a Hario Skerton, upgrading the lower bearing on it with the kit from orphan espresso and using my drill to do the work for me.
Currently, I use a cheap Mr. Coffee Blade grinder/chopper. Super inconsistent, but good enough for drip. Not so much for my french press. If you're dead set on electric, I would consider the Bodum Bistro for the glass catcher. For a cheaper option, the Cuisinart DBM-8 is well reviewed online but you get the plastic catcher/static issues.
First off, the quality of a grinder is mostly based on if the grinder has burrs or not. A cheap electric grinder uses blades, which grind the coffee without any real consistency. A bur grinder will produce a consistent and adjustable coffee grind.
The grind of the coffee is very important. A consistent grind will ensure the coffee extracts evenly. I use a hand grinder because it grinds the beans pretty darn consistently for a low price. Cons of a hand grinder are that it takes a while to grind your coffee. Down the road you could upgrade to an electric burr grinder. (Bodum makes a decently priced electric burr grinder).
My brew time for the chemex is 3 to 5 minutes based on how much coffee I am making. It also takes me a few minutes to grind my coffee as well. By now though, I try to grind my coffee as my water heats up in my kettle, so by the time the water is ready, my grinds are ready.
This is the one I switched to recently.
Pricier for sure but not insane and has literally none of those issues. Grinds much nicer too.
Only issue I've had so far is a few grounds escape the container so you have to give the machine a quick wipe where the container sits every few grinds.
My SO has been using a Virtuoso, which seems to be the better (or at least more expensive) version of the Encore. Any big differences there?
Also, is there a step up or slightly step down, like this Bodum or is the Encore just the 'best-in-class' sort of thing.
So, after a lot of research, I finally picked up a Gaggia Classic from my local shop to get started with home espresso. I'm using good, recently roasted, freshly-ground beans when brewing and believe I'm operating the machine well (filtered water, enough warm up time, etc).
However, it seems every shot I brew comes out not... disgusting, but just very under-powered (missing that boldness you'd expect in any good shot). Also, it is consistently only taking about 7-10 seconds to fill up two side-by-side 1oz shot glasses when it appears it should take closer to 20-30 seconds.
I've been using a Bodum Bistro electric burr grinder, which has served me well making Chemex cups for a while now. It seems to produce fairly consistently sized grinds at the finest setting, and seems to be fine enough for espresso as well. Am I correct in thinking that the grinder (despite my actual knowledge of why this is the case) just won't cut it for espresso? Are there any variables I could tinker with to make decent espresso with this same grinder, or should I just bite the bullet and go for an upgrade?
FWIW, it seems that most other people doing home espresso have much nicer grinders than me, so maybe it's just the answer that I don't want to hear ;)
I bought this grinder almost 4 years ago and have been using it at least once daily, and its held up great. Made a huge difference in coffee quality. That grinder plus an Aeropress ($25) has been my set up for 4 years, and has never failed me.
Obviously, I could go for more complicated with the hobby, but my setup is cheap, fast and really easy to get amazing coffee everyday.
I am a coffee loving girlfriend and my boyfriend got me a burr grinder, and can I say it is still the best gift I received in the last few years (and its competing against amazon gift cards). I've seen some as low as $46, mine is the $85. Its kind of high for a college budget though, but Ill drop a link anyway. [link]
As for middle ground grinders: The Bodum Bistro is a great burr grinder for pourover/drip coffee that can sometimes dip to a $50 price point. So maybe scan for that before going down the hand grinder road.
Don't get me wrong, hand grinders will give you the grind quality of a $200+ grinder for $30-$40 but they get tiresome and aren't ideal when you're in a hurry. Also I've gotten lazy.
>If you have a target nearby and you're very lucky the bodum bistro burr (important) grinder is on clearance at $50.
Is this what you're talking about? [link]
I have a Target near me so I'll have to check, do you think I could just call the store and ask?
Also if you don't mind me asking, what is the main difference between the Encore and the Bistro, they both use a conical burr (that's the term right?) but are quite different in price
It could be that the shop uses grinds different than your espresso machine. This is why grinders need to be dialed in. Each machine is different, each portafilter is different etc... That grinder is doing you no favors. I had it for months and I tried everything just to make good pour over coffee. Grinds were from turkish to french press on a medium fine setting. I grabbed an encore and now I am more than happy. There are usually old espresso grinders on craigslist for cheap as well. I think the start of your problem is with the coffee grind.
Sometimes you can find these cheap as well
I just tried it at a friends house this past weekend and it delivered pretty well for a budget grinder.
If you are liking your bodum bistro, then upgrading to the conical burr version would be a nice upgrade [link]. I just ordered one tonight, so I can't give first hand experience, but I think it looks really solid.
Hey, thanks for the recommendation - I do ship worldwide, though the US postal service just doubled their base rates for international so shipping is gonna run $13.50ish on top of the bearing...
From what I've heard, the mini mill is better than the Skerton out of the box.
Now, if you CAN spring for electric, I'd recommend the Bodum Bistro as a solid, cheap entry-level burr grinder. Don't pay the current Amazon price for it though, they're often available for as low as $75 and the price fluctuates very often. I have one that I keep at my mom's house for when I'm back at home and it does a great job for pourover.
Whats your budget? THe best grinders dont usually come attatched to brewers so your best bet would be to buy one seperet. I recommend this one. Its a burr grinder with many settings, I have had mine for 5 years and still works great. As for a drip machine, I would go bona vita. It brews quick and has a excellent heating element. It just doesnt have a timer but like I said Just hit the switch and it will brew in under 2 min.
Yeah, so I'm gathering. Qua "noob," I frankly think I'm going to skip the hand grinder and deal with the minor, hopefully lesser mess of a new electric burr grinder. This one looks pretty good. Any other thoughts on a not-crazy-expensive electric burr grinder? Thanks!
I use the Bodum Bistro grinder. It makes a nice coarse grind. The biggest downside is that it has a 20sec maximum operation time, where you are then supposed to let the motor rest for 5 minutes before using again. But 20 seconds will grind you at least 60g of coffee on the french press setting.
I typical use water 30sec off the boil, around 200deg F.
Typically 4 minutes. If you're not timing it, then you will end up with inconsistent results.
I use 70g/L, but really, steep time, water temp, and coffee dosing are all up for experimentation!
I completely agree with fleflahfloh's suggestions. There are a zillion choices, but I personally would initially stick to trying Americanos at your local cafes (Americano = espresso with hot water added). Then, I'd get a French Press or an Aeropress and start playing around with brew time, grind size, etc. A decent grinder is a must, but it doesn't have to be really expensive (I suggest a Bodum Bistro, at around $70-$80). Have fun!
I just now ordered the Bodum Bistro for $91 on Amazon, new.
Sidebar equipment list seems to like it more than the Encore
Bodum Bistro Electric Burr Coffee Grinder, Black [link]
This is easily the best guide I've come across and helped me the most to learn about all the various methods.
Since you're going to be a beginner, I would suggested the Kalita Wave. Don't get me wrong it's not just for beginners, (I've been a home enthusiast for about 8 years now) and I've been using it for the past few years almost exclusively. It's my recommendation because I think it's got the safest design in terms of not messing up due to bad technique. I've used the v60 and Chemex too and I can't really get into the v60, I'm not too big a fan of its design. The Chemex is probably the best bet if you plan to brew more than 1-2 cups at a time however.
Of course you have non-pourover methods like French Press and aeropress but I don't mess with those. :)
As for equipment, head on over to /r/coffee as suggested below, but my advice is since you're brand new don't worry about getting carried away. This was my first grinder and while I would consider it trash today by my standards, it served me well for several years. I'm not recommending that model, I'm sure the times are changing and there are more alternatives, but most "burr grinders" should suit you well. Feel free to reach out if you have any specific questions, I'm happy to help.
I'd agree. I'd also say that this is the cheapest grinder worth its beans -
A decent grinder and fresh beans make a bigger difference than brewing method. As long as you don't screw up whatever method you pick.
Here’s a good grinder for pour over:
Bodum Bistro Grinder
I love the Bodum Bistro burr grinder, I use it mainly for French Press coffee. [link]
This is my current V60 setup:
Basic, but it's all I need!
Honest opinion, the most important thing to good coffee is freshly roasted and freshly ground beans.
Get a good grinder and a nice pack of fresh beans (not from a grocery store) find a local coffee shop if you can or order online. Even in a cheap coffee maker this will make a huge difference.
With that in mind here are my recommendations:
60-100$ The bodum bistro burr grinder, more budget friendly than the baratza encore.
27.96$ Mokapot Great if you want a more espresso type coffee. I'd recommend this since your SO drinks Mochas.
2.79$ Milk frother great for getting a nice foamy "cappuccino"
My burr grinder cost me a lot more than the french press.
One nice thing about Denver and coffee. Water boils at a lower temperature. Just a few degrees above the maximum range for good coffee. So it's easy. Bring it to a boil, wait a moment for it to stop, and you're ready to pour. Those top few degrees drop really quickly. Especially if you have some good distance between the kettle and the carafe, which also helps mix it well. I grind my beans fresh every morning. The grinder is dialed in for size so I just smack a button.
I get my beans fresh from the roaster every two weeks. Coffee at the grocery store can already be a week or two old. It's just a failure of the freshness front. If my coffee doesn't give me good bloom, I just toss the rest of the beans. I think fresh beans trump any method of making coffee. I'd get a decent burr grinder before any fancy coffee maker.
I also drink it black.
bodum burr grinder?
Or Bodum blade grinder?
If it's the blade grinder that's pretty standard.
No I mean, this link
I see this one on Amazon, the Bodum, for 117 dollars. Is it a decent grinder?
Original Comment by cmattei
>I use either [Caveman Coffee](Cavemancoffeeco.com) or Death Wish If I were you I'd absolutely invest in a burr grinder, the one I use is a little expensive but absolutely worth it.
How does the coffee taste? I find aeropress to be very forgiving actually.
Anyway, I've been rocking this grinder for about 2 years: [link]
Also, would this do the job for grinding?
I have been using this one for 4 years without any problems
It sounds like the Bodum Bistro might fit your bill. Amazon's got it for ~$90 atm.
the bodum bistro is $100. i use it to make espresso. its not sturdy like the $350 rocky but you get what you pay for.
Not sure why he has it listed as $180 bucks because it is almost always around $100 on amazon [link]
with black being $109 and colors beeing $99
I'm considering purchasing this guy:
Although the Capresso and Baratza are also very decent options from what I've researched.
I'm seriously considering buying this one. Can you think of any reason I shouldn't?
I just picked up this one, and I love it: [link]
Great price and great design.
Also, these are on sale right now: [link]
Bodum Bistro Electric Burr Coffee Grinder
My current grinder is a Bodum Bistro.
can't beat it for the price i think.
I have had mine for years & it's amazing.