There are two basic types of coffee grinders; blade and burr coffee grinders. Most purists say you should not even think about blade coffee grinders since they do not grind the coffee beans evenly to a decent consistent particle size, making an unpredictable and sometimes uneven brew. Some would argue that it is a better way to prepare your coffee because the consistency of the brewed coffee is more consistent with blade coffee grinders than it is with burr coffee grinders. But which one do you use? Here are some tips from the experts to help you decide.
Blade coffee grinders extract the coffee using a paper-thin metal blade, or through a fine mesh wire mesh. The coffee particles are ground to fine powder, then pressed together using a spout. These type of grinders are very good at grinding and producing really well-tasting coffee. The downside to these is that sometimes the coffee can be too weak or bitter tasting, due to insufficient extraction of the flavorful oils from the ground coffee. Blade coffee grinders also tend to produce a lot of smoke and carbon build up, although some of this can be eliminated by ensuring that the coffee is properly grounded.
Burr coffee grinders work by using a metal plate or blade to grind the coffee. The coffee grains are crushed into fine particles, then passed through a burr grinder to extract the flavor. Some people use burr grinder units that contain groups electric spice injectors – these can add a nice smokey flavor to the coffee. While some people debate the taste of groups electric spice injectors, many swear by their ability to produce consistent and richly flavored coffee.
Another type of coffee maker, which many people would think of first, is an espresso maker. Espresso coffee makers use heated water that is poured over coffee grounds in a container, creating a pressure-brewed coffee. While there are a variety of different kinds of espresso makers, most of them operate on the same basic principle. The coffee is placed into the middle chamber, where it sits under a faucet that releases pressure through the heat of the water. When the pressure reaches the correct point, the steam valve opens and the steam begins to expand, forcing its way out through the open top of the coffee maker.
Moka-grinder coffee makers, like the burr model, use small sized ceramic discs to release coffee. Because of the discs, there is less waste and an enhanced flavor. While coffee makers made from metal or steel plates may be preferred for environmental or financial reasons, the moka-grinder is the best solution when creating a coffee that truly tastes good. With this type of coffee maker, you can control the size of the particles that are ground. The smaller the grounds, the more flavors you can extract from the coffee. Different flavors can be extracted by varying the grind size as well, so experimenting with different flavors can be a fun and lucrative part of enjoying coffee.
Another common coffee grinder used by many is the bean to cup burr coffee grinder. As the name would imply, beans are put into a burr grinder that makes “cup” coffee. The coffee grinds are then collected into the basket of coffee grinders and the process is repeated.
High speed grinders are generally preferred because of their ability to quickly grind and brew coffee. For this reason, they are the most common preference amongst professional coffee makers. Typically high speed grinders are inexpensive compared to other types of coffee grinders. However, they do not generally produce the highest quality cup of coffee. Some coffee enthusiasts prefer the taste produced by high speed burr coffee makers because of the lack of flavor accents from the blade of the machine.
A third type is the blade grinder, which is the opposite of the burr grinder. Blade grinders can create finer particles and beans for coffee that has a higher acidity level. Typically, they are not preferred for single origin coffees and tend to leave a weaker cup of coffee than some of the blade grinders. Blade grinders can also generate a small amount of surface dust. The advantage of a blade grinder is that it tends to be less expensive than most coffee grinder models, although they also tend to generate a lesser amount of specialty coffee.