Thousands of blind taste tests conducted over the years have confirmed what most of us already knew:
Fresh ground coffee is exponentially more enjoyable.
Brewing the best ground coffee means focusing heavily on freshness and quality. Of course, producing the best ground coffee means starting out with the highest quality beans available. After which, it’s a case of using a quality coffee grinder to produce fresh ground coffee in small batches, as and when required.
Increasingly, coffee connoisseurs are setting their sights on sophisticated electric coffee grinders. Many of which are perfectly capable of producing the best ground coffee you’ll ever make at home.
But this doesn’t necessarily mean that the traditional manual coffee grinder should be overlooked. In fact, hand-powered coffee grinders can actually be advantageous in a variety of ways. It’s not to say that one type of coffee grinder is ‘better’ than the other - it’s more a case of considering the plus points of both.
If fresh ground coffee is your thing, here are five good reasons not to overlook the appeal of a good manual coffee grinder:
First up, a good manual coffee grinder, like the excellent Comandante manual coffee grinder featured in the image above, actually gives you greater control over grind consistency than many electric grinders. This is because high quality manual grinders crush coffee beans with impressive consistency, whereas the spinning blades of cheap electric grinders ‘chop’ the beans into uneven and inconsistent fragments. Make no mistake about it - the consistency of the coffee grounds you use makes a big difference to the quality of the resulting cup. If you want to brew the best ground coffee at home, consistency is key.
Though not always the case, a traditional DIY coffee grinder will usually be much cheaper than a comparable electric grinder. These days, you can easily spend a lot of money on an electric grinder that does the same basic job as a much cheaper manual grinder. It’s also perfectly possible to overspend on a fashionable DIY grinder, but there is absolutely no need to do so. You could therefore argue that the cheapest possible way to produce consistently outstanding fresh ground coffee at home is to stick with a quality manual grinder.
Most coffee grinders are compact enough to be transported around with ease. The issue being that with an electric grinder, you need an appropriate power source to put it to use. Battery-powered grinders are available, but almost never do the job even remotely as well as a manual grinder.
Also worth factoring in is the inevitable noise that accompanies grinding coffee beans with an electric grinder. Far from the most discreet devices on the market, electric coffee grinders have a tendency to be somewhat noisy. By contrast, the sound of cracking and crushing coffee beans when using a manual grinder can be satisfying to say the least.
Last but not least, a good quality manual coffee grinder can be used to produce fresh ground coffee for a very long time. The simpler the device, the less likely it is to malfunction or break down on you entirely in the near future at least. Precisely why you’ll often see coffee grinders from more than 100 years ago still doing their thing today.
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* Nespresso ® is a registered trademark of Société des Produits Nestlé S.A., unrelated to Hayman ®.