Grinders

  • Things to Look For When Shopping For Grinders

    Timers, dosing, auto-stop, catch bins, burr types, oh my! There’s so many features and specs on brew grinders despite their relatively simple purpose. But what features really matter? We’re here to help with that so that you can make a more informed decision when it comes to purchasing your next coffee grinder! We should note, today we’re talking about slow brew grinders for drip, pour over, press, etc. We’ll talk more about espresso grinders in a later post.

    Internals

    The inside of your brew grinder doesn’t need to be too complex. You’ll want your grinder to have burrs, if that wasn’t obvious, but the kind isn’t incredibly important for brew grinding. Conical burrs can offer a better grind path with less retention for coarse grinding, and are generally what you’ll find in most brew grinders anyway. That said, flat burrs are just fine as well. Material is also not particularly important for a home brew grinder. Burrs in a home grinder should last over a decade regardless of material.

    One thing to watch out for is a grinder designed for brew grinding specifically. These grinders will often have a grind path that works better for the grind levels used in slow brewing rather than a finer espresso grind. This, however, will also have a very minor impact on the overall performance of the grinder.

    External

    The first thing you might think about with the outside of the grinder is case material. While a solid, metal case is certainly nice to have, plastic casing is quite standard and absolutely not a marker of a cheap grinder. Instead, a better focus is on the control interfaces for the grinder, and on how that will affect your workflow. Does the grinder feature a timer? Digital display? Where’s the on/off switch? How is the grind adjusted? All of these things will affect how you use the grinder, but there’s not necessarily a right answer to what is “best.”

    Instead, you’ll want to think about how these things will fit into the way you brew. Do you dose only the beans you need? If so, you could set a timer to grind it all while you prep your filters. Or maybe you grind just enough for a single cup so a manual push button wouldn’t be so bad. Keep in mind that timers almost never allow for a truly consistent volume for brew grinding due to the coarser grind and larger volumes compared to espresso. This is especially true when working with a dial timer that you can’t leave in a precise spot. Weight based grinders can also be quick finicky, but if you can get them dialed in they can be a boon for your morning grinding prep.

    Stepped or stepless grind adjust also matters, with a stepless adjust giving you a lot of precision to dial in a pour over grind, or a stepped grinder allowing you to easily adjust your settings for different brew methods. Which one works best is down to your preferences!

    The Biggest Factor

    Bigger than all of the feature factors is the question of performance. Does the grinder you’ve picked out offer consistent, quality grinds. This is hard to measure based on features, so if you can find video of the grinder and its grinds, that’s the best way to understand this. 

    If this performance is in place, and the grinder has features that you feel will benefit your workflow, you may have found the perfect one for you!

     

  • Video Roundup: 2/5/2021

    Hey Coffee Fans,

    We're back with another Video Roundup! We've got just a couple for you today, let's jump in!

    First we have a superauto vs. semi-auto tasteoff with Areil!

    And next up we have a sneak peek of the very excited Eureka Helios:

    That's it for this truncated Video Roundup, check out some more next week!

  • ICYMI: New Gear!

    It’s 2021 and in the rush of the holidays we launched some new gear! We wanted to stop and make sure you’ve got the low-down on all of this new equipment, so let’s take a look!

    Solis Scala

    Solis isn’t an all new brand, but we relaunched the Scala and Barista gear late last year. The Barista Perfetta got a lot of attention, but equally exciting is the Scala grinder! This grinder can be a touch confusing because it’s really designed for slow brewing, not espresso. As such, we recommend it as a perfect pair for a new pour over set up or drip brewer.

    In the slow brew space, the Scala makes a few concessions on case material and looks to provide an incredibly solid grind for a very affordable price point. At first glance you might dismiss it, but we really think it’s the sweet spot for price and performance in its price range. With a great grind, good range from coarse to fine drip, and a timer, this is a grinder that definitely punches above its weight.

    Breville Dynamic Duo

    This one’s not so much a new product as a new way to get started or upgrade. Breville offers some great all-in-ones in the Barista Express and Barista Pro, but the issue here is that you can’t independently upgrade your grinder and machine. That’s fine for a user brand-new to espresso, but when you are ready to move up to a new setup, the Dynamic Duo is now waiting for you.

    This bundle includes a Dual Boiler espresso machine and Smart Grinder Pro. The Smart Grinder Pro is a great grinder for its price point, offering a grind fine enough for espresso, easy to use features, and simple maintenance. On the machine front, the Dual Boiler is one of Breville’s finest offerings. Filling the void between entry-level machines and higher end prosumer models, the Dual Boiler is likely the perfect machine for a huge number of users out there. Now you can get this great bundle at an equally great price!

    Rancilio Silvia Pro

    The Silvia has been a longstanding stalwart of the ~$1,000 price range for espresso machines for a long time. This is because this machine can be a great one to learn on, and with some practice, creates nearly cafe quality shots. There have been calls for Rancilio to offer a more prosumer version of the Silvia for a while, and those calls have finally been answered!

    The Silvia Pro ups the ante by including a second boiler for simultaneous brewing and steaming. It also includes built-in PID control with a shot timer, which corrects one of the trickier parts of the base Silvia (temperature stability). Finally, auto-on programming is a real highlight and fan favorite! The Silvia Pro is an example of a true upgrade in pretty much every way that doesn’t lose the parts of the base Silvia that have made it such a beloved machine.

    Fellow Ode

    The Fellow Ode is a huge shift in the brew grinding paradigm. Fellow always brings some pretty radical, intense design sensibility to their products, and the Ode is no different. This is a grinder designed exclusively for single dosing slow brew grinds. What this means is that it doesn’t have a traditional hopper, instead, you only pour in the amount of beans you’re using for your brew. Incredible features like a magnetized catch bin, a knock arm, big, chunky grind setting wheel, and auto-stop grinding give this grinder a premium feel backed up by strong innovations in grinder tech. 

    While the Ode is one the pricier side for brew grinders, it really is one of the best ways to grind for your pour over or other slow brewed coffee method.

     

    And there you have it! Check out these fine new products and get your year started right with some fresh coffee!

     

  • Coffee Grinder Basics - A Refresher

    It’s a new year and you may have gotten some new coffee gear over the holidays to go with it! One thing we often hear from new coffee drinkers is that they didn’t know they’d need a new grinder. That’s why we want to run through some quick grinder basics today to help you understand your new grinder or why you might need one! Let’s get started.

    Why Do I Need a Burr Grinder?

    Your first question might be why you even need a dedicated coffee grinder in the first place. Maybe you’ve got a spice or blade grinder and you’re wondering why that won’t work for coffee too. The answer is simple: consistency. To get the proper extraction, no matter your brew method, you’ll need consistent grounds. This allows the hot water to bond with the coffee correctly, and produce the flavor you’re looking for. What level of grind you need is dependent on your brew method, but consistency is key for every method.

    Blade grinders have a tendency to chop up beans into uneven chunks. This is a problem because it means you won’t have a consistent grind across your output. Burrs are metal plates that interlock either in a conical shape or as flat plates. They are engineered specifically to spin in such a way that their surface evenly grinds down coffee beans consistently and evenly. You’ll want a grinder specifically for coffee because the oils in coffee could taint your spices, and vice versa! 

    Are All Grinders Created Equal?

    If you’ve looked at the price range on coffee grinders you probably already know the answer to this question. A great coffee grinder can cost anywhere from under $100 all the way up to thousands of dollars. So what’s with the spread? Well, there are tons and tons of different factors that determine the cost of a coffee grinder, but let’s start with brew vs. espresso grinding. 

    One thing you may have noticed is that espresso grinders tend to cost more than “brew” grinders (grinders for slow brew coffee methods like pour over and drip). This is partly because the precision burrs needed to produce the ultra-fine powdery consistency needed for espresso cost more to engineer. It really is the case that you need that precision grind for high-end espresso, and your shots will not come out correct if you try to use a $100 burr grinder.

    With that said, that $100 burr grinder will likely be even better at producing a consistent pour over grind than the more expensive espresso grinder. This is because higher end espresso grinders don’t often have the consistency down at coarser grind levels. All of this is important to keep in mind when considering what kind of grinder to get.

    Then there’s features. A Solis Scala is a great place to start with brew grinding, as it features a simple timer and great performance for slow brew coffee. On the other hand, the Eureka Mignon Brew Pro features a touch screen interface, slick black design, and precision grind adjust. In this case, both grinders can provide some great grounds for drip brewing, but the Brew Pro absolutely gives you what you pay for. A similar dichotomy exists between a grinder like the Eureka Mignon Notte and the Rocket Espresso Fausto Touch. Both offer great performance for espresso grinding, but one pairs a higher price with more advanced features and design.

    More features like weighted dosing, lighted grind chutes, deeper programming, etc. can add more functionality, but the price of the product will rise in turn.

    How Should I Maintain My Grinder?

    So you have your new Baratza Encore (or other grinder) and you want to make sure you keep it in great shape, so what’s next? 

    First of all, you’ll want to wipe down your hopper with a dry cloth between filling, and do the same for your catch bin if using one. It doesn’t hurt to wash these each with dish soap and warm water every few fillings or so as well.

    Another tool for keeping your grinder clean is Urnex’ Grindz. Grindz is a cleaner you run through your grinder every month or two to clean out the grind chamber, burrs, and chute. We absolutely recommend it for keeping yours in top condition! As always though, the most important thing with maintaining any coffee equipment is to follow the guidelines in the manual. In some cases, manufacturers do recommend disassembling and hand cleaning parts of the inside of the grinder, but you should be sure to follow your manual for guidance on that. 

    We hope this helps you get started with your grinder!

  • Video Roundup: 1/15/2021

    It's time for another Video Roundup!

    We've got three fresh videos for you this week, we hope you'll join us!

    First, we've got a Crew Tasting with Jake and Pat for our Roast of the Month!

    Next up, Ariel gave us some insight into the SCA coffee flavor wheel:

    And last but not least, John's got a Crew Review of the Eureka Helios 65:

    That's all for now, join us next week for more videos!

  • Budget Grinder Shootout

    Happy 2021! 

    We wanted to kick off the new year with a look at four fantastic budget grinders that are perfect for new users. Check out the video below to see these grinders in action, hosted by yours truly! (And check out our new studio!)

    Let’s recap the breakdown:

    Bodum Bistro

    The Bistro is a grinder with a lot of range and some great usability features. First, it can definitely handle everything from a shot of espresso with a pressurized basket to a press. The grounds are not as consistent as we’d like at either extreme, but fine for both applications and everything in between. 

    With a layout of grind times and recipes built into the hopper lid, you’ll be able to get started quick with this grinder. We also liked the grippy rubber material on the catch bin as well as the rubber gasket that prevents mess. Unfortunately, due to static buildup, the catch bin can get messy in a hurry.

    Otherwise, we had good retention results, but the general plasticy nature of the dials and buttons here leave something to be desired.

    Capresso Infinity

    The Infinity offers quite simple controls in its timer dial that grinds until it stops. The timer doesn’t match up to seconds, which can be confusing at first. We generally just found it easier to single dose (pour in only the beans you need) or just manually hold the dial in place to grind and then rotate it closed when finished.

    The Infinity offers decent consistency and a little less range than the Bistro. With that said we generally liked the quality of the grounds more and enjoyed the lack of mess and low retention. The casing on the Infinity also feels more solid than the other grinders in this lineup.

    Solis Scala

    The Solis Scala is a really nice sweet spot on this list. It offers a pretty solid range that can definitely run from pressurized espresso shots up to presses. It also provides an impressive degree of consistency across its range. Its timer/push button activation is intuitive and it offers some solid retention and limited static.

    The catch bin is a little small and the plastic lid might take a little bit of getting used to. This grinder also feels a little plasticy all around, but it’s not quite “cheap” feeling either.

    Overall, the Scala is a highlight of this list when you combine performance, price, and usability.

    Baratza Encore

    The classic on this list, the Encore is definitely a great option that will last you many years. While we actually think the Scala stands toe-to-toe with the Encore in terms of performance, there’s no denying that Baratza’s grinder offers great range and consistency. We also love the simplicity of this machine.

    Static here is minimal, but the Encore does usually end up retaining half a gram of coffee or so. Not terrible, but it could be better. Otherwise, this is a great grinder that is also easy to get parts for, meaning you can keep it running for a very long time with a little bit of elbow grease.

    So there you have it! Unfortunately as usual we can’t just point to one of these grinders as the king of the entry level. But hopefully this comparison has helped you understand what makes them tick just a little bit more.

  • 2020 Holiday Shopping Guide: Pour Over

    It’s time for another holiday shopping guide! Today we’re looking at the wide world of pour over. This is a brew method many new coffee enthusiasts get into to start understanding specialty coffee, and we think it truly is a great way to learn! While pour over isn’t prohibitively expensive, there are more parts to it than with drip or even espresso. With that in mind, let’s get started with the most important part of your pour over set…

    Grinders

    The most important thing about drinking specialty coffee is fresh grinding your beans. With that in mind, a blade grinder just isn’t going to cut it. You’ll want a burr grinder designed for grinding in the brew range, as opposed to super-fine for espresso. Luckily, there are multiple grinders in an affordable range to pick from!

    The first on the list is the Baratza Encore. This is a legendary grinder known for its reliability, performance, and ease of use. Any new specialty coffee enthusiast will get years of use out of an encore. This year, Seattle Coffee Gear is also excited to offer the Solis Scala! The Scala isn’t quite as proven as the Encore yet, but offers an excellent value and exceptional performance for drip, press, and pour over brewing, as well as a timed grinding option that the Encore lacks.

    If you’re looking for something a little more challenging to learn on, but that offers more precision, there’s the Eureka Mignon Crono. The Crono’s stepless grind adjust can be tough to master, but it offers the ability to get a very precise grind perfect for getting every note out of those tricky single origin roasts. The Crono does come in at a higher price than the Scala and the Encore, and may be well suited for an upgrade if you’ve already got a burr grinder that you’re looking to grow from. 

    With your grinder picked out, there’s a few more pieces of gear you’ll need to get brewing!

    Scales and Kettles

    Outside of fresh grinding your beans, the other key components to brewing great coffee are water temperature and proper grounds to water ratios. Consistent temperature in the 195-205 fahrenheit range is key to getting a great pour over (or any coffee brew). To achieve that, you’ll want a kettle that you can trust, and that offers variable temperatures. For this, we think the best combination of price, performance, and features for this holiday season is the Bonavita Interurban. The Interurban provides precision temperature control, multiple presets, and a stylish look with multiple finish options.

    In terms of scales, there’s a couple of great ways you can go. Your scale is very important because you need to both weigh your grounds going in, and weigh as you pour to ensure the proper ratio. To achieve this, we recommend either the Hario V60 Drip Scale or the Oxo Precision Scale and Timer. Both are reasonably priced, accurate, and feature timers to help you with your bloom and pours.

    For those looking to take their weighing the extra mile, the Acaia Pearl offers even more precise weight, an expanded set of brew modes, and connectivity with Acaia’s smartphone apps, which help you dial in your pour over recipe to the T.

    Drippers and Servers

    For your choice of dripper, it really comes down to preference, as all drippers do create an almost imperceptible difference in flavor. For starters, there’s the Hario V60, which is a classic, and very affordable. We’d recommend the V60 as you first start exploring pour over. If you’re looking to get a little bit more adventurous, the Kalita Wave and Espro Bloom both offer interesting takes on pour over drippers, and are worth giving a try.

    Many people just brew their pour over directly into their mug of choice, but if you’re looking to brew for two, or just brew extra for yourself, you can pick up a Hario V60 Server, which is a great option for brewing a “pot” of pour over.

    With grounds, water, weight, and dripping all worked out, all you need is to add filters for your dripper of choice, and you’re good to go!

  • Top 3 Brew Grinders of 2020

    It’s that time of year! Time for the best machines and accessories of 2020. We love everything we offer at Seattle Coffee Gear, but each year our content team puts our heads together to come up with the gear that we think is the best in the industry for right here and now. Today we’re digging into our top 3 brew grinders of 2020.

    What does brew grinder mean? It means these grinders are the best of the best for brewing pour over, drip, press, cold brew, and other “slow” brew methods. This is in contrast to espresso grinders, which are specifically designed for grinding fine enough to use with an espresso machine. We don’t recommend these grinders if you’re on the hunt for a grinder to use with your Rocket Espresso machine or Rancilio Silvia Pro. Stay tuned for our Top 3 espresso grinders if you’re in that market!

    Eureka Mignon Crono

    The Eureka Mignon Crono is a peculiar grinder, but one that we absolutely love. Built on Eureka’s tried and true Mignon platform, this is a grinder that offers a little more than the Mignon Filtro. But before we look at that, let’s look at what makes Eureka’s Mignon grinders tick.

    The first thing you’ll notice about the Crono is its rock solid case design. Mignon grinders are built like tanks, and last many years if properly maintained. The Crono is no different, with a full metal case and sturdy interior components. This build quality is where a large chunk of the price tag comes from. It’s also a looker, available in black or white with the smoked catch bin and hopper built from high quality, easy to clean plastic.

    Also of key importance with the Crono is its specifically designed brew path, motor, and burr set. While other grinders in the Mignon line are engineered for espresso, the Filtro, Crono, and Brew Pro are engineered specifically for slow brew methods. Finally, the stepless adjust these grinders feature can be a challenge to use initially, but also provide heightened precision for dialing in roasts to tease out their full flavor.

    What sets the Crono apart from the Filtro is its timer. The Filtro uses a simple manual control that you have to keep held down. This means you can’t set it and walk away. The Crono on the other hand uses a simple timer, which makes single dosing a breeze. If you prefer to keep the hopper filled, you can dial in a grind time as well.

    It’s a precise, consistent, powerful, and reliable grinder with a little something extra in the form of its timer.

    Fellow Ode

    The Fellow Ode is the newest kid on the block in this list. New for 2020, the Ode is something of a revolution in brew grinding. In keeping with Fellow’s theme of empowering hobbyist coffee fans with incredible gear for pour over, the Ode is loaded with features. 

    For starters, the Ode features massive 64 mm flat burrs. This type of burr set is typically found in high-end commercial grinders, so it’s a big deal that Fellow has scrunched these into a home brew grinder. With its solid construction, beautiful visual design, and 31 grind settings, the Ode has the basics covered.

    Then there’s its wild innovations. On the simpler side, there’s the Ode’s noise reduction, which is best-in-class. From there, things get very interesting. One thing that many coffee enthusiasts will tell you is that the way to the freshest coffee is through single dosing. What that means is that you store your beans in an airtight container, and then you only put what you need for your morning brew through your grinder. This cuts down on waste and preserves your beans better than storing your beans in a grinder hopper. The Ode embraces this fully, with a small loading area that only has room for a single dose of beans. While it has plenty of space for your extra large coffee bot, it isn’t the type of hopper you leave beans sitting in. 

    Once you’ve loaded the beans, you just have to engage the motor and the Ode takes care of the grinding. With a PID Controlled motor, the Ode is able to tell when it has finished grinding your beans. A built in grinds knocker and magnetically attached catch bin reduce mess and ensure minimal retention. It really is an incredibly innovative, premium package.

    Breville Smart Grinder Pro

    We say it all the time: Use a dedicated espresso grinder if you can. But that last part is important, because not all of us can! If you have budget or space limitations, maintaining two grinders might just be impossible. There are a few grinders that can actually perform well for espresso and slow brew methods, and the Breville Smart Grinder Pro is one of them.

    The Smart Grinder Pro also represents excellent value. With 40mm conical steel burrs you’ll get a quality grind at both ends of the spectrum. You’ll also get a full 60 stepped grind settings, which is why the grinder can move so far at either end of the spectrum. A vibrant touchscreen works with the knob to give you a really clear indication of what setting you’re on as well, which is very convenient. Speaking of adjustments, you can actually get even finer or coarser grinds by opening the grinder and making adjustments to the top burr, which is supported as a feature, not a hack.

    The timed dosing offered here is impressive as well. Using the touchscreen’s foolproof interface you can set grind times. This is helpful for once you dial in a grind. If you do want to grind manually, you can just hold the activation button down as well. Finally, you can pause mid-grand to level out the grounds or check weight, which can help with dialing in that time programming. 

    While we really do love the Smart Grinder Pro, it is important to note a couple of tradeoffs. It’s not going to perform quite as well at either end of the grind scale as a dedicated brew or espresso grinder. While it’s going to produce a good grind, there is still a reason to seek dedicated grinders. Part of that is also that switching back and forth from an espresso grind to a brew grind can be frustrating, and it’s important to keep that in mind. Otherwise, this is a great pick for anyone working with a tighter budget or who doesn’t have room for two grinders.

    Baratza Encore

    And here we have an entry that could very well make this list forever. The Baratza Encore remains one of the best starting points in coffee. There are few pieces of gear that a budding pour over enthusiast will get more use out of. The Encore continues to combine high quality engineering, a commitment to reliability and repairability, and an attractive price point.

    If you’re not familiar, the Encore is a simple machine. A rotating hopper provides 40 stepped grind settings, a simple on off switch engages the motor, and a molded catch bin catches the grinds. You can also grind a little extra with the Encore’s pulse button, located above the hopper.

    It’s the Encore’s performance and reliability that make this grinder such a shoe in for our best of list every year. With extensive parts availability through Baratza, your Encore could last decades with proper maintenance and the occasional repair. Its 40mm burrs are easily accessible and simple to clean as well. Once you put it all together you get a grinder for the ages, and it’s available at an excellent price point.

    New this year is a stylish white finish, finally offering an alternative to the black version.

    All three of these grinders could be the last brew grinder you ever need to buy, and we love them for that. Stay with us for more best of 2020 content throughout the month! Make Coffee You Love!

  • 2020 Holiday Shopping Guide: Drip Brewers

    Today we’re taking a look at shopping for the perfect drip brewing setup whether its for someone on your gift list or yourself! We’ll go over brewers, grinders, and all the extra odds and ends. Let’s get started!

    Brewers

    Your choice in drip brewer is guided primarily by how much choice you want when it comes to your coffee. For many coffee drinkers, simply pressing a button and getting a great cup is enough. Others want much more careful control over temperature, flow rate, and other parameters. Both are valid approaches, a high quality pot of coffee at the push of a button is a really great way to start the day. On the other hand, some people really enjoy the granular control of being able to experiment with parameters and settings.

    The good news is, you can get a brewer that offers both a simple, consistent option and puts control at your fingertips. We’re talking, of course, about the Breville Precision Brewer.

    The Precision Brewer offers a standard gold cup brewing setting that’s certified by the Specialty Coffee Association. This means that you can get that nice and simple pot of delicious coffee with just a few button presses. You can also control a whole host of parameters like flow rate, temperature, and pre-infusion time. The Precision Brewer also has pre-settings for single cup brewing, iced coffee, and pour over (with the Tribute Edition’s included pour over adapter).

    It all makes the Precision Brewer the very best you can buy and a brewer that will handle all of your coffee needs. 

    For the more budget conscious shopper, the Bonavita Connoisseur and Metropolitan are simple brewers that produce high quality results. With strong temperature stability and push button operation, these machines are solid choices for those just getting started in the world of coffee.

    Grinders

    Grinding for drip is a little less difficult than espresso, but you will need more than just a blade grinder! Using a burr grinder is important for getting just the right consistency and quality in your grind. The good news is there are a few really great starting points for new coffee enthusiasts!

    The thing you’re looking for in getting started with brew grinding is really that consistency. You want grounds that are uniform and at just the right level of coarseness. There are a few grinders we recommend to get the job done. First, there’s the relatively new kid on the block, the Solis Scala. This is a grinder that offers simple timed dosing options and stepped grind settings. You’ll get just the right grind every time, and you can use this grinder for a range of slow brewing applications. If you’re looking for an alternative, the Eureka Mignon Crono offers even more precise grinding than the Scala. With Eureka's high quality burrs, you'll get very high quality grounds with a stepless grind adjust for extremely precise grinding. This precision will help you dial in even the trickiest single origins for your new drip brewer, but it'll take a touch of practice!

    Odds and Ends

    There are a couple of odds and ends we highly recommend you add to your drip brewing setup. For starters, there’s drinkware. We really love the Acme Union as a classic stock standard cup to enjoy your drip from. It’s stylish, durable, and easy to drink from. It really has that classic coffee cup look, and it’ll serve your new drip setup well.

    The other important part of any coffee setup is storage. Storing your coffee beans in your grinder hopper can lead to staleness depending on how fast you use them. That’s why we recommend the use of a container like an Airscape to get the very best out of your fresh whole bean coffee. Available in multiple sizes, materials, and colors, we’re sure there’s an Airscape perfect for your coffee kit!

    And there you have it! Everything you need to get yourself or someone on your gift list started in the wonderful world of specialty drip coffee brewing!

  • Top 3 Espresso Grinders of 2020

    It’s time for another of our 2020 Best Ofs! This time we’re taking a look at espresso grinders. It’s important to differentiate between espresso and brew grinders to make sure you get the right bit of gear for you. A brew grinder will be designed for slow brew methods like drip, pour over, press, and cold brew. On the other hand you have espresso grinders, which are designed to brew fine enough for use in semi-automatic espresso machines. While grinders exist that can do both, they are few and far between, and to get the very best espresso you’ll want a dedicated grinder. Let’s take a look at our favorite espresso grinders available today!

    Eureka Mignon Notte

    The Eureka Mignon line is one of the best lineups of espresso grinders available. The balance of price, performance, and reliability make these grinders incredibly easy to recommend. Because they are priced above many entry level espresso grinders, we often recommend them as an upgrade, or for a new user who’s a little more confident. This is part of why we were so thrilled to bring the Notte in as a Seattle Coffee Gear exclusive.

    The Mignon Notte trades the sound insulation in the Mignon Silenzio for an incredibly attractive price point for a grinder of this quality. That means for a cost comparable to more entry level grinders, you’ll get the exceptional design and build quality of a Eureka Mignon. But what does that look like specifically? First of all, you get the same powerful 50mm flat steel burrs that come in the Silenzio. Burrs of this size and quality are hard to come by at any price point, and we love the consistency of the grounds out of the Notte. You’ll also get the Mignon-standard metal casing, which will help your Notte to last years and years. Finally, there’s the precision stepless adjust. Instead of stepped settings, the Mignon Notte gives you a free-moving burr, which lets you develop an extremely precise grind for trickier single origins. 

    So what do you lose out on? As noted, the Notte is a bit louder than its more expensive brethren, but don’t let that fool you, the noise level is very comparable to any other entry level grinder. You also only get a simple push button dosing option. This means you’ll need to measure your grounds with a scale to ensure the correct grind amount. The good news here is that with a little bit of practice, you’ll be able to feel out the right grind amount quite effectively.

    The Eureka Mignon Notte is one of our absolute favorites on the market, so it’s a no brainer for this list.

    Rocket Espresso Faustino

    If you know anything about Seattle Coffee Gear, you know we love Rocket Espresso machines. The same thing is true for their grinders! Last year their larger Fausto espresso grinder found a little sibling with the Rocket Espresso Faustino. There’s a number of reasons we feel it’s a great fit for this list.

    First of all, the Faustino delivers on performance. With 50 mm flat steel burrs, this grinder will give you serious consistency and quality. On top of that, you’ve got a stepless grind adjust, which we prefer for more precision grinding (though it does come with a bit of a learning curve). These features alone make the Faustino easy to recommend, but it also comes with Rocket Espresso’s signature visual design prowess and solid construction. This grinder is a looker, and it’s built to last. You can even get versions that include case cutouts with side panels, just like the Appartamento espresso machine (which also makes it a perfect pair with one of our favorie machines).

    Then there’s the programmability. Programmable dosing isn’t a must-have, but it’s an incredibly nice feature that can save you a lot of time. A vibrant, intuitive touchscreen drives the programming on the Faustino. With this, you can set specific dosage times, so once you dial in a grind, you can get your grounds with one press of the portafilter. The Faustino also offers a large hopper capable of storing a lot of beans. This is perfect to pair with that timed dosing. What’s more, it fits all of this into a compact case fit for any kitchen.

    You might think Rocket Espresso is only about espresso machines, but the Faustino proves they know grinders too. 

    Baratza Sette 270

    Baratza are absolutely one of the kings of coffee grinding. Whether brew or espresso, this manufacturer knows 

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