Ever wonder how to grind coffee beans?The type of coffee that you want is directly related to the size of the grind. If you were to put whole coffee beans into your coffee machine (or just a pot of water), relatively little would happen.
Essentially, this is the weakest coffee you can brew and its light-brown color isn’t that appetizing to look at. Even working with a top-notch quality whole bean coffee brand like Eight O’Clock Coffee – Original Whole Bean won’t be able to save your morning routine!
But, this is the baseline we can establish for coffee. And as much as you try, you can’t overbrew it. For the rest of us who like to “taste” our coffee, it comes down to the length of brewing, the temperature, and how the coffee is ground. Everyone’s tasted—and felt–coffee that’s been overbrewed.
Essentially, coffee is ground at different sizes for different methods of brewing because they are meant to stay in water for different lengths of time.
- For cold brew coffee, a coarse ground is sufficient.
- For a French press, a finer-coarse grind is necessary because that method only generally needs four minutes before pushing down the plunger, stopping much of the brewing process.
- For a drip machine, a finer grind is need, as the water slowly leaks past the filter and into a pot.
- Espresso uses almost the finest grind, as the water is literally forced past coffee, resulting in espresso’s full-bodied flavor and potent caffeine content.
- Lastly, for Turkish coffee, the grind almost becomes a fine powder, which leaves a sediment at the bottom that’s—for lack of a better term—an acquired texture. But delicious nonetheless.
It comes down to the method of grinding, as well.
Grinding by Hand
Pros: Grinding by hand offers the benefits of a relatively quiet grinding process. Also, because they aren’t powered by electricity, the portability can come in handy (pun intended) on camping trips.
Cons: Obviously this method takes some elbow grease and upwards of a minute of twisting the handcrank. And while you can control the method of grinding manually, consistency can give way to effort, especially if you are going for an espresso or a Turkish coffee.
Recommended: Brillante Manual Coffee Grinde
Pros: Blade grinding offers unmatched speed and consistency that hand grinding lacks by nature. Often, these are automatic or push-button initiated so you can handle your other meal prep tasks simultaneously.
Cons: Connoisseurs tend to frown on blade grinders, as they feel that the heat generated by the blade’s friction causes the essential oils of coffee to taste burnt. Because of the uniformity of the grinds, they also believe that the coffee lacks a richer flavor profile. And unless you take a generator with you in the woods, blade grinders typically have to stay home.
Recommended: Cuisinart Grind Central Coffee Grinder
Pros: Burr grinders, typically made from ceramic, minimize heat from the grinding process, which creates a more flavorful blend. Because of their nature, the grind can have some variations, which creates a mélange of flavor notes that coffee producers (like the aforementioned Eight O’Clock Coffee – Original Whole Bean) take great pains to cultivate. Automatic burr grinders can free up your kitchen routine and create a custom grind depending on your tastes.
Cons: The ceramic burrs do wear out faster than metal, which may be hassle for those that are accident-prone or not mechanically skilled.
Recommended: Cuisinart Supreme Grind Automatic Burr Mill
Ultimately, as like everything else in life, choosing the right grind and method comes down to your own personal taste (literally and figuratively)
Hopefully this answer the question that every coffee drinker wants to know: how to grind coffee beans!