The under-appreciated but most important tool, the Grinder
Ground coffee starts losing its flavour from the moment the bean is converted into ground coffee. Some say up to 30% of the flavour disappears in the first twenty minutes or so. Whether you are making your own brew at home in a plunger or any other system or preparing a grind for a traditional espresso machine, grinding your own coffee is the best way to avoid the flavour-losing time-lapse between grinding and brewing.
Invest in a good coffee grinder
We stock the La Cimbali Deko on-demand grinder. This is such a good grinder that it is ‘almost’ good enough for professional use. As a home grinder, this should give you years of satisfying use and should be considered by coffee lovers as an essential step. We do NOT recommend the blade grinders typically found in a kitchen. The grind size is always inconsistent and a bit of a hit-and-miss affair. There are also some low-cost hand grinders which do add to the joy of preparing your brew. Whichever way you choose to go, do seek out a grinder that is (i) adjustable and (ii) has burrs (conical or flat) and definitely NOT the high-speed blade options. The latter do not grind, they pulverise, and the result is an inconsistent grind and poor-tasting coffee.
From our roaster – “As a roaster, I honestly wish that we only distributed our coffee in their bean format. This is the best way of maintaining flavour. This said we have also invested in extremely powerful vacuum packing systems and are now able to extract all the air from the coffee at the time of packing. This certainly helps ensure that our coffee gets to your kitchen the best way possible.”
Coffee grinders for commercial applications
Two key elements need to be considered, the speed and quality of delivery. One is looking for a measured dose of coffee in just a few seconds and most importantly, the right grind size for the day. We say for the day because the ideal grind size varies according to humidity levels. The Casadio Enea seen on the right has accurate and easy-to-use digital controls and also a fine-tuning knob located on the right-hand side of the machine. As one adjusts this between courser and fine, one can track this on the digital screen.
One program the grinder to prepare either a single or double dose of coffee. The timer and fineness are set and from there on, the fine-tuning should be all you need for the rest of the day. We have sold many of the Casadio Enea, pictured on the right and have no hesitation in recommending this product.
Which is the right coffee grind
A general guideline is that a sand type grind is best for filter coffee or non-pressurised systems. You however need to consider your own tastes and what you want out of your coffee. The finer the grind, the more bitter the coffee and vice-versa. A large grind tends to be a little sweeter.
If you are using an espresso preparation system or perhaps a stove-top brew method, you will be looking for a fine grind and for Turkish and similar coffees, the finer the between. The advantage of an adjustable grinder is that you can experiment with the grind size and different coffees.