advice on coffee grinder

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zzoldtown

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I am a coffee officiando "beginner" lol...I order some single origin Kenyan coffee but I had them grind it should I invest in my own grinder and that will result in better tasting coffee? If I had the time I would get my own beans and roast them myself but I just don't have the time at the moment
 
Yes, the grinder can make a huge difference.

What brewing method are you using and what kind of budget?
 
How are you brewing? Doing espresso, or just drip/pour over? Looking for hand grinder or electric?

Budget hand grinder option: Hario Skerton. I have owned this grinder. Build quality is just meh, and after comparing it to other grinders, grind quality is also lacking. BUT it's pretty cheap and will get you 90% of the way there.

Midrange-High End hand grinder options: James Hoffmann's hand grinder showdown will be more informative than anything I could write.

For electric grinders: Baratza Encore (conical burrs) or possibly Fellow Ode (flat burrs) would be my recommendation.

As for the question of whether or not you need one... the coffee will certainly last longer if you buy whole bean, and will be fresher as well. As I understand it, ground coffee starts to lose a lot of its volatile flavor compounds within minutes, and will go stale exponentially faster than whole bean because of the greater surface area exposed to air.

Anecdotally, it's not even close for me. Fresh ground coffee all the way. Tastes noticeably better, lasts longer.

Also, James Hoffmann is a great resource for information on coffee in general.
 
If you're bothering to get good single origin beans, you definitely should pursue grinding at home. What brew method you're using - pour over, dripper, espresso, etc. will dictate what type of grinder you need. If you're avoiding espresso and v60 pour-overs of modern process light roast coffees, I think a Baratza Encore is an excellent option. I had one for years (still have it) and never felt the desire for something else until I picked up an espresso machine and got into progressively weirder funky coffees that need super precise grinding.
 
A kenian, interesting as that is not the usual gateway drug into coffee as these beans are high in acidity and typically are benefitting from light roasts and fine grinds, higher extraction temps and need a good grinder to excel and be worth their price.
Light roasts, and especially at espresso gind settings are (physically) tougher to manually grind.
Totally agree that a dedicated grinder is a worthwile investment if that is the level of coffee you like, preground is almost always off from what you need. If you;re talking espresso you need a seriously good grinder.
 
Home-Barista is a great resource if you are intent on falling down the rabbit hole. But it is very espresso focused and also filled with extremely passionate coffee nerds. Can be overwhelming and unnecessary for someone who’s just looking to get better coffee at home but not explore a new single origin every week.

Edit: I’m saying this as someone who is on that forum and loves it
 
Home-Barista is a great resource if you are intent on falling down the rabbit hole. But it is very espresso focused and also filled with extremely passionate coffee nerds. Can be overwhelming and unnecessary for someone who’s just looking to get better coffee at home but not explore a new single origin every week.

Edit: I’m saying this as someone who is on that forum and loves it
absolutely agree, as a HB-er myself

Yet the up side is that you get to absorb the experience and knowledge of the most knowledgable folks in this area, much like on this forum about J- knives!
 
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+1 for Baratza. The Encore is a lot of bang for the buck. I dipped a little deeper and went Virtuoso.

Use beans from No Name Java and typically a drip maker.
 
The fellow ode with SSP punches WAY above its price point.

A few other folks make 64mm grinders that can take the same burrs, those are great too.
 
Have a Eureka Mignon specialita for espresso and I fully recommend it, also think it will outlive me
 

OXO Conical Burr Grinder. Not too costly, works great, and wide latitude of fineness-of-grind. Been using one for a few years, and much happier with this than with the cheaper 'spinning blade' type of grinder.
 

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