Once you have decided to make the leap from pre-ground to freshly-ground coffee, you will have yet another decision to make.
Should you go for an automatic or manual grinder?
When choosing between the two there are several factors to take into consideration. Do you need portability? How fine do you want your coffee ground? And finally, what is your price range?
Why choose an automatic grinder?
If you want to have the ability to grind your coffee at the push of a button. If you aren’t worried about having the capacity to choose grind sizes. And if you are ok with what can sometimes be extensive cleaning process, then an automatic grinder will suit you just fine.
However, if you go for an automatic grinder DO NOT get a blade grinder. Instead get yourself a good burr grinder that will ensure a consistent grind. Blade grinders are notoriously bad for grinding coffee beans in different sizes. They’re also known for leaving a burnt taste, giving an inconsistent taste and ruining your morning Joe.
Why choose a manual grinder?
If you want the ability to grind your coffee anywhere, go for a manual grinder.
Again, there are different options you can go for. My recommendation is the Porlex Manual Coffee Grinder.
Why the Porlex?
Well, Porlex makes what is perhaps the most premium hand grinders on the market. They have a sturdy stainless steel design, coupled with a simple design structure, giving it incredible longevity.
The best feature of the design is the ability to choose how coarse or how fine you want your coffee ground. Add in the spring loaded ceramic burr set, and you will never have to worry about an inconsistent grind.
How does the Porlex work?
The Porlex is broken into a few different parts. The top portion is where you insert the beans. The bottom portion houses the beans once they have been ground. And of course, there’s the hand crank.
Once you put the beans in the grinder, all you have to do is turn the handle until you don’t have any coffee left to grind. It is literally that easy.
Pros of the Porlex:
- Smooth stainless steel design looks incredible.
- High quality design, giving you a uniform grind.
- Easily adjustable grind sizes that allow you to quickly go from Turkish grinds to French presses.
- It has ceramic burrs. These are better quality than metal because they will not rust over time. You will be able to have this grinder for several years to come. Which helps to justify the price tag.
- Portability: If you are a coffee snob, you’ll likely only drink fresh coffee which means buying the pre-ground stuff is out of the question. Bringing an automatic grinder is too impractical. This is where a manual grinder shines its brightest, and the Porlex is among the best of these.
- Easy cleanup. The simplicity of the design means there isn’t much to cleaning these things.
- Lightweight, small and extraordinarily durable.
- Comes with an aeropress that it fits snugly into, giving you a great quality on the go. I love this for camping or brewing your coffee in a hotel.
Cons of the Porlex:
- The biggest issue folks have with this is the price. It can be significantly more expensive than other manual grinders, but in my estimation, it is worth shelling out the extra cash.
- Manual grinders can take a toll on you, especially if you are grinding for more than one person.
- For me, the noise of grinding the coffee is akin to nails on a chalkboard.
So is manual really the best?
There are several benefits to having a manual coffee grinder, the portability factor of them, probably is what speaks the loudest. But don’t let anybody tell you that the differences stop there.
Even the most advanced portable grinders are far more simplistic than an automatic grinder and the simplicity of these is where you really get the value.
Automatic machines have infinitely more parts which means there is a potential for infinitely more problems, not to mention you will be paying a lot more for them. Unless you get the aforementioned blade grinders (which, again, I highly recommend staying away from).
When you combine these aspects it is easy to see why so many people love their manual grinders. Maybe you wouldn’t want to use this if you have a group of people to make coffee for, but for personal use there is nothing better.
Get yourself the best coffee set-up.
Outside of drinking an excellent cup of java, there is nothing more rewarding to a coffee buff than having a kick-ass coffee-making setup. The Porlex gives you the most brewing options and the best tasting brew you will find in the realm of manual coffee grinders
Part of having that set up is having a manual grinder for those times you don’t have the luxury of pressing a button for ground coffee. If you were to ask me, The Porlex Coffee Grinder is the only manual grinder worth getting.
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- Barista Hustle – What to do with old coffee beans
- Coffee Forums UK – Can you make decent coffee with a good grinder and cheap espresso machine?