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Which Coffee Grinder Should I Buy?

May 20, 2012

A common question asked on coffee related message boards relates to "which grinder should I buy?" This is followed by a bit of filtering type questions as to what kind of coffee you want to make. When the word espresso is given then the world cracks in to pieces for the person with only a $100 to $150 to spend.  Some point to the Super Jolly they picked up for $30 at a yard sale and recommend looking for the next twenty years - every day - till you find one too.  A better idea is to look at the grinders available for this kind of money today and then pick the best choice.


 






One budget grinder getting a lot of attention lately is the offering from Bodum.I haven't tried a $99 Bodum Bistro grinder yet, but others report good luck with theirs and that says something.  Like all grinders in this price range, some compromises are bound to be made. This one can grind for pressurized espresso but likely will wear out quickly trying to grind fine on a daily basis.


 






I picked up a 2nd hand Cuisinart CBM-18N Programmable Conical Burr Mill which likely matches the Bodum and sells for $92. This one has a similar burr set to the Preciso - none of the others mentioned are six starred with a round paddle shape.  The outer burr lifts out with a handle similar in design to the Graef/Krups conical as well as the Breville conical grinders - the Breville Ikon for $99 is another contender at this price range.


 






Another popular pressurized portafilter (double wall baskets) capable grinder to consider for under $100 is the Jura-Capresso 560 Infinity Conical Burr Grinder for $85 on Amazon (silver colored model). I have a version of this grinder too - it is more capable than the Cuisinart and can get into non pressurized espresso range - probably closer the $129 Baratza Encore in capability. 


 






If you can stretch to a $138 budget the Krups Conical burr grinder (used to be only $99) plays above it's class for build and grind quality and can easily be modified to grind finer and to be step less for espresso.  This Krups is my current pick, but the Encore might slip into the top spot if the Krups sails to a $199 price.


 






Here on ROASTe you find the Espressione conical burr grinder in this price range as well - anyone have experience with this one yet?  





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