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Buying guide for best Baratza coffee grinders

If you’re a coffee aficionado, you likely know how much better your coffee tastes if you grind the beans yourself. Plenty of coffee grinders can get the job done, but if you want a top-of-the-line model, Baratza coffee grinders are some of the finest on the market.

Baratza grinders all feature burrs, so they provide a consistent, uniform grind. That means your coffee grounds are all the same size, which can improve the taste and keep your coffee maker from clogging. These grinders also allow you to control the coarseness or fineness of the grounds, so you get a perfect cup of coffee every time.

Baratza offers plenty of coffee grinders, so choosing the best one for your kitchen can be challenging. To find the right model, you have to understand the difference between flat and conical burrs, decide what hopper capacity you need, think about the type of coffee you drink most often, and determine what other features can make a grinder easier to use.

coffee
Coffee beans have the best flavor in the days just after they’re roasted, so you should grind and brew beans within a month of their roasting date.

How to buy the best Baratza coffee grinder

Blade vs. burr grinders

All Baratza coffee grinders are burr grinders, but if you’ve been using a traditional blade grinder, you might not understand what that means in terms of your coffee.

Blade grinders have a blade that spins to essentially chop up the beans. These grinders generate more heat than burr grinders, which can affect the taste of the coffee.

Burr grinders have two rotating disks or cones with an abrasive surface. When the grinder is on, the beans get trapped between the burrs and ground into small pieces. As a result, this type of grinder produces grounds that are more uniform. It also gives you greater control over the size of the grind. These grinders don’t generate as much heat as blade grinders, so they more effectively preserve your coffee’s taste and aroma.

Flat vs. conical burr grinders

While all Baratza grinders use burrs, you have a choice between flat and conical burrs. Both styles work the same way: the beans get trapped between rotating parts to grind the coffee.

Flat burr grinders include two parallel disks with teeth on their surfaces. A flat burr grinder usually provides the most consistent grounds.

However, it also generates more heat because it requires greater mechanical power. The heat can break down the natural oils in the beans, which can affect the overall taste and aroma of your cup of coffee. Grounds are more likely to get trapped in a flat burr grinder too, so it’s typically more difficult to clean. In some cases, stale grounds can get left behind and mixed into fresh grounds, affecting the taste of your coffee.

Conical burr grinders have a disk with teeth and a cone that sits inside. Conical burrs are a better option if you’re concerned about noise because they run at fewer revolutions per minute (rpm). Because they move more slowly, conical burr grinders are quieter to operate than flat burr grinders.

Hopper capacity

Baratza coffee grinders typically have a relatively small hopper to hold the coffee beans. Those meant for home use hold between 5 and 8 ounces, while those intended for commercial use typically hold 10 to 16 ounces.

Because of the smaller capacity, Baratza grinders have a compact size that makes them easy to fit in most kitchens. In fact, many fit beneath kitchen cabinets, so you don’t have to use up cabinet space for storage.

Baratza coffee grinders typically take 8 to 10 seconds for a coarse grind, 10 to 15 seconds for a medium grind, and approximately 20 seconds for a fine grind.

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What features should I look for in a Baratza coffee grinder?

Controls

Mechanical: Some Baratza coffee grinders have dial and/or button controls. While they’re relatively easy to use, it can sometimes be difficult to see the precise settings you’ve selected.

Digital: Other Baratza coffee grinders have a user-friendly digital control panel. Not only do these controls make it easy to choose your desired settings, but the clear display also allows you to see the selected settings at a glance, so you’re always sure you’re grinding your coffee exactly the way you want.

Auto shutoff: If you have a habit of forgetting to turn off your appliances, you might want a Baratza coffee grinder with automatic shutoff. It turns off the grinder after a certain amount of time when it’s not in use.

Grind settings

The grind settings determine the texture of your coffee grounds. Depending on the type of coffee you’re brewing, you might want grounds that are very coarse, very fine, or something in between.

Some Baratza grinders have as few as ten grind settings, while others have over 200. A grinder with more settings allows you to precisely control the texture so your coffee tastes exactly the way you want. If you only make one or two types of coffee or use a single brew method to prepare your coffee, you probably don’t need a grinder with a lot of settings. However, if you like to make several different types of coffee or use multiple brew methods, you’ll prefer a model with more grind settings.

Removable burrs

Some Baratza coffee grinders have removable burrs, which makes it much easier to clean them. By taking them out of the grinder, you can make sure that they’re completely free of grounds. In most cases, you don't need any tools to remove the burrs.

Device holder

Some Baratza grinders include a device holder that allows you to quickly and easily grind beans directly into the portafilter or other container from your espresso or coffee machine.

coffee grinder
DID YOU KNOW?
For the best-tasting coffee, it’s essential to clean your Baratza coffee grinder regularly. The oils from the beans can leave residue on the components and affect the flavor of the coffee.
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How do I accessorize a Baratza coffee grinder?

Coffee maker

If you’re going to the trouble of grinding fresh coffee beans, you might want to upgrade your coffee maker to make sure you’re enjoying the best-tasting cup of coffee. Drip coffee makers are easy to use and relatively inexpensive.

Espresso maker

If you prefer a stronger cup of coffee, you should pair your new grinder with a high-end espresso machine. Many espresso machines can make other coffee-based drinks like cappuccinos or lattes, and some also make regular coffee too.

How much do Baratza coffee grinders cost?

Inexpensive

The most affordable Baratza coffee grinders are smaller and take up less counter space. These don’t have as many grind settings, with most models offering 40 or fewer. Most don’t have a digital control panel. These Baratza coffee grinders typically cost between $169 and $250.

Mid-range

These Baratza coffee grinders are larger and take up more counter space. They have a bigger hopper capacity, at least 30 grind settings, and LED digital controls. These grinders generally cost between $250 and $480.

Expensive

The most expensive Baratza coffee grinders are commercial-grade grinders. They have a larger capacity, an LED digital display, and at least 200 grind settings. They typically cost between $480 and $899.

Some Baratza grinders work better for the finer grounds needed for espresso, so they’re not the best option if you prefer a medium or coarse grind.

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Tips

  • Store your whole coffee beans in a dark, airtight container. Air, light, heat, and moisture can break down the beans and their natural oils.
  • Grind the beans right before you brew your coffee. Coffee beans start to degrade as soon as you grind them, so you’ll get the best-tasting coffee if you grind just before you brew.
  • Measure your coffee beans carefully. It helps to have a kitchen scale to weigh the beans so you can measure them accurately.
  • Choose your grind setting based on the brewing method. For a French press, opt for a coarse setting. For drip coffee makers, use a medium setting. For espresso, a fine setting works best.
coffee
For a strong cup of coffee, start with approximately 2 tablespoons of coffee beans for each 6 to 8 ounces of water. You can adjust the amount to make the coffee as strong as you like.

FAQ

Q. Where are Baratza coffee grinders made?

A. Baratza grinders are designed in Seattle and built in Taiwan. The burrs are made in Europe.

Q. How long do the burrs in a Baratza grinder usually last?

A. It depends on how often you use it. Baratza steel burrs can handle up to 500 pounds of grinding, while Baratza ceramic burrs can typically withstand 750 pounds of grinding. That generally means the grinder’s burrs can last about a decade. You can replace the burrs when they get worn out, so you won’t need to buy a new grinder.

Q. Are Baratza grinders very noisy?

A. All coffee grinders make noise, but some models are noisier than others. Smaller, more compact Baratza coffee grinders tend to make less noise than larger, commercial-grade models.

 

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