Why is it that when you go out for coffee at a café, it tastes so much better than it does at home? There are likely several factors that are working against you here, though the size of your grind is a huge part of it. Once you take control of the grind size of your coffee beans, you’ll significantly improve the way your coffee tastes.
Some people mistakenly believe that buying ground coffee is the answer to their woes. The problem with buying it ground though is that coffee loses its flavor profile as oxygen meets up with it. In bean-form, it is exposed to less oxidation, therefore retaining its flavor. You want to keep coffee as a whole bean right up until the moment you’re ready to make coffee, then grind it.
But the grind sizes vary from very fine to very coarse. So which one is the right one? Again, that depends, but here are a few clues.
Understanding What Makes Coffee Taste Extraordinary
First, let’s assume you’ve bought a quality brand of whole bean coffee and that the date it was roasted was recent. Now it’s up to you to get that perfect extraction. The flavors you get all hinge on a balance of the water-to-coffee ratio, quality of the water you use, the temperature of that water, brew time, and grind size, to name a few.
Many machines can help make short work of some of these key components, though they rely on you to get the ratio of water to coffee correct on input, to use good water, and to grind your beans to the right size. What could possibly go wrong? As it turns out, quite a lot.
Grinding your coffee beans is an art form. It’s an essential step that must take place for the extraction would never taste right if you put whole beans in for your brew. We grind the beans to increase that surface area for contacting the water. The consistency of your grind means that water will either pass through more quickly or more slowly, affecting brew time and the efficiency of the extraction.
When you grind your beans to a coarse consistency, the particles are looser so water moves between them more quickly. That means that it takes less time to brew but it also doesn’t extract as long. Conversely, finely-ground coffee beans are more densely packed so the water takes longer to make its way through, thus giving you a greater extraction.
What’s the Best Grind Size?
Much of it depends on the flavor you’re going for. You may religiously prefer a deeper, more robust flavor. It may take a bit of experimenting to find what makes you swoon in your morning cup of coffee. If you prefer a darker roast though, you’ll usually fare better with a coarser grind since its more soluble.
Often, we don’t really know how coarse is just right or too coarse, or even not coarse enough. Perhaps you’re following a coffee recipe and it says to grind your beans to a consistency of kosher sea salt. But you might be wondering how that’s different from regular table salt. On top of that, it’s not really a solid measurement, is it?
Speaking of measurements, you need to get the weight of the coffee down right too rather than simply grind up a bunch of beans and hope for the best. That all falls in line with that water-to-coffee ratio. Perhaps you nail it on the grind size but you grind up too little or too much. It happens.
That’s why some grinders will give you number options for grind sizes. But if you don’t know what you’re doing, you’ll still wind up with the wrong size. It’s too easy to mess up. You could work at it until it’s perfect, or you could stop wasting time by choosing a bean to cup coffee machine.
Why Choose a Bean to Cup Coffee Machine
The reason many people choose coffee in the morning is because it starts their day off right. Until they get that first sip, they don’t feel quite right. If you’re already tired, there’s no sense in driving yourself crazy trying to get measurements right with that grind and coffee weight with the water. All you want is a glorious cup of delicious coffee to sip while you read over the news or to take along with you to the office in your portable thermos.
Bean to cup machines are true game-changers in home coffee brewing. They take automatic coffee brewing to the next level thanks to integrated grinders. You simply weigh your while coffee beans, put them right into the machine, add the indicated amount of water needed to brew the amount you want, and voila! Barista-style coffee in your kitchen!
There are a number of versions from simplified that brew regular coffee to ones that can create cappuccino, espresso, and any coffee drink. The one thing they all have in common though is that they allow you to go from bean to cup without any stress or mess. If you truly love your coffee, it’s time to get a coffee machine that will give you the perfect brew every day.