Training log #3 by Patrik Rolf - What is your favourite Coffee Grinder?
For me, there is a lot of good different grinders on the market. For a long time, I used the most basic Vilfa Grinder (I won my first Swedish Brewers Championship using that grinder). Ultimately it's about finding one that fits your brewing style - the character you want your brewed coffee to have.
For the last two years, I have been focusing on the Ditting Sweet K804 Lab Grinder. I bought one of the first sample models when they took over the official grinder sponsorship for the World Brewers Championship. I needed to practice using it for the Compulsory round, and at the same time, I decided to grind on stage during my Open Service. Long story short, I have spent a lot of time with the grinder over the last two years.
Moving forward in this post keep in mind that I don't have any scientific proof to back up the following arguments and comparison; it's my experience.
I find that overall "electric" grinders generate a better cup quality than hand grinders. The main difference being the speed of the grinding, it seems to enhance the vibrancy of the final cup.
On top of that, you can work a lot faster with an "electric" grinder than a hand grinder, backstage in a world competition that can make all the difference in the world. The only strong argument for a hand grinder is that it's easier to travel with - but these days I prefer to pack a few of the April Filter Drip Pack. Then I don't need a grinder.
The last years it's been a lot of EK43 hysteria and, I agree that it's a perfectly fine grinder. What has me choose the Ditting Models over the EK43 is all the alignment issues that the EK43 has, I haven't experienced that same issue with the Ditting. However, for Espresso brewing, I would still argue for the EK43.
To sum up, I like to add that I always prefer "grinding-course" for all brew methods. I believe it creates a higher quality flavor experience. I also prefer a range of particle sizes. I don't believe in sifting grounds it takes out a lot of complexity from the cup quality. On top of that, it's impossible to do consistently unless you have graded laboratory gear.