With every coffee making contraption, be it a French press or the traditional coffee machine that is in the break room of offices across the world comes a vital choice concerning the grind.
It is important to find the best grind size for the type of coffee you’re making. Too fine of a grind, and the coffee can be extremely over extracted, but too coarse, and it will lack key flavors.Conversely if you put a course grind of bean in an espresso machine it will lack body and flavor and be under extracted.
Now, let’s take a look at the type of grind to use for a few brew methods to get the optimal flavor.
Best grind for
Normal coffee machine:
For the typical counter top coffee machine, a medium to medium-fine grind will be your best bet for success. Pretty much what almost all pre-ground coffee is sold as.
The bar pressure of your machine has a bearing on this but we regard a normal coffee machine as a sub 7 bar espresso or drip coffee maker.
For a French press, you’ll be looking for super coarse. Usually a grinder’s most coarse setting.
Turkish or Greek:
The polar opposite of the grind for French. For Turkish coffee, you will need the finest grind you can possibly find or make.
This stuff has to be a fine powder. I personally do a course grind then a much finer grind to create a two stage grind process, I find it gives a more consistent result with my grinder.
Pour over & drip coffee makers:
From my experience, the same grind used for a coffee machine works great with a pour over set up.
But to a degree this is affected by your filter medium, the plastic and metal mesh reusable filters usually get better results from a more course grind.
An Aeropress is a little different, as there are tons of recipes that call for different grind size, from fine all the way to coarse.
Typically though, a grind that is just a click or two finer than what would be used for a normal coffee machine will do the trick.
Normally, the grind for espresso machines is quite fine.
But, if the machine is used a lot in one sitting, the grind size may need to be adjusted throughout the time of it being used.
It is always best to calibrate the machine every few uses, just to make sure that it is pulling shots within a timely manner. Just about every espresso machine is different, so as long as the shots look and taste good, you should be golden.
As you’ve seen, just about every brewing methods requires a different grind size of coffee to ensure that all the nuances of the bean make their way into the cup.
Another tip is to grind your coffee as close to when you will use it as possible. Store bought coffee that is already ground and is opened a lot, will go stale much faster than beans would that are kept in an airtight canister. Once you drink coffee made from freshly ground beans, you will never want to go back.