Friday, October 28, 2011

Porlex Mini Coffee Grinder

I've recently invested in a new coffee grinder in the transition from pre-ground to beans. After some research online I ended up purchasing a Porlex Mini hand grinder from eBay (direct from Japan!).

The unit is well built of stainless steel, and includes an integrated rubber band for storing the detachable handle. Many of the reviews I read noted the following benefits:

  • Solid construction of stainless steel
  • Quality ceramic burr which is hard wearing
  • Minimal issues with static electricity build up when the weather is unsavoury

Some problems which people have encountered are:

  • Burr is held in place by a spring, and therefore the grind can be more variable when at coarser settings;
  • Plastic bumps on the 'nut' can wear out after some time so it no longer stays in place, although this can be fixed by alternatively using a washer and two nuts to hold the burr in place (a more permanent fix)
  • Burr is made of a ceramic which can be easily broken if dropped.
  • Instructions are in Japanese, although the instructions have been translated to English and are available here

Overall I think its a good hand grinder for $60 AUD (which included free shipping). I've found I can grind beans for 1-2 cups of coffee in about 60-90 seconds. The unit is also compact enough to move between home and work in my pack (or take travelling), and the band is great for keeping the handle and unit together when not in use.

For the home espresso machine my first grind I set it to 5 clicks from maximum and found the grinds to be a little coarse, resulting in a weak brew. I've found that setting it to 2 clicks from the maximum produces a good grind size for espresso. Yet to try it for the Moka pot at work, for that I'm thinking 5 clicks should do the trick.

If you are after a source on eBay from which to purchase, I purchased mine from seller cafebozu, Japanese seller with free shipping (they packed it really well too).
Also found this guide to determining the grind size based on the equipment you are using, might come in handy.

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