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Coffee Talk (Page 5)
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subego  (op)
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Mar 24, 2021, 03:08 PM
 
Only have heavy cream. Getting sick of it. Too oily.

I’m surprised I’ve only found one dairy (Dean’s) who sells light cream. This may also be a Kroger issue, but I don’t recall seeing it anywhere before (might be because I wasn’t looking).



Out of Ethiopian, too, so I’m giving the weak Burundi another shot.

Also started eying the electric grinder they sell.
     
ShortcutToMoncton
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Mar 25, 2021, 07:25 AM
 
If you’re getting a grinder, just find a gently used Baratza Encore and be done with it. Reasonably priced, very fixable, great product and company—it’s the gold standard for real grinders on a budget. You’re wasting your own time and money by fooling around elsewhere and will inevitably get there anyway.
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OreoCookie
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Mar 26, 2021, 03:16 AM
 
I finally got a grinder from my siblings for my 40th, and boy, is that an upgrade to my coffee game. I forgot how much more fragrant freshly ground coffee is.
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subego  (op)
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Apr 14, 2021, 07:09 PM
 
Originally Posted by ShortcutToMoncton View Post
If you’re getting a grinder, just find a gently used Baratza Encore and be done with it. Reasonably priced, very fixable, great product and company—it’s the gold standard for real grinders on a budget. You’re wasting your own time and money by fooling around elsewhere and will inevitably get there anyway.
IIRC, the Encore is what they sell at my roaster.

Obnoxiously, ever since the plague, they close at 4, so I was stuck today buying some more Kicking Horse. Three Sisters Medium.

It’s definitely not bad. I like it more than the darker roasts, but it’s not as, I dunno... smooth as what I’m used to.
     
ShortcutToMoncton
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Apr 15, 2021, 07:22 AM
 
Yes, it’s a stellar little grinder that does everything a non-professional really needs. Unless they’ve been bought out recently, Baratza was a smaller company out in the PNW somewhere that only makes grinders—pretty specialized. And they sell all the parts for fixing them as well as upgrade burrs for the standard model. The only negative is that it’s a tad loud and isn’t the prettiest thing you’ll ever see and your choice is white or black plastic.

I picked one up used many years ago and sold it a couple years later for not much less.
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ghporter
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Apr 16, 2021, 05:12 PM
 
I know that the two disadvantages inexpensive of blade grinders are that they aren’t as accurate in fineness, and that they can heat the beans and “change the flavor.” But from everything I’ve been able to find online, it looks like the second disadvantage is mostly theoretical. (The “noise problem” isn’t a big deal for us; it’s actually enjoyable to see how the cats react when we start the grinder. )

So has anyone bought a burr grinder and done a head-to-head taste test with the same beans?

I’ll admit that at times I have subsisted on Folgers office coffee, “industrial” food service coffee, and other lesser potations. But (to quote David Lynch) to me, “even a bad cup of coffee is better than no coffee at all.”

I like good coffee, and some of the best I can find locally seems best bought as beans and savored as a treat, rather than used for daily caffeination. But my little blade grinder (with small loads) seems to do a fine job without notable heat build up.

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subego  (op)
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Apr 28, 2021, 08:55 AM
 
The big issue I see with a blade grinder is getting a consistent, coarse grind out of it. I’d be interested in an actual taste test, though.

Still no Ethiopian in stock. The Burundi “Busanze” is working as a substitute, though.
     
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Apr 28, 2021, 11:57 AM
 
I have something to contribute; I was on the team of 3 designers responsible for Bunn's new design language in 2014-2015, and they hit production in maybe 2017-2018. This was a 1.5 year long project, and it was a VBL exercise designed to accomodate all their products, from consumer to commercial. If you want a "Rob" designed coffee maker, pretty much any of their newer brewers include my work, and if you go into a newer starbucks their newer brewers were mine too.

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subego  (op)
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Apr 28, 2021, 12:08 PM
 
I wanted to get a commercial Bunn, but they’re all so friggin huge.
     
MacNNFamous
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Apr 28, 2021, 12:14 PM
 
This one was gigantic, but turned out rad. If you see any Bunn brewer with a pill shaped detail and stainless bands/blue illumination, think of me <3

     
ghporter
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Apr 28, 2021, 02:24 PM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
The big issue I see with a blade grinder is getting a consistent, coarse grind out of it. I’d be interested in an actual taste test, though.

Still no Ethiopian in stock. The Burundi “Busanze” is working as a substitute, though.
Where you are looking for a coarser ground, we go for a particular grind that’s not quite espresso-fine, but not “Folgers generic grind” either. We sometimes re-grind to get a finer grind because we find that works best for our pour-through stuff.

We use Melita single-cup (#2) filter holders, and make individual cups of coffee. Coarser grounds tend to drip through faster and the coffee is weaker, while extra-fine grounds just don’t seem to drip through all the way. I guess we’re getting to an area where we’re not quite trying to do drip espresso, but we want more extraction than we get with coarser grinds.

I’m going to have to see about measuring how fine we like our coffee ground. The technology is easy, though I probably don’t have the hardware to do it right. How many specific particles of ground coffee should I measure with my micrometer to get a statistically sufficient population?

Glenn -----OTR/L, MOT, Tx
     
ghporter
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Apr 28, 2021, 02:34 PM
 
Originally Posted by MacNNFamous View Post
I have something to contribute; I was on the team of 3 designers responsible for Bunn's new design language in 2014-2015, and they hit production in maybe 2017-2018. This was a 1.5 year long project, and it was a VBL exercise designed to accomodate all their products, from consumer to commercial. If you want a "Rob" designed coffee maker, pretty much any of their newer brewers include my work, and if you go into a newer starbucks their newer brewers were mine too.

https://amzn.to/3epAPmV

https://amzn.to/3vbKV18

https://amzn.to/2Qo8hSH
Those look nice. Not blingy, not complex, but form and function blended well.

While it’s hard to concretely imagine a coffee maker that is “exotic looking,” I’ve had - and avoided - many designs that went way over the top with options, or were so starkly plain that it felt like you had to have someone guide you through using them for basic coffee.

Glenn -----OTR/L, MOT, Tx
     
subego  (op)
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May 5, 2021, 04:32 AM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
Only have heavy cream. Getting sick of it. Too oily.
Realized the problem was it was a month past expiration. Woops!

Finally bought an Encore. Will have it set up for the next bag.
     
ghporter
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May 5, 2021, 12:13 PM
 
Heavy cream is too heavy for my coffee most of the time. It’s a nice “treat” with a flavored coffee or in coffee while I’m eating some bakery something, but it’s easy to get tired of.

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subego  (op)
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May 5, 2021, 12:37 PM
 
I’ve found light cream, which is the heavy watered down by half, hits my sweet spot, but I’d rather go heavy than half & half or milk.
     
MacNNFamous
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May 5, 2021, 03:18 PM
 
Not a huge fan of creamer; but I did find something I LOVE; these little shots of espresso that have more caffeine, so you can spike your caffeine with more caffeine to get caffeinated caffeine, dawg.



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subego  (op)
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May 7, 2021, 05:11 AM
 
Thought someone might find the relative grinds (from fine to coarse) interesting.

     
subego  (op)
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May 7, 2021, 06:18 AM
 
Did the first grind!

Something is definitely off. Came out too strong. I think I put in too much.

It is loud, but I live alone, so NBD.

It’s slower than I imagined it’d be. Took about a minute. Also NBD, just not expected.

Some grounds get a massive static charge and stick themselves to the plastic parts of the grinder.

The one thing which mildly bugs me is there’s no place to shove extra cord. I don’t need 6 feet of cord on my countertop.
     
MacNNFamous
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May 7, 2021, 01:32 PM
 
This is why better grinders have a glass container; avoids static issue.
     
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May 7, 2021, 04:17 PM
 
There’s a bunch of little tricks to avoid static issues with almost all grinders. You can probably find them online, but I’ve found just a drop of water makes a noticeable difference.
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ShortcutToMoncton
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May 7, 2021, 04:22 PM
 
Originally Posted by ghporter View Post
Those look nice. Not blingy, not complex, but form and function blended well.

While it’s hard to concretely imagine a coffee maker that is “exotic looking,” I’ve had - and avoided - many designs that went way over the top with options, or were so starkly plain that it felt like you had to have someone guide you through using them for basic coffee.
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May 7, 2021, 04:52 PM
 
The exclusive Marcel Duchamp design?
     
subego  (op)
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May 8, 2021, 04:55 AM
 
Originally Posted by ShortcutToMoncton View Post
There’s a bunch of little tricks to avoid static issues with almost all grinders. You can probably find them online, but I’ve found just a drop of water makes a noticeable difference.
I’ll remember that!

It isn’t that big of a deal, though. I should have added NBD to that, too.

How often did you clean yours?



Edit: second grind I used less, and went a little coarser. Still not quite right, but I think a little better
     
subego  (op)
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May 8, 2021, 02:34 PM
 
Third grind. Bumped it down to 22. Much better. I was worried there for a second.



Edit: and I guess that answers the blade grinder question. Pretty small alterations in grind cause some significant changes in taste.


Edit2: tried 24 and it’s not bad, but a little too light.
( Last edited by subego; May 9, 2021 at 08:01 AM. )
     
ghporter
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May 9, 2021, 10:17 AM
 
Originally Posted by subego View Post
Edit: and I guess that answers the blade grinder question. Pretty small alterations in grind cause some significant changes in taste.
I had thought as much. With my blade grinder I found that a coarser grind made it hard to get the coffee as strong as I wanted. My “too weak” assessment wasn’t as subjective as it might be, though. We have clear glass mugs for coffee, and “weak” is a combination of “not much flavor” and “I can read fine print through this stuff…”

But going a little too far made the grounds turn into a mud-like mass that didn’t drip very well at all. It took a long time for the coffee to drip through, and the grounds stayed “wet” the whole time, which means I didn’t get all the “coffee” out of the grounds.

I have no way to quantify fineness with my grinder, of course, so eyeballing the results, and using the simple grind control on the machine is all we have. That control basically governs how long the grinder runs, which in turn affects how fine the grind is. Using that control, we get fairly consistent results. But since we don’t grind very often, we really, really need to write down the setting that gets us the grind we want.

Glenn -----OTR/L, MOT, Tx
     
subego  (op)
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May 10, 2021, 09:18 AM
 
The timer ups the blade’s game a little. I’ve only encountered the ones where the timing is up to you.

However, I can still see an issue near the end of the grind where the blades can’t get leverage anymore and only ricochet the remaining beans around the grinder. In contrast, unground (or half-ground) beans can’t get past the burr into the collection tray.
     
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May 10, 2021, 10:45 AM
 
     
subego  (op)
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May 10, 2021, 10:52 AM
 
Odd there’s no cone drip listing.
     
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May 10, 2021, 11:15 AM
 
We found that using smaller amounts of beans allowed for more consistent grinding, precisely because of the “beans ricocheting around” thing. Cutting down the load to start allowed the blades to grind all the beans pretty effectively without big chunks and without creating dust.

I’m pretty sure the article ‘Famous posted doesn’t take into account manual cone pour overs - I didn’t actually look up all the referenced equipment though. Using an electric kettle, you can approximate temperature control by simply waiting longer or shorter times between the kettle clicking off and pouring. After that, it’s a matter of getting the grounds wet and keeping them wet enough for good extraction.

There’s some art to how much water you pour into the cone, or rather how much water the grounds can sit in while the water extracts the magic from them. I get acceptable coffee without paying much attention, but when I can really focus on it, I can get some outstanding depth and richness out of my coffee.

Glenn -----OTR/L, MOT, Tx
     
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May 10, 2021, 03:50 PM
 
Originally Posted by ghporter View Post
I’m pretty sure the article ‘Famous posted doesn’t take into account manual cone pour overs...
Cone-shaped Pour-over Brewers...It's listed under both Medium and Medium-Fine grinds.
     
ghporter
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May 10, 2021, 04:54 PM
 
I felt those references were to specific machines. I'll have to reread the article.

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May 10, 2021, 08:23 PM
 
Originally Posted by Thorzdad View Post
The exclusive Marcel Duchamp design?
I don’t know the origin.....but it’s a Technivorm Movcamaster drip coffee maker, one of the better drip machines. I think it’s been around since the 70s. They now come in various colours—matte black looks pretty stellar on the counter.
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ghporter
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May 11, 2021, 12:11 PM
 
Originally Posted by ghporter View Post
I felt those references were to specific machines. I'll have to reread the article.
Those are some fancy names for “a ceramic pour over cone” and “a stainless steel pour over cone.” And the AeroPress is much simpler than I’d expected; it’s a vertical coffee press with an optional cone-like collector. I may look into that some time.

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May 11, 2021, 05:48 PM
 
I got a burr grinder for xmas a few years back, love it.

https://www.google.com/aclk?sa=l&ai=...gQIARBE&adurl=
     
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May 11, 2021, 10:20 PM
 
I just traded my Baratza Virtuouso for a Fellow Ode grinder. Between that and the Moccamaster, I really like my coffee design aesthetic going on now. Endgame for me from a coffee perspective.
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subego  (op)
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May 12, 2021, 06:14 AM
 
Just had someone pimp the ceramic pour over. Tempting.
     
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May 12, 2021, 07:39 AM
 
I would encourage getting a pour over. I have one of the simple, stainless steel cones, and it's the best cup of coffee I ever made. Beans really matter with the pour overs, of course.
     
Laminar
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May 12, 2021, 10:18 AM
 


Me sitting here drinking Donut Shop Nutty Caramel K-cups poured over ice.
     
MacNNFamous
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May 12, 2021, 10:33 AM
 
K cups are garbage for the planet and garbage for coffee, it's literally brewing in a thermoplastic (styrene).
     
Laminar
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May 12, 2021, 02:56 PM
 
     
MacNNFamous
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May 12, 2021, 03:07 PM
 
Hope you like cancer and ruining the environment and paying WAY more per oz for moderately more convenience.

It's cheaper to grind your own. It tastes better. And it's better for the environment.

Don't you have kids? **** their ecosystem, amirite?
     
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May 12, 2021, 04:05 PM
 
     
ghporter
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May 13, 2021, 05:18 PM
 
I’ve been playing with how I time my pour over. I use two Melita cones to make two cups in the morning, and I use their unbleached filters.

I found - for us - a fairly ideal pour rate. I wet the grounds, and when that’s drained through, I pour in water to get the filter about 1/3 full, let it drain, and repeat. At 1/4 full we got lots of flavor, but it was kind of bitter, so I moved up to 1/3 and that was great.

The water goes from 100C or so at the beginning to probably around 95C through this process. How those fancy folks can keep their pour over water at “exactly 96.3C throughout the brew”, I have no idea.

I don’t think I’m a candidate for ceramic cones; I am cautious with ceramics because of my history of “sub optimal coordination.” But stainless may be an option.

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subego  (op)
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May 13, 2021, 05:23 PM
 
Originally Posted by ghporter View Post
How those fancy folks can keep their pour over water at “exactly 96.3C throughout the brew”, I have no idea.
Electric kettle?
     
ghporter
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May 14, 2021, 12:23 PM
 
I use an electric kettle. Once it turns itself off - because the water is boiling - the water starts to cool. In fact, one web page about pour over that I spent some time perusing gave a timetable for how long to wait for the water to get to a specific temperature. Sadly it was based on a specific size kettle…

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subego  (op)
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May 14, 2021, 12:52 PM
 
They have ones that sit at 185°F. The Zojirushi boiler I have for work does that too.

Edit: woops! That’s a little low for coffee, and I guess the kettle I was looking at *doesnt* keep the temp stable.

Edit2: if I remember right, you can jack the temp up on the Zojirushi, but it’s not really right for a pour over I imagine.
     
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May 15, 2021, 01:22 AM
 
My kettle can hold temperature from ~160-212 wherever I set it. No fractional degrees though:
https://fellowproducts.com/products/staggekg

And now to play catch up:

Originally Posted by reader50 View Post
I'm not a coffee person, so not sure if this is an obvious suggestion.

Water usually has a flavor. With city water, it's often a chlorine flavor. Have you tried making coffee with distilled water? See if it gives the flavor more punch, by removing background noise.
Distilled would be worse. No minerals to help extract flavors. Filtered/bottled water is probably the best bet IMO.

Originally Posted by ShortcutToMoncton View Post
Unless they’ve been bought out recently, Baratza was a smaller company out in the PNW somewhere that only makes grinders—pretty specialized..
Sadly they were bought out by Breville a few months back. Makers of overpriced and mostly crap espresso machines and 'smart' grinders. So, we'll see if they ruin them or not.

Originally Posted by ghporter View Post
I know that the two disadvantages inexpensive of blade grinders are that they aren’t as accurate in fineness, and that they can heat the beans and “change the flavor.” But from everything I’ve been able to find online, it looks like the second disadvantage is mostly theoretical. (The “noise problem” isn’t a big deal for us; it’s actually enjoyable to see how the cats react when we start the grinder. )

So has anyone bought a burr grinder and done a head-to-head taste test with the same beans?

I’ll admit that at times I have subsisted on Folgers office coffee, “industrial” food service coffee, and other lesser potations. But (to quote David Lynch) to me, “even a bad cup of coffee is better than no coffee at all.”

I like good coffee, and some of the best I can find locally seems best bought as beans and savored as a treat, rather than used for daily caffeination. But my little blade grinder (with small loads) seems to do a fine job without notable heat build up.
I could tell the difference between my blade grinder and my Encore. And I can tell the difference between my Encore and my local cafe's $3500 Mahlkonig.

Originally Posted by subego View Post
The one thing which mildly bugs me is there’s no place to shove extra cord. I don’t need 6 feet of cord on my countertop.
This is why my next grinder will likely be a high-end hand grinder. About $200 and comparable to the $500-700 electric grinders. I only make coffee for myself, and my wife doesn't like having things out on the counters, so it'll likely be less of a PITA to hand grind vs pull out, plug in, clean, wrap cord back around base and put away like I do currently with my Encore.

Originally Posted by ShortcutToMoncton View Post
There’s a bunch of little tricks to avoid static issues with almost all grinders. You can probably find them online, but I’ve found just a drop of water makes a noticeable difference.
If you search for "ross distribution technique" it's a thing now. The current 'neato' method is to get a small spray bottle.


I just picked up some green (unroasted) coffee from Yemen. They're supposed to be super weird compared to most of the African/Latin American stuff usually served. I'm excited. Supposedly drinks like a Pinot Noir.

I've been dialing in my V60 process the past year doing the whole WFH thing. I've gotten pretty good... to the point I think I'm outgrowing my equipment. Need a better grinder (see above) and a better scale (faster readout and .01g sensitivity). Might get one of those fancy Acaia scales with real-time flow rate, the last variable I've to master. Weight, time, water temp are far easier.
     
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May 15, 2021, 08:07 AM
 
Nice.

I hope Baratza does alright—they are a pretty cool story.

I was also going to mention the Fellow kettle.....most of the hardcore pour over folks seem to strongly prefer the gooseneck kettles that give slow and even water flow and have temp holds.

Since you have the Fellow kettle—have you considered their Ode grinder? I just recently got one and it’s pretty fast, quiet, small and convenient. You might need to spend more for their upgraded burrs if you’re looking at light roast V10 pours though. I now have a little corner coffee station so I don’t need to put it away or anything, but that was only possible because (unlike the Baratza Virtuouso or Encore) it gets high wife approval being out on display.

I had a hand grinder before I downsized to the Nespresso four or five years ago. I tend to feel they’re more of a lone-wolf solution as you described. If you’re grinding for yourself and have a couple extra minutes, then sure. But I ended up keeping the Encore around when friends and family came over, and I also started reaching for it more when I was just a bit lazy. Look I’m a manual guy for simple processes—I refuse to open a bottle of wine with anything but a corkscrew —but I tell you, it’s hard to beat just dumping a handful of beans in this Ode and having them ready to go like 10-20 seconds later.
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subego  (op)
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May 15, 2021, 10:40 AM
 
I go manual with corks, but use one of these.

     
ShortcutToMoncton
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May 18, 2021, 08:22 PM
 
Nope I’m a simple corkscrew and Archimedes purist...take your fancy weak-kneed city tricks elsewhere good sir
Mankind's only chance is to harness the power of stupid.
     
 
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