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Jan 7, 2012 10:45 AM

Alternative to coffee bean GRINDER?

Anyone know where I can find an alternative to a coffee bean GRINDER? Something to crush the beans instead of grind them?

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  1. A mortar and pestle is used in the middle east. The crush won't be as fine as a grind, but good for Turkish coffee.

    8 Replies
    1. re: jayt90

      I was hoping to avoid using a mortar and pestle, but I guess that will have to do. I use a french press, so I don't need a fine grind. Thanks!

      1. re: emcclory

        I use a french press too and my burr coffee grinder has settings from fine to coarse. Does your grinder not?

        1. re: Flexitarian

          I'm not looking to GRIND... more to crush. Apparently crushing beans gets better flavour...

          1. re: emcclory

            Hmmm didn't know that. How about just putting the beans in a cloth bag, tying the bag closed and taking a hammer to the bag? I might try that to test out your theory on the beans I roast at home in my drum roaster.

            1. re: emcclory

              Burr grinders work by crushing the beans, and they are preferred because they don't heat up the beans. And that is what gives you the better flavour you are looking for.

              1. re: emcclory

                "I'm not looking to GRIND... more to crush. Apparently crushing beans gets better flavour..."

                I think we're suffering from poor terminology.

                By grinding, I believe you're referring to a blade grinder which pulverizes, lot's of dust and very uneven. By crushing, I think what you want is a coarse, even grind for french press which a decent burr grinder can deliver. I dislike the word grind, because the better burr grinders actually 'SLICE' the beans and very, very, evenly.

                Edit: Crush is an unknown term in the coffee world of today.

                1. re: rosetown

                  To add to rosetown's comments, I've worked a bit with the folks over at Versalab. Their grinder uses both conical AND flat burrs, & they told me the conical burrs do the crushing, while the flat burrs do the slicing.

                2. re: emcclory

                  What you want is a burr grinder. Not sure where you got the "crushing' info, but it more or less operates like a flour mill, I guess that could be considered "crushing" the beans. Actually crushing the beans, ala mortar and pestle, really isn't going to work at all. A consistent grind size is extremely critical to extraction and a good brew, which is what a burr grinder achieves compared to a whirly-blade grinder. Grinds of inconsistent size results in the larger grinds being underextracted and the smaller ones being overextracted (bitter).

          2. So in summation 'emcclory'

            We have general agreement:
            You need a burr grinder of sufficient quality to deliver delicious french press coffee.
            When you reply, a suitable grinder can be recommended. I'm not in the know of a suitable grinder for french press ,but many are.