If you’re like me, you prefer to make your own coffee in the morning rather than wait in line at Starbucks. With many coffee grinders, though, the grain is either too fine or too coarse, affecting the brew’s flavor. If my coffee isn’t right, neither is my morning. The Baratza Encore Conical Burr Coffee Grinder is one of a few quality coffee grinders that can improve your brew.
Features & Benefits
Here, I’ll go over the specific features and benefits that the Baratza Encore provides.
Grind Size and Consistency
The main promise of the Baratza Encore is consistent grind size. When I gave the product a whirl, not only did I find that the grind size was perfect almost every time, but that the size variations were also spot on.
>> Also read: Cuisinart Coffee Grinder Review
However, the grinder is not the best for espresso. Espresso grounds need to be especially fine, and the Baratza Encore is better purposed for a larger, coarser consistency. You can still make espresso, but it will take its toll on the machine in the long run.
The Encore grinds coffee beans at a low speed, which, as I mentioned before, is ideal for most machines. It reduces the amount of heat the beans are exposed to before brewing and also makes for a better consistency throughout.
Despite the benefit, you may find that the Encore is a bit slow for your liking. Although the taste may be better, it isn’t the best machine for a quick, grab ‘n go cup of morning joe.
Ease of Use/Cleaning
This machine is very easy to use, and you’ll get the hang of it in a matter of minutes, even if you’re a complete novice.
In terms of cleaning, the hopper tends to get statically charged after brewing. This can make a mess when you remove it, and the leftover grinds start to fly around. However, cleaning is much harder beyond that.
Durability and Repairability
The parts are high-quality, but the manufacturer doesn’t give you a hard time when you need to repair them. You can replace parts on the cheap or even covered by warranty if you have one.
Alternative Coffee Grinders
If you’re looking to explore your options, these are great alternatives to the Baratza Encore.
Another conical burr coffee grinder, the Capresso Infinity is a direct competitor to the Baratza Encore. It’s also quite easy to use and produces consistent grind quality as well.
>> Read our full Capresso Infinity Burr Grinder Review here
Despite their similarities, the Capresso Infinity comes with a time dial. You can better control how long you want to grind your beans for, whereas the Baratza Encore has a simple on/off switch.
However, this machine does tend to heat up more quickly than others. This can affect your coffee’s flavor, and often people prefer the Baratza Encore because of this reason.
If you’re in the market for something cheaper than the Baratza Encore, then the Cuisinart DBM-8 is a decent option. It sells for a quarter of the price of the Encore. However, you can expect the coffee grinds to be far less consistent. Also, it does heat up more and affects the flavor and intensity of the resulting coffee.
Despite its drawbacks, the DBM-8 is still a great choice for those looking for a below-entry level coffee grinder to maybe give as a gift or to start appreciating home grinds. Consider this model as a training wheels option to a higher-quality machine like the Baratza Encore.
In the middle of the pack is the Bodum Bistro Burr Coffee Grinder, a good product that produces a high-quality, consistent grind. It’s cheaper than the Baratza Encore but doesn’t sacrifice quality as much as the DBM-8.
However, that doesn’t mean there aren’t drawbacks. You’ll find that the Bodum Bistro is much noisier than the Encore and also heats up more as well. It runs at a higher speed, meaning your coffee grounds may lose some of their flavors or become burnt.
Things to Consider Before Buying a Coffee Grinder
If you set a high standard for coffee and like to make your own in the morning, then buying a coffee grinder is a wise choice. A coffee grinder’s features and manufacturing quality will determine the quality of your coffee grounds.
Finding out specifics about the following features can help make your choice for a coffee grinder a bit easier:
- Flat vs. Conical Grinders
- Particle Size and Consistency
- Grinding Heat
- Grinder Size
- Coffee Bean Capacity
- Ease of Use
- Difficulty to Clean
- Parts Durability
Comparing these coffee grinder characteristics will almost guarantee you make a well-informed purchase.
If you’re looking for a better coffee grinder than the one you already have, or you’re interested in starting to grind your own coffee, the Baratza Encore is a fantastic option. It’s grind quality and consistency, durability, and ease of use justifies its top position on many coffee grinder lists.
Click here to check out the product and find out for yourself how good your coffee can be.