The Best Custom Grind: Putting Burr Coffee Grinder Ratings to the Test

For many coffee buffs, the search for the perfectly ground coffee is a little like the quest for the Holy Grail: treacherous, exhausting, and demoralizing at times—but so worth the effort. Many have found their journey’s end with a conical burr coffee grinder, which allows for a much more customized blend than your run-of-the-mill one-setting coffee grinder.

But for those on the hunt for a new one, sludging through piles of burr coffee grinder ratings can be more than a little tedious. With more and more products hitting the market than ever, we decided to take a little guesswork out of your search by narrowing the field down to two solid picks. Read on for our conical burr coffee grinder review of the Breville BCG800XL Smart Grinder and the Bodum Bistro Electric Burr Coffee Grinder.

Brew of the Moment’s Homegrown Conical Burr Coffee Grinder Review

Breville BCG800XL Smart Grinder

Breville BCG800XL Smart Grinder

First up, we have the Breville BCG800XL Smart Grinder ($250). With 25 brew settings from extra fine to extra coarse (and every possibility in between), this puppy grinds up beans for brew press, percolator, and French press coffee.

So let’s talk features. The Breville’s air-tight bean hopper allows for easy removal, storage, and transfer of coffee, while a backlit LCD screen shows each grind setting and amount. An auto-dosing system calibrates each and every grind amount to your spec, so you can kiss those measuring spoons goodbye. It’s also outfitted with two portafilter cradles, a glass grind container, and a conical burr cleaning brush. And as far as countertop space, it doesn’t take up too much real estate widthwise (six by eight inches). But coffee lovers with low-hanging cabinets should note that it’s a bit taller than competitors, ringing in just shy of 16 inches tall.

All in all, you can definitely expect smoothly, consistently ground beans and zero clumping from this appliance. Another perk: it’s much quieter than the usual noisy suspects.

Bodum Bistro Electric Burr Coffee Grinder

Bodum Bistro Electric Burr Coffee Grinder

And in the other court, we’ve got the Bodum Bistro Electric Burr Coffee Grinder ($134). This is a more basic model, but one that still performs very well in burr coffee grinder ratings and that outperforms other lower-priced models.

The Bodum is user-friendly, but with fewer bells and whistles than the pricier Breville. It has 14 different grind settings and a timed grinding feature. Instead of featuring an LCD screen for settings control, the Bodum opts for a more old-school technique: just twist the upper bean container to the desired setting. It’s also no giant—you’ll just need a seven-by-seven spot and a little over a foot for height clearance.

Another perk you won’t find in most burr grinders: the Bodum comes in your choice of black, orange, red, white, and green.

And the verdict is…

Both burr grinders are sound bets, depending on where you are in your quest for the perfect coffee grounds. Entry-level coffee aficionados would do well with the Bodum burr grinder—a giant step up from one-grind-fits-all blenders. But for more discerning coffee drinkers, the fact that the Breville can grind at almost twice as many settings as the Bodum may be worth the extra money.

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