Any coffee nerd will tell you: if you want to improve your java, improve your grind. Regardless of your preferred brew method, freshness is crucial; as soon as the beans are ground, it’s a race against the clock as the increased exposure to air causes the coffee to begin a rapid, precipitous decline in quality. If you keep a dedicated coffee grinder in the kitchen, this is a no-brainer, but there’s no need to compromise even when you’re on the road. The Porlex Mini Mill gives you control over your coffee no matter where you happen to be.
The Porlex is a hand grinder, made in Japan, with all ceramic burrs that are near-diamond-hard and built to last (look also for Hario, another Japanese brand of ceramic burr hand grinders). Sweet Maria’s, an online shop and comprehensive coffee resource, describes it like this:
“I think the grind quality is good, on par or slightly better than the Hario mills with ceramic burrs. It creates a little more “fines” than the Zassenhaus Turkish Mill. The handle is longer than the Hario mills which makes a big difference; it gives a lot more leverage in grinding so it is less of a workout. It just has better ergonomics and a better knob to grip too. I ground 22 grams of coffee in 50 seconds with the Porlex, and it took 30 seconds longer in the comparable Hario – not a huge difference but the burrs seems to pull in the beans better and faster.”
The Porlex is a perfect traveler’s companion, with the capacity to grind enough beans for 1-2 cups at a time. As pictured above, remove the rubber handle holder and it even fits right inside an Aeropress for space-saving ease in packing. Throw in a bag of beans and, for the sake of precision, a $20 digital food scale to weigh them out, and you have the makings of a world-class portable cafe — just add water.
[Images: Sweet Maria’s]