Coffee – without our daily cups, we’d never be able to keep up with the demands of our lives: the kids, the commutes, work, social and household obligations… In fact, it’s fairly safe to say that without coffee, Western civilization wouldn’t exist. In his incredibly interesting book The Devil’s Cup, Stewart Lee Allen hypothesizes that the Renaissance in Western Europe blossomed thanks to the availability of coffee from the Middle East and North Africa – replacing the beer and wine fuzzy-minded, perpetually-hung-over Medieval Europeans swilled all day long. Sounds legit, doesn’t it?
Regardless, we know our household would collapse in approximately six hours without coffee.
We don’t just want the caffeine, though – we want good coffee (don’t you?). We grind a batch of beans before every pot. If you haven’t done this for yourself, believe me – NOTHING compares to the smell of fresh-ground beans! My mouth waters just thinking about it. The whole coffee experience starts when I open the ceramic crock where we keep the beans. I grind them, unleashing an almost overwhelming symphony of scents…
The only down side? The electric coffee grinder sounds like a 747 engine trying to fly through a truck load of gravel. Seriously – when the kids were newborns, we had to switch to pre-ground coffee lest the stupid grinder blast them awake. Seems rather trivial now. At the time, though, I wanted my coffee even more than I wanted sleep.
Here’s an even worse scenario: electricity knocked out by a storm. Seriously, the last time this happened, I spent twenty minutes with a handkerchief and a ball-peen hammer so I could boil water on a camp stove for my morning fix. Result: not as bad as you’d think (though I did have a few stray threads floating on the top of my first cup), and not somethingI EVER want to do again.
Just a few reasons we were so excited to receive our JavaPresse manual coffee grinder. Takes me about 3 1/2 minutes to grind enough beans for a full (12-cup) pot of fresh, rich, delicious coffee. Over time, I’ve found the grinding process to be an energizing part of my morning coffee ritual. This grinder has an adjustment knob that controls the fineness of the finished coffee. JavaPresse’s recommendations:
Turn the adjustment knob all the way to the right. Each number below represents a “click” to the left.
- Coarse: 13-18
- Medium Coarse: 10-12
- Medium: 7-9
- Medium Fine: 4-6
- Extra Fine: 1-3
(For what it’s worth, we use a medium fine five-click grind for our ancient Mr. Coffee drop pot – MUCH more flavorful than a coarse grind, and I don’t mind the silty residue that settles on the bottom of my cup or the pot.)
This manual grinder uses ceramic, rather than stainless steel, burrs, which last five times longer and don’t need sharpening.
The JavaPresse is compact and small enough to tuck into your backpack for hiking and camping. Believe me – campfire coffee has NEVER tasted this good before!
And don’t forget, every time you grind your own coffee, you’re saving a smidge of electricity and burning off a few dozen calories.
Check out the JavaPresse and see for yourself how much better your morning coffee can be!