Last Updated: 2/10/20

The Best ​​​Manual Coffee Grinder

JavaPresse Grinder

​Top Rated Overall​​​

javapresse manual grinder

Hario Manual Grinder

​Best Bang For Your Buck​​​

hario manual grinder

ROK Coffee Grinder

For the Aficianado

ROK coffee grinder

JavaPresse Grinder

javapresse manual grinder
  • Stainless steel
  • Ceramic burrs
  • Free coffee voucher

Hario Manual

hario manual grinder
  • Large hopper
  • Great with Aeropress
  • Portable size

​ROK Grinder

ROK coffee grinder
  • Superior grind
  • High quality build
  • Undisputed best

Despite the availability of sophisticated electrical grinders and coffee machines that do all the work for you, manual grinders remain wildly popular among coffee drinkers. Aside from the fact that they are quite simply just fun and rewarding to use, they are also some of the best quality grinders out there. Good manual grinders can outperform most electrical grinders in terms of uniformity, and they also give the user a lot more control over their grind. That being said, there are things you need to look out when choosing a quality manual grinder. Everything from the burrs to the ergonomics will make a significant difference in the quality and user experience. There are many reasons to use a manual grinder, so we’ve compiled a list of our favourite hand grinders and who they’re best suited for. 

Choosing the Best Manual Coffee Grinder

What’s the point of using a manual grinder when there are plenty of electric grinders that will do the hard work for you? There are actually a lot of advantages to a manual grinder. For starters, a good hand grinder is a lot of fun to use. Many people enjoy the process, and the control you get over your grind. They can be very playful, and often will produce a more uniform grind. Hand grinders are also perfect for transporting around. They are typically quite small, easy to use, and don’t need to be plugged in. There is also an undeniably charming component to grinding your own coffee. The sounds and motions of hand grinding satisfying and rewarding in a way that you just won’t get with an electric grinder. But don’t take our word for it! Check our list of the best hand coffee grinders and find out for yourself. 

javapresse manual grinder
 Why We Love It

It's durable, easy to use and easy on the wallet

Who Should Buy This

Anyone looking for a basic burr grinder that won't sacrifice quality

The JavaPresse is one of the most popular burr grinders on the market because it covers all the basics and comes at a great price. It has adjustable grind settings, a removable crank, and high quality ceramic combo burrs. Ceramic burrs produce more uniform grind, which will result in a better tasting cup of coffee. The body is made of durable stainless steel, meaning this will last. Its compact size is great for portability, but it means it can be quite slow to grind. If you like a fast cup in the morning, this might not be the best grinder for you. Similarly, it is limited to grinding only one single serve portion at a time. On the flip side, the JavaPresse comes with a free coffee voucher code with every purchase. Overall, if you’re looking for a solid hand grinder at a good price, the JavaPresse can’t be beat. 

Pros:

  • Free coffee voucher with purchase
  • High quality ceramic burrs
  • Stainless steel body
  • Removable crank
  • Compact size

Cons:

  • Slow grinding
  • Made for single servings

#​2

Hario MSS
Bang for Your Buck

hario manual grinder
 Why We Love It

Good consistency and ergonomics at affordable price

Who Should Buy This

Those looking for a higher capacity and quality without breaking the bank. And, those using an Aeropress.

This Hario grinder is perfect if you’re looking to upgrade your grinder game without spending too much cash. While hand grinders are more labour intensive than the standard electric grinder, they are universally better in terms of higher quality grind and coffee flavour. When it comes to bang for your buck, the Hario is hard to beat. It comes in plastic or stainless steel, and has a silicon seal for keeping your coffee beans fresh longer in the hopper. It also has ceramic conical burrs, held in place by a spring that improves control and consistency in grind quality. For all the Aeropress lovers out there - size wise, it works really well in conjunction with that coffee maker. If you’re on the market for premium quality grind, you might find the Hario produces somewhat muddy coffee in the finer grinds. But if you want a high quality hand grinder at a great price, this is the grinder for you. 

Pros:

  • Fits 40-50g of coffee in hopper
  • Quality materials
  • Great value
  • Portable size
  • Great with Aeropress

Cons:

  • Slightly less consistency in smaller grind sizes
  • Best for single serve

#​3

ROK Coffee Grinder
Premium Grinder

ROK coffee grinder
 Why We Love It

Superior grind, uniform results

Who Should Buy This

Coffee aficionados looking for the highest quality manual grinder

This is a grinder for the true coffee lovers out there. It’s heftier than the other grinders on this list, but with its larger size comes more efficient and uniform grind quality. One of our favourite things about the ROK is the vertical cranking handle. This makes it easier to grind and gives you more leverage and control while grinding the beans. The ROK has both infinite and stepped grinding options ranging from extra fine to coarse, and you can switch between the two by removing the washers above the adjusting ring. It comes with steel conical burrs, though you can opt for the ceramic burr model (which we highly recommend). Not only is the ROK a high performance grinder, it also looks great. It’s not designed to be a compact, on-the-go grinder, but rather a sophisticated looking machine that draws the eye. It also comes with a super-tak sticky bottom to keep in place. This is a nice feature if you have a designated grinder spot, but a bit of a pain if you want to move it around. Overall, the ROK is a great looking grinder, and its premium price tag is justified by its satisfying ergonomics, quality build, and fantastic grind quality which gives you that perfect cup of coffee.

Pros:

  • Vertical crank handle
  • Unparalleled Uniformity
  • Stepped or unstepped settings
  • Sophisticated aesthetics
  • Quality materials and ergonomics

Cons:

  • Takes up counter space

#​4

Porlex JP-30
Most Portable

Porlex manual grinder
 Why We Love It

It strikes the perfect balance between compatibility and durability 

Who Should Buy This

Those who want a great on-the-go grinder for camping, traveling, etc.

As far as portable grinders go, the Porlex JP-30 is a true soldier. It’s small enough to bring on any journey, and ultra durable so you don’t have to worry about babying it. Made with a stainless steel body and handle, the JP-30 can withstand the outdoors and rough journeys, all while keeping up with your coffee needs. It has 12 grind settings, giving you options ranging from espresso to french press style coffee. It holds 30 grams of coffee beans and requires some patience if you hope to brew for more than one person. It has ceramic conical burrs, which are ideal for making a more uniform grind. You won’t find the same level of uniformity in your grind as you would with a premium model, but it certainly outperforms any blade grinder. Overall, this is a super affordable, compact, durable, grinder with impressive grinding performance that’s ideal for the on-the-go coffee drinker.

Pros:

  • Portable
  • Durable
  • Affordable
  • Great quality for price

Cons:

  • Single servings only

#​5

HandGround Precision Mill
​Update: NOT RECOMMENDED

Handground precision mill
 Why We Love It

Great for on-the-go, or at home

Who Should Buy This

Those who want a grinder that offers a little bit of everything

​Update: As of Feb 05 we do NOT recommend purchasing this grinder. Originally, we really liked the handground precision coffee mill. If you're doing pour over, french press, or espresso, it gives you a TON of control over your grind size. After two months of owning it (and let's be honest, we have over 10 different grinders at home that we bough to review, so ​while it was one of my personal favorites it's not like I was using this more than once per week) it broke. The issue was in the top cap. One of the internal gears that connects the hand crank to the chuck (the piece that actually moves the grinding rod) is either slipping or worn down. It spins freely with the cap off, but as soon as you put any pressure on it the handle just slips. You can feel it trying to grab, but it's useless to us at this point. Fortunately they DO have warranty and are going to ship us out a replacement part free of charge, and i've reached out to several online retailers to see if they've had any issues. If this is just bad luck and we happened to get a lemon, we'll probably recommend this grinder again. But until we can confirm that these are generally reliable and most people aren't having issues with them we're recommending that you do not purchase this.

Pros:

  • Hopper holds up to 100g 
  • Great compact size
  • Quality materials & ergonomics

Cons:

  • Not ideal for large amounts of coffee
  • Less durable than some all-metal options

#​6

Zassenhaus Santiago Coffee Mill
The Unique Option

zassenhaus santiago mill
 Why We Love It

It's a conversation starter, looks amazing and is fun and easy to use

Who Should Buy This

Anyone who wants a unique grinder for the sake of aesthetics and charm

We’ll be the first to admit that Zassenhaus Santiago is largely on this list because of its unique appearance. It is, frankly, one of the most aesthetically pleasing hand grinders you’re likely to find, and comes in an array of styles including mahogany and natural varnish beech wood. Everything from the regal Zassenhaus logo to the impossibly charming coffee grind drawer will leave you longing to add this little gem to your coffee arsonal. Looks aside, the Zassenhaus is also fun to use and actually makes a pretty consistent grind. The hardened steel burrs won’t give you the same impeccable consistency as some premium ceramic burrs, but the Zassenhaus is still capable of brewing a bold and flavourful cup of joe. It can be a bit tricky to clean and isn’t the most ergonomic in terms of positioning, but somehow these factors seem less relevant while your grinding away on this delightful machine. It’s a grinder built of both looks and substance, and comes with a 25 year warranty to back it up. 

Pros:

  • Unique, charming design
  • Fun to use, collectors item
  • Quality built materials
  • Reasonably consistent grind
  • 25 year warranty

Cons:

  • Limited grind capacity
  • Lower quality burrs (not ceramic)
  • Tricky to clean

Which Grinder is Right For Me?

There is no one “best” grinder out there, and choosing the right one for you is all about deciding what you want from your grinder in the first place. As we’ve discussed, the benefits of a manual grinder are plenty. They’re compact, easy to use, and result in a significantly more uniform grind than traditional blade grinders. Better yet, they are often cheaper than electric blade grinder as well. There’s a huge selection of manual grinders out there, each with their own set of advantages. Here, we’ll break down which grinder is right for you.

JavaPresse Manual Grinder: If cost is your number one priority. 

If you want a manual grinder but are set on spending as little as possible, the JavaPresse is our recommendation. Despite its highly competitive pricing, JavaPresse doesn’t cut corners with this grinder. It has quality ceramic burrs, a durable stainless steel body, and produces uniform grind in 18+ different coarseness settings. At the end of the day, manual grinders at this price don’t get much better than the JavaPresse. 

Hario MSS-1DTB: If you want the most bang for your buck. 

If there’s a bit of wiggle-room in your budget, the Hario MSS-1DTB won’t leave you disappointed. It boasts many of the same benefits as the JavaPresse, but comes with a few extra features that really give you the bang for your buck, including a burr stabilizing plate which improves the ergonomics and grind accuracy. It’s a sturdier and smoother feeling grinder, and you can choose from a variety of models and colours. To get the most out of your dollar, we suggest the Hario MSS-1DTB. 

ROK Coffee Grinder: If you want the best grind quality.  

If you’re ranking grinders in terms of overall performance and grind quality, the ROK Coffee Grinder is our top choice. Built with high quality materials and designed to minimize the number of crank rotations for a given amount of grinds, this high end grinder is an absolute pleasure to use. One of it’s best features is the vertical grind crank, giving you greater control and consistency. This grinder is ideal for anyone who wants more options, more control, and overall higher quality coffee grinds. 

Porlex JP-30: If you want something durable and compact. 

If you’re looking for a grinder that can keep up with an on-the-go lifestyle, the Porlex JP-30 come s strongly recommended. This grinder is made with stainless steel and durable materials so that it can withstand all your adventures. It’s ultra compact size makes it best for single-serve coffee, but perfect for hauling around easily. So if durability and compactibility are your criteria, we suggest the Porlex JP-30.

Handground Precision Mill: Most Diverse 

The Handground Precision Mill makes our list for offering a little bit of everything. If you’re not too sure what you want, or are looking for a grinder that can be used in almost any setting, look no further than the Handground Precision Mill. It’s durable and compact but grinds higher quantities that most compact grinders. It has impressive grind uniformity and is a great price for the quality you get. For diversity fans, we recommend the Handground Precision Mill. 

Zassenhaus Santiago: The Retro Option

The Zassenhaus is on our list for the aesthetic design lovers out there. It doesn’t produce the same quality of grind as the others on our list, but still outperforms any blade grinders. It comes in a variety of finished wood designs and looks great in any kitchen. If you’re looking for a charming grinder to fulfill the artisan in you, you’ll love the Zassenhaus Santiago. 

5 Things to Look for in a Manual Grinder

Choosing the Best Manual Coffee Grinder of 2020 1
  1. Conical Burrs 

The most important aspect of a quality grinder is the burrs. Burrs outperform blades because it is much more difficult to get a uniform grind. Any burrs are better than blades, and conical burrs give you more control and greater consistency for an overall better tasting coffee. The advantage of ceramic burrs over stainless steel burrs is that they are more durable, longer lasting, and static-free so the grinds don’t stick. If nothing else, choose a grinder based on the burrs. 

  1. Quality Grinding Mechanism for Efficiency

A manual grinder comes with a lot of moving parts, and the higher quality the mechanisms, the more long lasting your grinder will be. Properly designed grinding mechanisms will also produce a more uniform grind and give you more control over the size and quantity. There’s also something to be said for the satisfaction of the grinding motion itself. The smoother the grind and more satisfying the sound, the better the grinding experience. 

  1. Adequate Size

Manual grinders are generally much smaller than other grinders. Because of their size and the extra labour required to produce more grind, you’ll want to consider whether a manual grinder is the right choice for your coffee needs. Manual grinders are excellent for small pots of coffee or single serve, but unless you’re willing to be patient and really work for your coffee, they’re not ideal for larger groups. Many models come in a variety of sizes, so always check the grinder capacity before you commit.

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  1. Ergonomics 

Because of the manual labour required with a hand grinder, ergonomics go a really long way. You’ll quickly tire of your grinder if it’s not satisfying to hold and grind. It can be tricky to properly judge the ergonomics of a grinder without physically holding it, but if in doubt, you can tell a lot from the design and materials. 

  1. Design (grind adjustment, stabilizing point {loading}, 

The design of the grinder goes hand in hand with the overall ergonomics. Factors like the design of the grind adjuster, the position and structure of the grind crank, and the location of the stabilizing point will all make a difference. For example, a high stabilizing point can make it difficult to load beans into the grinder without spilling. A poorly designed hand grinder is a lot more frustrating than it is enjoyable to use.

Choosing the Best Manual Coffee Grinder of 2020 2
Choosing the Best Manual Coffee Grinder of 2020
Choosing the Best Manual Coffee Grinder of 2020 3

Last Updated: 2/10/20 The Best ​​​Manual Coffee Grinder JavaPresse Grinder ​​​Top Rated Overall​​​ Hario Manual Grinder ​​​Best Bang For Your Buck​​​ ROK C

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