What is a Single Dose Grinder?

What is a Single Dose Grinder?

As specialty coffee has become an increasingly popular hobby for home coffee enthusiasts, new tools and equipment has come to the market to better suit the needs and solve the problems of lower volume home coffee production. One piece of equipment that has changed the game for home espresso aficionados is low-retention, single-dose grinders. Before the dawn of these grinders, coffee lovers were filling the hoppers of commercial grade espresso equipment, letting their beans grow stale over time, and struggling to dial in their new bag because they couldn’t adjust the grind finer without the machine running and wasting beans.

Many who were committed to the craft saw these problems and began to look for solutions. Some modified their Mazzer Minis or Eureka Mignon grinder with bellows, different grind chutes, or bases to tilt the grinder forward to reduce retention and convert their equipment into a more single dose friendly set up. Eventually, the market responded as new companies began to emerge releasing new products specifically focused on home specialty coffee brewing.

The most notable, early player on the market for this style of grinder was the Niche Zero. As this style of grinder grew in popularity, the DF64 came to market and made waves after being dubbed my none other than James Hoffman as potentially the “Niche Killer”.

For the price and build quality, nothing beats the DF64. It is robust, well crafted and meets and solves the problems that have plagued home users for ages. With a 64 mm burr base, the DF64 shared burrs with many existing grinders on the market including commercial grinders such as the Mazzer Super Jolly. Since 64 mm burrs were so popular there remains a large variety of aftermarket burr options to upgrade and experiment with different burr profiles to achieve a diversity of grind particle size distributions including the famed SSP burr line up.

The main thing to recognize is that Single Dose Grinding will require slight changes to your workflow, but Ultra-Low Retention and excellent build quality enables you to achieve consistent results in the cup. Here are a list of benefits that single dose grinding provides:

  1. Smaller Footprint: Equipment geared towards home coffee brewing are purpose built and seek to solve the problems which home users face as efficiently as possible. This leads to equipment that is well sized and suited to the space in your home kitchen, and to your specific coffee needs.
  2. Minimized Oxidation: Grinding coffee beans exposes them to oxygen, which can degrade their flavor and aroma over time. By grinding only what you need for each shot, you minimize the exposure of the coffee to oxygen, preserving its freshness and ensuring a better-tasting espresso.
  3. Customization: Single-dose grinding allows for greater flexibility and customization in your espresso brewing process. You can easily adjust the grind size and dose with each individual shot according to your preferences or the specific characteristics of the coffee beans you're using, leading to a more tailored and consistent espresso experience.
  4. Reduced Waste: Storing pre-ground coffee in a hopper can lead to waste, as the coffee can become stale or lose its freshness over time. With single-dose grinding, you only grind as much coffee as you need for each shot, reducing waste and ensuring that every shot is as fresh as possible.
  5. Experimentation: Single-dose grinding also enables espresso enthusiasts to experiment more easily with different coffee beans, grind sizes, and brewing parameters. Since you're only grinding a small amount of coffee at a time, it's easier to make adjustments and fine-tune your espresso recipe to achieve the perfect balance of flavor and extraction.

Overall, single-dose espresso grinding offers greater control, freshness, and flexibility in the home espresso brewing process, resulting in a higher-quality espresso shot.

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