HomeRoast Digest


Topic: The Fetishism of the Commodity, aka "Better than Thou" attitude (57 msgs / 1221 lines)
1) From: jim gundlach
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As one who advocates getting the best grinder you can, I resent the  
assertion that those of us who make such recommendations do so  
because of a "better than thou" attitude.  In fact, I feel that those  
afflicted by the fetishism of the commodity, the view that your worth  
is reflected in what you own, are rather foolish puppets of the  
advertising industry.  No, I recommend the best grinder because of  
all the things I have tried to improve coffee, the first thing after  
home roasting and getting great greens from Tom, is getting a good  
grinder.  I have had about a dozen bad grinders and I own three good  
ones.  I feel the purpose of this list is to share experiences.  If  
you look back through the archives of this list, you will see several  
accounts by people who finally try a good grinder and discover what  
us "grinder nuts" have been talking about.   I am into good home  
roasted coffee because it tastes good, even great and fantastic at  
times.  My experience tells me that if you take a good home roasted  
coffee and run it through a bad grinder, you are throwing away much  
of the flavor that makes home roasting worthwhile.  Moving up to a RK  
drum or one of the other roasters that cost about as much as a Rocky  
or a Mazzer Mini will make roasting more convenient but will not give  
you better coffee than a hot air popcorn popper, a wok, or a heatgun/ 
dogbowl.  Spending the money on the grinder will.
       pecan jim
On Sep 3, 2007, at 9:44 PM, raymanowen wrote:
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As one who advocates getting the =
best grinder you can, I resent the assertion that those of us who make =
such recommendations do so because of a "better than thou" attitude.  =
In fact, I feel that those afflicted by the fetishism of the =
commodity, the view that your worth is reflected in what you own, are =
rather foolish puppets of the advertising industry.  No, I =
recommend the best grinder because of all the things I have tried to =
improve coffee, the first thing after home roasting and getting great =
greens from Tom, is getting a good grinder.  I have had about a dozen =
bad grinders and I own three good ones.  I feel the purpose of this =
list is to share experiences.  If you look back through the archives =
of this list, you will see several accounts by people who finally try a =
good grinder and discover what us "grinder nuts" have been talking =
about.   I am into good home roasted coffee because it tastes good, =
even great and fantastic at times.  My experience tells me that if you =
take a good home roasted coffee and run it through a bad grinder, you =
are throwing away much of the flavor that makes home roasting =
worthwhile.  Moving up to a RK drum or one of the other roasters that =
cost about as much as a Rocky or a Mazzer Mini will make roasting more =
convenient but will not give you better coffee than a hot air popcorn =
popper, a wok, or a heatgun/dogbowl.  Spending the money on the =
grinder will.        pecan jim
On Sep 3, =
2007, at 9:44 PM, raymanowen =
wrote:

Contrary = to information and conjecture that may have appeared on this

=

list at other times, there = is no necessity to purchase the best

grinder you can find. Some posters = advocating such have earned a

"Better Than Thou" moniker, but don't be fooled!

= = --Apple-Mail-2-122492427--

2) From: Joseph Robertson
I just want to chime in and thank you Jim for this comment. After attending
the SCAA 2007 convention and taking some training it became very apparent
that the professional community agrees with you.
JoeR
On 9/3/07, jim gundlach  wrote:
<Snip>

3) From: Justin Marquez
"You don't always get what you pay for, but you always pay for what you
get."
Safe Journeys and Sweet Music
Justin Marquez (CYPRESS, TX)
On 9/4/07, jim gundlach  wrote:
<Snip>

4) From: Les
So, what you are saying Alchemist John, is the $38.50 I spent for my
Mazzer Major  too much?  :>)  The other side is you don't have to buy
something brand new.  I bought a Super Jolly and refurbished it, sold
it for a bit more than I paid for it as I didn't need two big Mazzers.
 The two Zass grinders I have were less than $100.00 for both and they
are excellent grinders.  Just stop and think about what that grinder
does to your nice homeroast beans.  Just think what happens after the
grind, you introduce very hot water to extract the wonderful flavors
of the coffee.  This mechanical preparation of the bean makes or
breaks the brew.  Personally, I am on the hunt for a good used Kony.
I just have to try out a good conical burr grinder!  So, instead of
fighting the physics of good coffee, go on an adventure hunt for a
good grinder.  To sum up what Pecan Jim said, he is saying he wants
you to have the best, and it can't be done without a good grind.
Les
On 9/4/07, Alchemist John  wrote:
<Snip>

5) From: Brian Kamnetz
I'm quite sure I recall Ray saying that his grinder is a silver fire
plug with "Mazzer" on the badge.
Brian
On 9/4/07, Alchemist John  wrote:
<Snip>

6) From: Les
Robert,
You may want to check out the Coffee Geek review,http://www.coffeegeek.com/reviews/grinders/gaggia_mmIt looks like a new one at street price is only about 20 bucks more.  I am
not sure which model this is.  However from what you have shared it doesn't
sound like a super deal in my opinion.
Les
On 9/4/07, Robert Shields  wrote:
<Snip>

7) From: Robert Shields
This is a multi-part message in MIME format.
Les,
Thank you for the quick response.  This is a Gaggia MDF grinder.
robert

8) From: Brian Kamnetz
Robert,
You will probably hear from some of them, but in response to questions
such as yours several listers usually come forth with their grinder
stories. There is usually a similarity to the stories. They go like
this: "I bought the first grinder because it was cheap and available.
It didn't work very well, so I 'upgraded' to a second roaster, and etc
etc etc." The story usually ends with a Rocky or a Mazzer, and a
comment to the effect that all the money spent prior to the Rocky or
Mazzer was wasted money.
Brian
On 9/4/07, Robert Shields  wrote:
<Snip>

9) From: Brian Kamnetz
Oops. "...so I 'upgraded' to a second roaster..." should of course say
"grinder".
Brian
On 9/4/07, Brian Kamnetz  wrote:
<Snip>

10) From: Homeroaster
Jim, I only disagree with one statement.  I think getting a good grinder
should 'precede' homeroasting.  Use it with your store bought beans and
'then' move on up to locally roasted specialty beans.  Then proceed to
homeroasting.
Or do it like Jim says and jump headlong into Sweetmaria's 'Vortex of Coffee
Pleasures'.
*********************
Ed Needham
"to absurdity and beyond!"http://www.homeroaster.com*********************

11) From: DJ Garcia
Indeed, if you think of it in terms of priorities when it comes to your
equipment investment, the grinder may well #1 0r 2.
DJ
Trying to get his priorities straight

12) From: stereoplegic
that's a review for the MM, from what i've read a much inferior grinder 
to the MDF in question (just look at it, looks almost identical to those 
awful La Pavoni grinders that clog as much as they grind). I think 
miKe's assessment of the MDF is pretty good. Not having used one, i 
can't be sure, but i'd say 50 bucks is a steal (you could probably sell 
it on eBay for more than that). not a Mazzer, but probably a much better 
grinder than you(Robert)'ll find locally for anywhere near that price 
anytime soon.
Les wrote:
<Snip>

13) From: Brandon Kolbe
You know I do have to agree about the grinder.  Even though the best grinder
I have is a Zassenhaus I have noticed a significant improvement in the
flavor of my coffee.  I originally started with a whirly grinder then
upgraded to a cheap burr grinder.  Even the cheap burr grinder made a
significant improvement in the flavor of the coffee.  When I bought the
Zassenhaus I noticed even more improvement.  I have been unable to afford a
more expensive grinder and have been unable to find a good one in the thrift
stores.  So, I make do with what I have.  The grinder makes a huge
difference so I would echo the old saying "spend as much as you can afford
on a grinder".
Happy Roasting,
Brandon
On 9/4/07, jim gundlach  wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
"We are what we think.
All that we are arises
With our thoughts.
With our thoughts,
We make our world."
       -- Buddha

14) From: Brett Mason
Watch it Brandon - I mean, I love my Zass(es), but that is almost heretical
to about 1/4 the list.  They would have you believe the zass is way too much
work, and something else must be bought, and therefore people can't afford a
grinder, and it's so unfair, and woe is me, and...
So congrats on getting a professional quality grinder with your Zass!
And yeah, down the road there will likely be other grinders....  But none
compare with your first Zass (I spared the more delicate phraseology)...
Brett
On 9/5/07, Brandon Kolbe  wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
Cheers,
Bretthttp://homeroast.freeservers.com

15) From: Robert Shields
Thank you all for helping in a decision of whether or not to spend $50.00 on 
a Gaggia.  I picked it up last night at 7:10 pm.  What a difference compared 
to my 10 year old Oster cafe' mill.  Now I get it, the flavor of the fresh 
roast coming out of the IR2 is incomparable. This mornings Monsooned Malabar 
Elephant was everything you all have been talking about.  The grinder makes 
the difference, You have proved this to be true!
Robert

16) From: stereoplegic
congrats on your find, glad you're enjoying some instant gratification.
Robert Shields wrote:
<Snip>

17) From: Les
Good Show as they would say in England.  I still say the best grinder for
the buck is a good Zass.  I have had 3 of them and they are awesome grinders
for the price.  I continue to be amazed when I use mine for everything from
espresso to French Press.
Les
On 9/5/07, stereoplegic  wrote:
<Snip>

18) From: George Kennedy
Give it a rest, Brett.  You feel that three-quarters of the list is with yo=
u on the Zass and yet you apparently still feel insecure about it.  Let it =
go.  Mike McKoffee has sometimes used a tag that is quite valid: "the pursu=
it of Koffee Nirvana is a solitary path."  I say "Bravo!" to Jim; you keep =
right on thinking for yourself.  I would also add that I suspect Brian's en=
capsulation of most people's experience regarding grinders is an excellent =
first generalization.
Connect to the next generation of MSN Messenger http://imagine-msn.com/messenger/launch80/default.aspx?locale=en-us&sourc=e=wlmailtagline=

19) From: Brian Kamnetz
I too upgraded (a few years ago now) from a whirly-blade grinder to a
Zassenhaus, a new 169DG from Tom and Maria, and I too noticed the
improvement you mention. It was not a subtle shift, it was a dramatic
shift. Though there have been scattered reports of some quality
control issues with Zass, I believe I recall Dr. Crema and others
stating that the consistency of grind with Zass grinders tends to be
very good. So it would be a really big, expensive step to upgrade to
anything better, though you would certainly get faster.
brian
On 9/5/07, Brandon Kolbe  wrote:
<Snip>

20) From: Brandon Kolbe
Sorry if I offended anyone that loves their Zass.  Perhaps I have been
mistaken.  I guess I have been under the impression that there are other
grinders that are better in grind quality.  I do have to admit that the
"grind quality for the buck" for the Zass is awesome.  I guess that it
really comes down to whether or not a person wants to spend the time
grinding by hand.
On 9/5/07, Brett Mason  wrote:
<Snip>

21) From: Aaron
I picked up an old zass off E bay and love it.  I also have a wall unit 
that SM's had when they got a few in limited stock.  I admit I don't use 
it much, it's more for show.  I have one of the turkish mills on the way 
and from what I have seen so far with Zass' quality, even though there 
were supposed problems, I have yet to see them and hope this new grinder 
is every bit as good as the others I have gotten in the past from them.
I have a jolly too and a maestro so have had the opportunity to try many 
grinders.
The coffee IS better with a good grinder, whether you got a zass, or 
whatever.
Now some will insist that a zass is simply the best.  Others will whine 
at the insistance of the zass being the best, but overall it's like the 
ford is better, no chevy is better arguement.  Both have their merits 
and both have their problems.  You are not going to convince the hard 
core owner of one, that the other is best or vise versa.
Get yourself a good grinder,   now whether you can only spend 300 
dollars or have 3300 to blow on a bunch of bells and whistles on a 
grinder, you still will have a respectable grinder to use.  Hell you 
might get lucky and find that 3300 dollar grinder for 300 used or in a 
thrift shop, you never know.
It doesn't matter how much one ended up spending on their grinder 
(although to some that seems to be the only bragging point they care 
about), what does matter is that they DID get a good grinder, no matter 
how they procured it.
OH and for what it's worth.  If a person is not an espresso drinker, 
then there is no reason really for them to pay the extra $$$ to get a 
grinder that will grind coffee to espresso qualities.  A maestro conical 
burr grinder which runs about 80 bucks new will do just fine for french 
roast, or drip brew or swiss gold or whatever.  Im sure there are other 
grinders out there which will also do just as well in this category.
aaron

22) From: stereoplegic
when i do a 16oz press or pourover, i'm finished grinding before my 
water has even begun to boil (i start w/ hot filtered water and only 
16oz at that). FWIW, i use a Trosser, not a Zass, but same principle.
Brandon Kolbe wrote:
<Snip>

23) From: Zara Haimo
Add me to the list of people who noticed a major improvement in the taste of 
my coffee using a Zass instead of a whirly grinder.  The jump up to a Mazzer 
made much less difference except for the obvious convenience of running off 
electricity instead of arm power.  The only complaint I have about my Zass 
is a tendency to drift off the setting - some people use Lock Tight (however 
it is spelled) to tighten the screw so it doesn't drift.  I have the knee 
model and got it 3-4 years ago from Sweet Maria's.  I had it with me in 
Hawaii the last couple of weeks and in Oregon for a week before that and 
used it to grind for an Aeropress during the trips.

24) From: raymanowen
"I disagree with RayO.
Your financial evaluations are paramount, even if your choices mean your
coffee sucks.  Get whatever preground you like, and spend NOTHIN on a
grinder - that's the BEST recommendation I can come up with for you.
See, it's YOUR preferences that matter most!!!!
Actually the only saving grace is you are (apparently) buying from the best
source, Sweet Maria's...  But then, hanging out here is free.  Disregard
people who talk about taste, body, aroma and/or nuance.  They wasted their
money on a decent grinder - but OH NO, you didn't succumb....  Wise Man you
are...
B - -
Maybe it's Folgers - something special in your cup.  And after all the
grinder DOES cost money, and that's way too much to expect from a prudent
buyer...."
and
"RayO-
Am I the only one that was paying attention and got this? [Guess so-]
I was laughing my butt off!
Good Day!
E - -"
I have used and have opinions on the efficacy of coffee grinding apparatus-
from a mortar and pestle through the modded weed whacker, high speed burrs,
conical burrs- to the fire hydrant-sized and weight machine that, like the
refrigerator, has a purpose and place in our kitchen.
In recommending such a machine, knowing others might waste their time,
coffee and expense on all the inferior ways of preparing coffee beans for
brewing, I referred to  my initial folly of trying to obtain the machine
through the well-known internet "auction" farce.
In the event, I had the vexation of spending nearly $200 on a grinder and
several new burr sets in an attempt to achieve a stable, repeatable grind. I
found a good home for the comical burr grinder and the excellent Virtuoso
burrs that Kyle Anderson sent me. The correct grinder and a new set of 83mm
burrs cost << $300.
Cheers and Mabuhay -RayO, aka Opa!
On 9/3/07, jim gundlach  wrote:
<Snip>

25) From: Brett Mason
Opa, Dear RayO, your medicine hasn't taken yet...   You're missing the
kindness and putting up with BS factor...  The premise of the whole
discussion is that a good grinder costs too much money, and that manual
grinders with terrific mechanisms are too much work (If I grind for 45
minutes just to get 2mg of coffee, what time should I wake up, etc.). Oh,
and a couple people bought very new ones and were disappointed...
Somewhere between $20 and $50 is a used Zass in great shape, just awaiting a
new home...  I like www.ebay.de with a search for "zassenhaus"...   make
sure the "Versand" is "Weltweit" (unless you don' live there), and you'll be
in for an incredible catch...  Then be discerning...
I shouldn't mention google/gmail, but their translation page makes for a big
help too...
Folgers comes preground - and it's Mountain Grown!
I'm wakin up at 2:30 tomorrow morning cause I want to make a whole pot in my
$20 drip machine....
Brett
On 9/6/07, raymanowen  wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
Cheers,
Bretthttp://homeroast.freeservers.com

26) From: Les
The the correct  answer to the quiz question in 5th grade in Hutchinson, MN
to the question, "Why is Folgers mountian grown?" is>>>>> "Because the Green
Giant peas in the valley."
I just can't get over the passion that the grinder question always brings
out in people.  Let me tell you all, that will all of the commercial places
like *$ going to full auto mode, there are a lot of good used  Mazzer Super
Jollys and Majors out there if you would just look.  I am spoiled by my
commercial size grinder and will never go back to a smaller grinder.
Besides that as Mike McKoffee pointed out, the smaller grinders need new
burrs at about 100 pounds, mine is between 400 and 500 pounds.  I also love
the speed of the grind.  I am truely spoiled!
Les
On 9/6/07, Brett Mason  wrote:
<Snip>

27) From: Jared
Living about 35 miles from Hutchinson Mn and knowing Les I have a special
appreciation for that 5th grade Minnesota joke.   Being someone who has gone
from an old whirly blade that made hard packed dust that I was careful to
pull out of the grinder ito put nto my brew to a Zass equivilant (PeDe)
user, to a Solis Mastro Plus and a Mazzer Mini user I also have a few
grinder opinions.  A sharp whirly blade used carefully (don't use the powder
like I used to) is still night and day better than non-homeroasted preground
coffee.   A Zass equivalent can do espresso and  other brews beautifully
with a bit of work, The solis is great for nonespresso work especially since
both burrs can now be replaced and the Mazzer is a fantastic espresso
grinder.   That being said I gave away all my whirly blade grinders, keep my
Zass equivalent in waiting for a power outage, have used the Solis multiple
times a day for years at work for French Press and drip and use my Mazzer
for Espresso at home.  Don't be ashamed of your grinder but know it can get
better with a better grinder and use what you have on brews it can handle.
Jared
On 9/6/07, Les  wrote:
<Snip>

28) From: Justin Marquez
Just to play Devil's Advocate here.... Folgers has wonderful grinders - even
particle size, no dust - and yet, their coffee sucks.  Obviously there is
more required for great coffee than a great grinder!  One might even
reasonably conclude that the grinder is not the most important part of the
equation.
Furthermore, how many people are going to admit that after spending in
excess of $200 to upgrade the grinder that it didn't make much difference?
I am not saying that it didn't improve the coffee brew, just that I don't
expect objectivity in that scenario.  Better to look at semi-objective
reviews on coffee geek.  How about some double blind taste tests from the
same batch of beans brewed same way and having only the grinders as the
variable?  Can people really taste the difference in a double blind test...?
Is "plurimodal distribution" really required? (heheheh)
Safe Journeys and Sweet Music
Justin Marquez (CYPRESS, TX)
On 9/6/07, Brett Mason  wrote:
<Snip>
--

29) From: Derek Bradford
Justin, do you brew espresso?  I would be surprised if an espresso
drinker/brewer couldn't see the difference immediately.  It's that big.
--Derek
On 9/7/07, Justin Marquez  wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
Every path but your own is the path of fate.  --Thoreauhttp://www.novernae.com --Home of the wandering sloth

30) From: Zara Haimo
This is a multi-part message in MIME format.
<Snip>
excess of $200 to upgrade the grinder that it didn't make much =
difference?  
My whirly grinder cost about $20.  My Zass cost about $70 new.  I got a =
huge improvement in taste for $50.  The move up to a Mazzer cost me a =
lot more and only made a modest improvement in taste over the Zass, but =
I did it mostly for the convenience especially when I was making coffee =
for a lot of people.  The Zass does a great job - if you are willing and =
able to grind by hand, it's well worth the investment.

31) From: Floyd Lozano
Well, here's an idea - let everyone have a turn on the grinder and make it
an interactive event if you're grinding for guests.  Let people taste the
difference it makes when you have a hand in the preparation!
-F
On 9/7/07, Stephen Carey  wrote:
<Snip>

32) From: stereoplegic
i dunno... most of my friends are pretty heavy-handed. wouldn't want 
them to destroy a work of art that a Zass is.
Floyd Lozano wrote:
<Snip>

33) From: Floyd Lozano
Totally serious.  Seems like the thing friends would like to do.  I mean, I
wouldn't put it like this 'grind your own damn coffee!' ;)
-F
On 9/7/07, Stephen Carey  wrote:
<Snip>

34) From: Les
John,
I agree with you 100%!  I used a Zass 169 for 18 years on a daily basis.  I
kept it clean and it still grinds as good as my Mazzer Major from espresso
to French Press.  There is really no perceptible difference between the two
grinders when it comes to shot quality.  My one regret is that I didn't jump
on one of the giant Trossers when I had the chance.  I have a Trosser at
work and it does a great job of grinding.  The hassle one has to go through
at the hospital to get anything electrical approved for use makes having a
manual grinder almost a necessity.  For that fresh cup at work it is
microwaved filtered water run through the areopress.  In my mind there is no
excuse for a bad grinder.  You can get an excellent grind for under $100.00
that is as good as a 800-2800 electric grinder.  It is called a Zass.   Like
Brett so appropriately posted, the German Ebay is an awesome place to get an
excellent Zass.  The last three I bought I paid less than $75.00 for them
and that includes shipping.  The one I sent my daughter and son-in-law was
never used by the previous owner.  The one I am currently using had very few
beans run through it.  The one my daughter has in Portland was also in
excellent shape.  I bought my Trosser for $5.00.  The bottom had fallen off
it.  It took 20 min. in the shop to make a new bottom.  If you are never
planning on doing espresso, the Solis Maestro is a good buy.  I had one for
2 years and never had a problem.  I only ran into issues when I began
pulling shots.  It lasted about 5 months.  Now with burr replacement, that
shouldn't be an issue.  You may have to replace burrs more often, but they
are reasonably priced.  There just isn't any reason to not have a good
grinder IMNSO.
Les
On 9/7/07, Alchemist John  wrote:
<Snip>

35) From: Larry Johnson
Good choice; if you can be polite to cats, you can be polite to anybody.
On 9/7/07, Stephen Carey  wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
Larry J

36) From: Les
OK folks, how many have followed Brett's advice and gone to the German Ebay
and checked out the Zassenhuas treasures?  I would post a link, but now that
Tom is carrying them again, that wouldn't be right.  However, I just was
over there and low and behold a Zass that I have wanted for years was
available!  My son has been coveting the one I have at home, and I have said
"no" because I just have to have a Zass at home.  So, for a mere $44.00 plus
$19.90 shipping I have a "Big" Zassenhaus coming my way!  It is way cool
with a wooden covered dome.  So with a little looking I now have the Zass I
have always wanted and my son's Christmas present!
Les
On 9/7/07, Larry Johnson  wrote:
<Snip>

37) From: Larry Johnson
Dang! I was just looking at that an hour ago. Well, you snooze, you lose.
Congrats on the find, Les. I don't mind losing it to you, really. I already
have a Trosser; not sure if I want a Zass just yet (starting to get a few
too many coffee "toys").
On 9/7/07, Les  wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
Larry J

38) From: Cookie (Ann-Marie)
I never even knew that the grinder had that much to do with how the coffee =
tasted. I only looked for a burr grinder that didn't spew ground coffee all=
 over my kitchen counter and stopped with that one. I have a feeling this i=
s going to be an expensive list for me.
  But, since we just spent umteen=
 thousand dollars on a new mattress, I can safely say, a new grinder is out=
 of the question for right now. I will read and learn, then buy.
   Cooki=
e
 
 http://cookiestitches.blogspot.com----- Original Me=
ssage ----
From: jim gundlach 
To: homeroast=
sts.sweetmarias.com
Sent: Tuesday, September 4, 2007 12:18:09 AM
Subjec=
t: +The Fetishism of the Commodity, aka "Better than Thou" attitude
As=
 one who advocates getting the best grinder you can, I resent the assertion=
 that those of us who make such recommendations do so because of a "better =
than thou" attitude.  In fact, I feel that those afflicted by the fetishism=
 of the commodity, the view that your worth is reflected in what you own, a=
re rather foolish puppets of the advertising industry.  No, I recommend the=
 best grinder because of all the things I have tried to improve coffee, the=
 first thing after home roasting and getting great greens from Tom, is gett=
ing a good grinder.  I have had about a dozen bad grinders and I own three =
good ones.  I feel the purpose of this list is to share experiences.  If yo=
u look back through the archives of this list, you will see several account=
s by people who finally try a good grinder and discover what us "grinder nu=
ts" have been talking about.   I am into good home roasted coffee because i=
t tastes good, even great and fantastic at times.  My experience
 tells me that if you take a good home roasted coffee and run it through a =
bad grinder, you are throwing away much of the flavor that makes home roast=
ing worthwhile.  Moving up to a RK drum or one of the other roasters that c=
ost about as much as a Rocky or a Mazzer Mini will make roasting more conve=
nient but will not give you better coffee than a hot air popcorn popper, a =
wok, or a heatgun/dogbowl.  Spending the money on the grinder will.  
   =
   pecan jim
On Sep 3, 2007, at 9:44 PM, raymanowen wrote:=
Contrary to information and conjecture that may have appeared on t=
his
list at other times, there is no necessity to purchase the best
gri=
nder you can find. Some posters advocating such have earned a
"Better Tha=
n Thou" moniker, but don't be fooled!

39) From: Brett Mason
Hiya Cookie,
The real issue is whether too many tiny particles of coffee dust/grit end up
in the grounds you will brew.
The better grinders actually "shave" the bean, without imparting the dust.
Dust = bitter... because of how much "coffee stuff" get leached out of the
bean.
Shaved grounds are usually much more consistently sized, which makes brewing
more controllable...
For me, a french press, a very coarse ZASS grind, and a pot of hot water
result in a heavenly cup-o-joe...
Brett
On 9/7/07, Cookie (Ann-Marie)  wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
Cheers,
Bretthttp://homeroast.freeservers.com

40) From: Rich
Please report the results of the QA check post arrival at your kitchen.
--Original Message Text---
From: Les
Date: Fri, 7 Sep 2007 10:12:54 -0700
OK folks, how many have followed Brett's advice and gone to the German Ebay and checked out the 
Zassenhuas treasures?  I would post a link, but now that Tom is carrying them again, that wouldn't be 
right.  However, I just was over there and low and behold a Zass that I have wanted for years was 
available!  My son has been coveting the one I have at home, and I have said "no" because I just have 
to have a Zass at home.  So, for a mere $44.00 plus $19.90 shipping I have a "Big" Zassenhaus coming 
my way!  It is way cool with a wooden covered dome.  So with a little looking I now have the Zass I 
have always wanted and my son's Christmas present! 
Les
On 9/7/07, Larry Johnson  wrote: Good choice; if you can be polite to cats, 
you can be polite to anybody. 
On 9/7/07, Stephen Carey  wrote: I am pretty sure I could manage to be 
polite.  I really could.  I will practice today on our cats!
At 12:00 PM 9/7/2007, you wrote:
Totally serious.  Seems like the thing friends would like to do.  I mean, I wouldn't put it like this 
'grind your own damn coffee!' ;)
-F  
On 9/7/07, Stephen Carey  wrote: 
F, I don't know if you are playing me or not, but really, it is a great idea, they would do it.  And 
why not, they want to drink it!  Cool idea, out of the box thinking, that is what we need.
Stephen 
At 11:02 AM 9/7/2007, you wrote:
Well, here's an idea - let everyone have a turn on the grinder and make it an interactive event if 
you're grinding for guests.  Let people taste the difference it makes when you have a hand in the 
preparation! 
-F
On 9/7/07, Stephen Carey 

41) From: Lynne Biziewski
I use a French Press, have a Braun Whirly-grinder, grind fine - and I get a
great cup. No bitterness.
If I COULD afford a good grinder, I'd probably get one, but for now - this
makes me happy.
BTW, I did a side by side comparison of my Zass & the Whirly, and I couldn't
tell the difference. But then again, maybe my palate is dull.
Lynne
ps then my Zass lost a nut (no jokes, please). maybe it wasn't grinding
right in the first place.
Who knows...
On 9/7/07, Brett Mason  wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
Sometimes we are lucky enough to know that our lives have been changed, to
discard the old, embrace the new, and run headlong down an immutable course.
Jacques Cousteau

42) From: Brett Mason
My wife says she found your Zass nut....
B
On 9/7/07, Lynne Biziewski  wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
Cheers,
Bretthttp://homeroast.freeservers.com

43) From: Brian Kamnetz
Stephen,
I visit my sister and her family at Christmas and in the summer. A
couple years ago I brought along a Zass and an Ibrik and made Turkish
coffee for everyone. Since then I have been bringing a Zass or a
Trosser knee-sized (a bit more portable) and a moka pot. My
brother-in-law is hooked on the moka pot coffee. Things were getting
hectic last summer so I asked him if he would mind doing various parts
of the process, from grinding to watching to moka pot to keep the brew
at a seep. He not only agreed to do it, but loved it. He had MUCH more
fun doing parts of it himself than he ever did watching me do it all.
I think there is a pretty good chance that many people would be like
him, and would not only agree to help with grinding and other parts of
the process, but would appreciate being included.
I have a walnut Zassenhaus 169DG and love it. I seldom use it now (I
have a Zassenhaus grain mill clamped to my counter and it is easier
and faster to use), but it sits inside my glass-door cupboard and I
love looking at it. I can't remember what I had for breakfast this
morning, but I do specifically remember looking at the 169DG and
thinking how great it looked there in my cupboard.
Brian
On 9/7/07, Stephen Carey  wrote:
<Snip>

44) From: Lynne Biziewski
Ha ha
L.
On 9/7/07, Brett Mason  wrote:
<Snip>

45) From: Justin Marquez
No, I don't have an espresso machine at home.
Safe Journeys and Sweet Music
Justin Marquez (CYPRESS, TX)
On 9/7/07, Derek Bradford  wrote:
<Snip>

46) From: Derek Bradford
That's fine.  I think it's worth at least considering the multitude of
espresso brewers who have seen dramatic improvements in shot quality after
upgrading to better grinders.  I've personally never heard a single instance
where someone upgraded (for espresso use) and didn't seen an improvement,
when that upgrade came from a generally-recognized "low quality" grinder.
--Derek
On 9/8/07, Justin Marquez  wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
Every path but your own is the path of fate.  --Thoreauhttp://www.novernae.com --Home of the wandering sloth

47) From: Vicki Smith
One of the things that changed for me when I went to a Rocky was that I 
found I enjoyed coffee more freshly roasted, without much rest, than I 
did with the less expensive grinder.
I'm assuming that my not so great grinder produced more fines and the 
resultant cup had a certain amount of over extracted brew in it. 
Whatever the shtuff is that makes itself known in the fines in those 
early days just doesn't seem to be as much of an issue with a better grind..
It's not that my coffee  doesn't change and (almost always) improve over 
the first few days, but I enjoy it more through the early parts and 
often get flavours that go away when rested for four days or so--which 
used to be  my standard rest period for most beans.
vicki
Brett Mason wrote:
<Snip>

48) From: Les
I am enjoying a very fine cappo as I type.  Why is that so important
to this discussion?  One of the only reasons I have a Mazzer Major
rather than staying with my Zass is because I make and design tampers.
 The Cappo that I had this morning was done with a new 49mm Ridgeline.
 I was a bit coarse on the grind, and with the Mazzer I can test and
test and test without having to crank.  It was nice having the Major
up at Alchemist John's when we did the pressure gauge tests on the
modified lever.   If I was just a home consumer, the Zass would be my
choice, not only for cost, but for quality.  I know someone complained
about a bad Zass.  Things do happen.  I also like my Major when I am
at events the the Espresso Jam or the PNWG.  It is a way for me to
contribute to the fun.  I really didn't have upgrade fever until I got
into the tamper business.  So this is a long way of saying Right On
Alchemist John.  There are many days during the week that I grind my
coffee with my Zass and let the monster rest in peace and I enjoy the
quietness of the morning.
Les
On 9/8/07, Stephen Carey  wrote:
<Snip>

49) From: Joseph Robertson
Les,
Let me be one of the first to admit I did an ebay search for all Zass
grinders. Several nice models. I hear tell that those burrs don't wear much
over the years? I'm glad you got a nice one. I think I want a new one from
Tom. I hope his supply doesn't dry up before I can get one.
JoeR
On 9/7/07, Les  wrote:
<Snip>

50) From: Cookie (Ann-Marie)
Then, I will keep the Star$ one. It works well for us right now.
 Perhaps=
 when we are more sure of my husband's health, I will be willing to whine a=
bout getting a good espresso machine and a better grinder, but right now, o=
nly five months out from discovering his brain tumor, we need to be more pa=
rsimonious, just in case Mr. Tumor decides to grow.
  Cookie
 
 
ht=
tp://cookiestitches.blogspot.com
----- Original Message ----
F=
rom: Aaron 
To: homeroast=
Sent: Wednesday, September 5, 2007 4:15:25 PM
Subject: Re: +The Fetish=
ism of the Commodity, aka "Better than Thou" attitude
I picked up a=
n old zass off E bay and love it.  I also have a wall unit 
that SM's had=
 when they got a few in limited stock.  I admit I don't use 
it much, it'=
s more for show.  I have one of the turkish mills on the way 
and from wh=
at I have seen so far with Zass' quality, even though there 
were suppose=
d problems, I have yet to see them and hope this new grinder 
is every bi=
t as good as the others I have gotten in the past from them.
I have a =
jolly too and a maestro so have had the opportunity to try many 
grinders=
.
The coffee IS better with a good grinder, whether you got a zass, or=
 
whatever.
Now some will insist that a zass is simply the best.  Ot=
hers will whine 
at the insistance of the zass being the best, but overal=
l it's like the 
ford is better, no chevy is better arguement.  Both have=
 their merits 
and both have their problems.  You are not going to convin=
ce the hard 
core owner of one, that the other is best or vise versa.
=
Get yourself a good grinder,   now whether you can only spend 300 
dol=
lars or have 3300 to blow on a bunch of bells and whistles on a 
grinder,=
 you still will have a respectable grinder to use.  Hell you 
might get l=
ucky and find that 3300 dollar grinder for 300 used or in a 
thrift shop,=
 you never know.
It doesn't matter how much one ended up spending on t=
heir grinder 
(although to some that seems to be the only bragging point =
they care 
about), what does matter is that they DID get a good grinder, =
no matter 
how they procured it.
OH and for what it's worth.  If a p=
erson is not an espresso drinker, 
then there is no reason really for the=
m to pay the extra $$$ to get a 
grinder that will grind coffee to espres=
so qualities.  A maestro conical 
burr grinder which runs about 80 bucks =
new will do just fine for french 
roast, or drip brew or swiss gold or wh=
atever.  Im sure there are other 
grinders out there which will also do j=
ust as well in this category.
aaron=

51) From: Cookie (Ann-Marie)
That's the richest kind!
   Cookie
 
 http://cookiestitches.blo=gspot.com
----- Original Message ----
From: Brett Mason 
To: homeroast
Sent: Thursday, Sep=
tember 6, 2007 5:40:19 PM
Subject: Re: +The Fetishism of the Commodity, a=
ka "Better than Thou" attitude
Folgers comes preground - and it's M=
ountain Grown!
Brett

52) From: Brian Kamnetz
I was in Spanish Club in high school. We did a skit based on the
Folgers ads. One of the discouragingly few things I can say in
Spanish: "Cafe de las Mountanias" (or something close to that). And
"Esta cafe is MALISIMO !"
On 9/11/07, Cookie (Ann-Marie)  wrote:
<Snip>

53) From: Cookie (Ann-Marie)
For the record, we told that joke in Central Wisconsin, too. Must have been=
 a midwestern thing. Like daring the stupid second grader to stick his tong=
ue on the chain link fence post in January. He always did. (I hope I didn't=
 need  a spew alert for that one.)
   Cookie, who is surely going to hell=
 for some of the things she did.
 
 http://cookiestitches.blogspot.c=om
----- Original Message ----
From: Jared 
To: homeroast
Sent: Thursday, September 6=
, 2007 9:18:06 PM
Subject: Re: +The Fetishism of the Commodity, aka "Bett=
er than Thou" attitude
Living about 35 miles from Hutchinson Mn and kn=
owing Les I have a special appreciation for that 5th grade Minnesota joke. =
 
 
On 9/6/07, Les  wrote:
The the correct  an=
swer to the quiz question in 5th grade in Hutchinson, MN to the question, "=
Why is Folgers mountian grown?" is>>>>> "Because the Green Giant peas in th=
e valley."

54) From: Brett Mason
Folgers does, though, taste like it is grown in that valley....
Brett
On 9/12/07, Cookie (Ann-Marie)  wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
Cheers,
Bretthttp://homeroast.freeservers.com

55) From: Les
So, Cookie, do you still live in the "land of the cheese and the freeze?"
Les
On 9/12/07, Cookie (Ann-Marie)  wrote:
<Snip>

56) From: raymanowen
"Cookie, who is surely going to hell for some of the things she did."
See ya there! -ro
On 9/12/07, Cookie (Ann-Marie)  wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
"When the theme hits the bass, I dance the Jig!" - -Virgil Fox at the Mighty
Wichita (ex- NYC Paramount) WurliTzer- 1976

57) From: Cookie (Ann-Marie)
Ah, I will check what is happening with our grinder one of these mornings, =
and see. I think it is probably doing a good job. If it weren't, we would b=
e getting dust all over the counter, which we aren't. We have in the past w=
ith other grinders. 
  Thanks,
 Cookie
 
 http://cookiestitches.=blogspot.com
----- Original Message ----
From: Brett Mason 
To: homeroast
Sent: Friday, Se=
ptember 7, 2007 1:21:54 PM
Subject: Re: +The Fetishism of the Commodity, =
aka "Better than Thou" attitude
Hiya Cookie,
 
The real issue i=
s whether too many tiny particles of coffee dust/grit end up in the grounds=
 you will brew.  
The better grinders actually "shave" the bean, without =
imparting the dust.  
Dust = bitter... because of how much "coffee stuf=
f" get leached out of the bean.
Shaved grounds are usually much more cons=
istently sized, which makes brewing more controllable...
 
For me, a fr=
ench press, a very coarse ZASS grind, and a pot of hot water result in a he=
avenly cup-o-joe...
 
Brett
 
On 9/7/07, Cookie (Ann-Marie)  wrote: 
  I never even knew that the grinder had that much=
 to do with how the coffee tasted. I only looked for a burr grinder that di=
dn't spew ground coffee all over my kitchen counter and stopped with that o=
ne. I have a feeling this is going to be an expensive list for me. 
  But=
, since we just spent umteen thousand dollars on a new mattress, I can safe=
ly say, a new grinder is out of the question for right now. I will read and=
 learn, then buy.
   Cookie
 
 http://cookiestitches.blogspot.com=----- Original Message ----
From: jim gundlach < pecanjim=
lsouth.net>
To: homeroast
Sent: Tuesday, Septembe=
r 4, 2007 12:18:09 AM 
Subject: +The Fetishism of the Commodity, aka "Bet=
ter than Thou" attitude
As one who advocates getting the best grinder =
you can, I resent the assertion that those of us who make such recommendati=
ons do so because of a "better than thou" attitude.  In fact, I feel that t=
hose afflicted by the fetishism of the commodity, the view that your worth =
is reflected in what you own, are rather foolish puppets of the advertising=
 industry.  No, I recommend the best grinder because of all the things I ha=
ve tried to improve coffee, the first thing after home roasting and getting=
 great greens from Tom, is getting a good grinder.  I have had about a doze=
n bad grinders and I own three good ones.  I feel the purpose of this list =
is to share experiences.  If you look back through the archives of this lis=
t, you will see several accounts by people who finally try a good grinder a=
nd discover what us "grinder nuts" have been talking about.   I am into goo=
d home roasted coffee because it tastes good, even great and fantastic at t=
imes.  My experience
 tells me that if you take a good home roasted coffee and run it through a =
bad grinder, you are throwing away much of the flavor that makes home roast=
ing worthwhile.  Moving up to a RK drum or one of the other roasters that c=
ost about as much as a Rocky or a Mazzer Mini will make roasting more conve=
nient but will not give you better coffee than a hot air popcorn popper, a =
wok, or a heatgun/dogbowl.  Spending the money on the grinder will.   
  =
    pecan jim
On Sep 3, 2007, at 9:44 PM, raymanowen wrote:=
Contrary to information and conjecture that may have appeared on t=
his
list at other times, there is no necessity to purchase the best
gri=
nder you can find. Some posters advocating such have earned a
"Better Tha=
n Thou" moniker, but don't be fooled!
 
 
-- 
Cheers=
,
Bretthttp://homeroast.freeservers.com


HomeRoast Digest