Baratza is a known name in coffee enthusiast circles for producing consumer-level coffee grinders, that perform perfectly. It has an amazing lineup of grinders that range from entry-level to more advanced machines. Today we are going to focus on a very beginner-friendly grinder from the manufacturer, the Encore. When I first started my coffee journey this was the most viable option and this is the grinder that honed my skills on.
Each brew came out fantastic thanks to its slow grind speed that was very consistent and amazing. In fact, if you are not extremely serious about coffee, the Baratza Encore Grinder can be your first and last. It provides excellence in every department, it has a gorgeous design, it very easy to use, the grind comes out fantastic and it provides amazing value for its price. A real state of the art grinder as always from Baratza.
For starters, the Baratza Encore is a very compact grinder covering little workspace, measuring just 13.3×5.5×6.3-inches. The grinder is a little heavy though, thanks to its sturdy construction. When talking about the construction it is worth stating that the Baratza Encore is a very durable grinder that will last a lifetime, and it looks the part, overall I can say that it is built like a tank.
Design-wise it looks similar but more streamlined than other entry-level grinders, having the transparent hopper on top that houses the beans and releases them to the conical burrs via a small gap to ensure precision. It is worth stating that the burr grinder is built with heavy-duty steel and gets its power from a mighty DC motor. Throughout the burrs are designed to have sharp edges in the grooves to provide better grinding. On the outer part of the device under the hopper, you will find the dial to adjust the grind size, having 40 total grind settings, this is as good as it gets for a beginner.
The ground then is output to the plastic collection bin in the device that is easily removable. On the right-hand side of it, you will find a dial for powering the machine on and off, I find this perfect for beginners as you learn how much you need to grind manually for the right amount of coffee.
The cleanup process of the Baratza Encore is pretty straight forward, and it is designed to be pretty easy, the container and the hopper can be removed and washed in hand, and they are also dishwasher safe. The best feature was that its top burr was removable so you can clean it throughout, you just have to be careful because it can get slippery due to the oils.
Through my testing, I found that the steel burrs combined with the high powered DC motor got a slow grind speed, but I think it is better in keeping the flavors and oils in the grounds. Also due to this the grind consistency was better than its competitors through all the settings, I tried a wide range of settings from the finest to the coarsest and it delivered. If you are passionate about your espresso it was excellent as it did the job better than any other entry-level grinder, it could also achieve Turkish coffee level powder-fine grinds comfortably.
If you are just starting out, and even if you are more experienced but want a solid grinder there is no better option than the Baratza Encore, a fail-safe choice.