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Hand Mills - Other - John Boddie's Review
Posted: April 29, 2003, 1:38pm
review rating: 7.7
feedback: (3) comments | read | write
Hand Mills - Other
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Arrow The Hand Mills - Other has 6 Reviews
Arrow The Hand Mills - Other has been rated 9.50 overall by our member reviewers
Arrow This product has been in our review database since November 30, 2001.
Arrow Hand Mills - Other reviews have been viewed 68,729 times (updated hourly).

Quality Reviews
These are some of the best-written reviews for this product, as judged by our members.
Name Ranking
Ed Bourgeois 10.00
Jeremy Erwin 8.50
Tim Culver 8.00
Kahve Delisi 8.00
John Boddie 7.66

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Ratings and Stats Overall Rating: 10.0
Product Reviewed: Turkish Mill
Manufacturer: Hon Quality: 10
Average Price: Varies Usability: 10
Price Paid: $30.00 Cost vs. Value 10
Where Bought: eBay Aesthetics 10
Owned for: 1 month Overall 10
Writer's Expertise: I love coffee Would Buy Again: Yes
Similar Items Owned:
Bottom Line: Excellent quality Turkish mill - a superb choice if you like a fine grind.
Positive Product Points

Grind quality is superb. Grinding effort is low and it's faster than you might think. Design minimizes spilled grounds.

Negative Product Points

Grind is not adjustable. No remote control activation.

Detailed Commentary

The Hon Turkish Mill (Kahve Degirmeni) is a brass cylinder approximately 10 inches tall and 2 inches in diameter. There are four parts (starting from the top)

The removeable handle has a hinge in the middle and folds out to about 5 inches long. The hinge is set up so that it is fully self-bracing while grinding. A small brass knob is at the end of the handle and it provides a good grip between thumb and index finger while grinding.

The handle fits at the top of the grinder shaft. The grinder itself is about five inches long and the burrs are steel. The upper part of the grinder is the hopper for your beans. A full hopper holds sufficient beans for two doubles.

The circular grinder cap that sits at the top of the grinder has a hole for the shaft, and it is removed to allow access to the hopper. The cap fits snugly over the grinder and there's no chance of it flying off even during energetic grinding.

The lower end of the grinder slides into the cylindrical output hopper, where the giound coffee drops after passing through the grinder. Because this is a manual grinder, there is no static worth mentioning, and when you separate the lower part from the grinder, nothing spills. Many years ago I had a classic manual box grinder with the little drawer and I was always spilling grounds somewhere. That simply doesn't happen with this grinder. The grounds are at the bottom of a five-inch cylinder and unless you drop the cylinder, they're going to come out only where you want them to.

The best thing about this grinder is the consistency of the grind. It is a Turkish grind and I'm using it in my Briel machine. I may have subconsciouly backed off on the pressure of my tamp, but I'm getting doubles consistently in the 25-second range. With the finer grind, the flavor has picked up in intensity (I use Free Trade Peruvian espresso beans) and the puck is both firm and even throughout.

The hopper capacity is small, but it only takes 2.5 to 3 minutes to grind enough for two doubles. The cylindrical shape and light weight (about 3 lbs) make this comfortable to hold while grinding and unlike box grinders, you don't need to brace it on a counter or hold it between your knees.

Be warned - the grind is not adjustable. This is very fine Turkish grind. If this is what you like, then this is a good grinder for you. If you want a coarser grind, you'll need to get something else.

Minor things - the handle will fit into the grinder when folded, so you won't lose it. The brass finish and small size make this attractive enough to leave out on the counter.

There are a number of Turkish mills available in the market. If you're shopping for one make sure it has the words Kahve Degirmeni (Coffee grinder/mill). There are pepper mills that look very similar to the coffee mills.

On the side of the box, the manufacturer advises "Please grint dry (without moisture) coffee grains". Good advice, I'd say.

Seriously, if you like a really fine grind, see if you can find one of these mills. The design, construction quality and ease of use are all first-rate.

Buying Experience

eBay - purchased from seller with excellent feedback. No problems.

Three Month Followup

I really can't imagine owning a better grinder for espresso. I'm certain that the Mazzer and other specialized electrics provide more convenience at substantially more cost, but the quality and consistency of the grind I'm getting from the Hon leave me convinced that a couple of hundred dollars spent on a high-end electric would be wasted.

I've seen a couple of other Turkish mills that are of lower quality than the Hon. I haven't seen the Zassenhaus Turkish mill, though, but I expect that it would be equivalent to the Hon. There are reviews of the Zassenhaus Turkish Mill here at CoffeeGeek.

There is a wonderful tacticle sense of making espresso that (I'm convinced) comes from using a manual mill to grind the beans. The Hon is a superb choice in a manual mill and I recommend it unreservedly. If I could give it an "11" score, I would.

One Year Followup

After a year, I'm every bit as satisfied with this grinder as I was at the beginning. As I said, there is something staisfying in grinding by hand when making a really good double first thing in the morning. One of the great joys of making espresso is the care and attention to detail that a really good cup requires. A manual mill fits perfectly into that experience, and a Turkish mill provides convenience that is missing from the box mills.

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review rating: 7.7
Posted: April 29, 2003, 1:38pm
feedback: (3) comments | read | write
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