The size matters! So, get the right grind. And what is the best grind for coffee? It is related to which method of brewing you choose and your tastes. There is some common understanding, though. If you are using a French press to make your coffee, you would like an extra coarse grind, for example. If you choose pour over as your brewing method, the best grind to use is a medium-coarse.
So, how does the size of the coffee grounds affect the taste of my coffee? The basic is: the flavour will be extracted once it comes into contact with water. The different grinds of coffee will influence how fast the water will pass through them, determining the strength of your coffee.
The finer the grind size, the more extraction will happen due to the greater surface area. The coarser the grind, the less extraction there will be. Under extraction leads to sour tastes, while over-extraction will create more of a bitter flavour profile. So if your coffee is too sour or watery, grind finer. In case it is too bitter and extra acidic, you need to grind coarser.
Barista master tip 1: most drip coffee makers call for a medium to medium-fine grind.
Barista master tip 2: unless you want to invest in an automatic burr grinder, a manual hand mill is the most affordable way to achieve a consistent grind. They do require a small amount of manual labour, but it is also part of the coffee-making experience!
Barista master tip 3: about the blade grinders, they also do the job. But be aware that they produce inconsistent particle size, which can lead to over-extraction.