Consistent grind size is an important aspect of coffee brewing and one of the key contributors to the delicious taste. While the cheap electric grinders create a mess rather than a consistent grind and result in an unevenly extracted coffee, a good-quality burr grinder makes a notable difference.
But no matter how good your grinder is, the marginal part of the coffee grounds are always ground either too fine or too coarse. And before you dismiss the idea of sieving your grounds after the grinding, let us tell you what difference it will make in perfecting your coffee.
How does coffee sifting work? Is it necessary? And what is the best coffee sifter out there?
What Is Coffee Sifting?
What started as a coffee fine-tuning technique only known to coffee nerds and baristas who use sifting when brewing the perfect cup at coffee championships is now accessible to everyone at a fairly affordable price.
Consistent grind size is one of the key things that ensure even extraction. And you might not be aware that even the best grinder is not perfect and the ground coffee always contains some particles that are too coarse or too fine for your desired grind.
This is when a sifter comes in. It traps the grinds that are too coarse or too fine and leaves you only with the coffee grinds that are perfect for your brewing method.
Is Sifting Necessary?
We can almost hear you wondering whether sifting freshly ground coffee is really necessary? Isn’t that going a bit too far? Isn’t it just the territory for coffee nerds and baristas?
It’s important to establish that while sifting coffee makes a noticeable difference in the taste of your brew, you should see it more as an icing on the cake. Worrying about using a coffee sieve only comes after you’ve managed to get all the fundamentals right.
Aspects of coffee brewing that come beforehand include getting the best beans that are freshly roasted, choosing the correct grind size, well-performing coffee maker as well as the grinder, and correct and consistent brewing temperature. Only then comes the sifting.
Advanced Baristas Only
If you’ve mastered all the basic coffee brewing skills and want to take your cup to the next level, the uniformity of the grind that you’re able to reach with the help of a coffee sifter will enhance your brew.
The optimal extraction is often sabotaged by some grounds that are too fine and will be over-extracted, and as a result, too bitter, as well as the grounds that are too coarse and make the coffee under-extracted, and sour-tasting.
The coffee sieve presents an easy solution that eliminates these imperfections. So while it is unable to fix your brewing mistakes and make bad coffee taste good, it will make good coffee taste even better. This is proven by the barista who won the Irish Brewers Cup Championship in 2017, Stephen Houston, who attributed much of the credit of his award-winning cup of coffee to his Kruve sifter.
Even with a great grinder, there are tiny dust particles, called fines, that the grinder produces as a byproduct. These can cause a slightly bitter aftertaste. And when on a mission to perfecting your cup, even the smallest details are important. This is when the sifter will help.
How To Sift Coffee?
Even when most of your coffee is ground to the desired grind size, the small differences influence the overall taste of your brew. But before you grab a sieve that you use for flour when baking, stop there, you need a coffee sieve!
If you don’t want to look at every particle using a microscope to make sure that all the different ones are eliminated, coffee sieves are a good solution.
Sifting coffee is still not that well known beyond the barista world and the small market is reflected by the small competition. One of the most popular ones is Kruve Sifter that is affordable, functional, and easy to use.
Kruve Sifter In A Nutshell
Kruve Sifter presents a small investment that will eliminate the margin of error of your grinder and perfect your coffee experience. And especially if you’ve already invested in a good coffee machine or a grinder, getting a sifter is a cherry on top that will bring you the perfect cup you’re looking for (and deserve).
With sturdy stainless steel construction, the sifter is durable, easy to use, and clean. There are two options to choose from. The basic option comes with 2 sieves, 400, and 800 microns.
With these, you sieve your coffee grounds through 3 sifters, the top one will trap your grounds that are too coarse, the middle one collect the grounds that are the right size and the bottom sifter will contain the fines.
When Details Matter
The more expensive option of Kruve Sifter includes 12 sieves that range from 200 to 1100 microns for much bigger adjustability. Alternatively, you can also get the basic one and purchase the sieves you need separately.
For example, if you primarily brew pour-overs, start with the 200-600um range and if you mostly use a French press, go with the 600-1000um range.
The sieve is not designed with any particular brewing method in mind and will work with your favorite one. And while it will create a superior consistency and extraction for your espresso machine, it would also be efficient at preventing particles that are too fine getting into your French press and present the bitter unpleasant taste.
The pleasing look with a stylish bamboo lid and a stand that would please the eyes of any interior designer ensures that the sifter will also make a nice addition to your kitchen top.
Sifting Is Not For You If…
You’re Just Getting Into Manual Brewing
As mentioned above, as much as using Kruve coffee sieve or its equivalent will bring the desired consistency into your cup, it is not worth considering until you have all the basics mastered. Sieving coffee won’t help if you’re using old low-quality beans, inconsistent temperature, a cheap grinder, or incorrect grind size.
However, as soon as you have the basics covered, using the sieve will help to get rid of every inconsistent particle and enable the best possible brew.
To Sift Or Not To Sift?
Passionate coffee aficionados are always looking for ways to reach the most delicious brew and make their coffee taste even better. While a good grinder will be able to produce a consistent grind size, there’s always a small portion of the grinds that end up being too fine or too coarse. That’s why a sieve would bring the taste profile of your cup even closer to perfection.
While the idea of the extra hassle of sieving your coffee before brewing might sound overwhelming, the process is easy and doesn’t take that much time. And because Kruve sifter is also affordable and doesn’t take up a lot of space in your kitchen, it is a good thing to have even if you’re not going to use it every single time you’re making a coffee.
The Bottom Line
So, is the coffee sieve necessary and should it be the next addition to your coffee kit? The answer depends largely on the level of your barista skills. Think of the sieve as the icing on the cake that you don’t need to worry about until you master all the fundamentals of brewing.
Getting a sieve shouldn’t come before getting a good grinder, using a well-performing coffee machine as well as the correct grind, and won’t be able to make bad coffee taste good.
However, for the ambitious home baristas that want to make their good coffee even better by ensuring an exceptionally consistent grind, don’t hesitate and take your coffee to the next level.