The Baratza Encore is a fine coffee grinder. In addition to being one of the best selling grinders on the market, it’s also an appliance that is great at scaling with its owner. Despite the relatively reasonable price it’s able a good enough grinder to stay with you through your entire coffee journey, from beginner to enthusiast to expert.
Here are some ways to get the most out of your Encore.
Choosing The Best Grind Setting
The Encore changes the size of the coffee grind by pushing down on the top of the plastic hopper (the thing that stores the beans on the top) and then turning it. There is an indicator on the grind that points to a number — this is your grind setting. This is key:
The lower the number the finer your grind, and the higher the number, the larger the grind.
Here are some suggested grind settings for different types of coffee, assuming a properly calibrated Encore that hasn’t seen enough use to create any wear on the parts or the burrs.
- Espresso: 8
- Aeropress: 12
- Pourover (Hario V60, Kalita Wave, etc.): 16
- Automatic Coffee Maker (Breville Precision Brewer, Moccamaster, etc.): 19
- Chemex: 20
- Clever: 28
- French Press: 28
How Do I Decrease The Static?
The Encore through some strange set of circumstances inside that the company doesn’t seem able to fix, builds up a lot of static. This caused the case to hold on to all the little coffee bean flakes (known as chaff). These will create quite a mess around the counter. How do you fix this?
First of all, great a big, strong rubber band and place it around the whole grinder in a way that it hold the coffee ground bin tightly in place. If this is always as far back as possible all the flakes will go into the bin.
Next, when you are done grinding, you can get the lid of the hopper and push it on and off a few times. This thing seals really well, so it will force a bit of air down the grind chute, taking some chaff with it. You can also tap the side of the grinder a few times to shake some chaff loose as well.
If you absolutely want to stop static then you can drop a few drips of water (seriously just 2-3) down into the middle of the beans right before grinding. A mist or spritzer will work even better. Wait 15 seconds and then grind and you won’t have any static problems. This might seem a little crazy, but it works and Baratza approves of this.
How Do I Clean My Encore?
Yes, coffee grinders can benefit from a good cleaning now and then. To clean the grinder the main thing you want to do is unplug it and then start taking an many pieces off of/out of it as possible.
Don’t unscrew anything, especially that wing nut under the hopper and be careful with the thin rubber gasket under the hopper as well. With all the parts, hopper, and bin out, turn the grinder upside down and get all those old beans out. Watch the old coffee dust just fall out. Also you can brush the inside of the bin area out with the included brush (or one of your own).
You can also stick a vacuum down onto the top of the grinder if you have something with a hose attachment, though this can be hit and miss depending on your vacuum. Something like a Dyson V11 will work wonders though.
If you really want a deep clean you can use grinder cleaning tablets, like Full Circle or Grindz, both from Urnex. These will flush out old coffee grinds as well as soak up any stale coffee bean oils that are lingering. For years people have recommended rice, but we would not do this. Rice is harder than coffee beans and it can put a lot of undue stress on the grinder, voiding your warranty. Either way, you’ll want to run at least 70g of coffee through the grinder after to flush out the cleaning materials.
How Often Should I Clean My Encore?
This will vary based on how often you use it and how oily you beans are, but every other month will be more than sufficient for most people.
How Do I Recalibrate My Encore?
This is very doable but it’s a little bit advanced. It’s definitely recommended to do it every few years if you want to maintain the health and performance of your grinder. This video is the best way to figure out how to do the calibration as it’s a bit involved.