Best Antique Coffee Grinders: The Perfect Way to Start Your Morning

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Do you just love the smell of coffee in the morning? For those who need their fix, the classic coffee machine has become the most cherished kitchen appliance.

But for those of us who have coffee coursing through our veins and whose hearts beat for the smell of fresh beans, you just might be craving something more.

Sound like you? Great! Welcome to the rest of your life.

Becoming an expert on antique coffee grinders is something I’ve always wanted to do, so here I am to tell you more about them and how much fun they are to collect.

Below we have compiled a list of 7 of the best antique coffee grinders worth considering. Each of these machines would be a great fit for anyone looking to add a vintage look to their kitchen at home or in the workplace.

If you’re looking for a true antique or vintage model, we’ve created a buyer’s guide at the end that’s geared towards collectors.

Let’s get started!

Best Antique Coffee Grinders You Can Buy Today

1 Norpro Antique Coffee Grinder
2 Zassenhaus Santiago Coffee Grinder
3 Defancy Vintage Style Coffee Grinder
4 Peugeot Antique Coffee Mill
5 Foruchoice Vintage Style Coffee Grinder
6 Universal Housewares Gourmet Cast Iron Coffee Grinder
7 ROK Coffee Grinder

Nopro Antique Coffee Grinder

Norpro Coffee Grinder, 1 EA, Shown

You will fall in love with this coffee grinder’s vintage feel and simplicity that makes it look like you have had it for decades. It is a perfect replica of the old-time coffee makers, and visitors will wonder how you got such an old piece in your kitchen.

The Nopro Antique Coffee Grinder is super easy to operate as all you need to do is pour your beans in the hopper, twist the handle, and watch the machine do what it does best until you attain your desired size. It comes with adjustable settings so you can select your desired setting from fine to coarse.

The Nopro Antique Coffee Grinder is a beautiful addition to your kitchen counter. It adds a sense of class and elegance. It looks more like a décor than a coffee grinder until you pull it out for use. The grinder’s warm chestnut color gives your room a welcoming vibe. The coffee grinder is also a perfect gift idea for a loved one.

Pros

  • It is super easy to operate
  • The coffee grinder comes with adjustable grinding settings
  • The vintage look makes it perfect for décor
  • Features a drawer for convenience

Cons

  • Sometimes the grind gets behind the draw, and you have to tap it after a few days of use

Zassenhaus Santiago Coffee Grinder

Zassenhaus "Santiago" Mahogany Beech Wood Manual Coffee Mill

If you are looking for a coffee grinder with a mix of a modern and old fashioned vibe, the Zassenhaus Santiago Coffee Grinder is precisely what you are looking for. Zassenhaus is a trustworthy brand that has been making coffee grinders for over 15 decades, so you can trust that the quality has not been compromised. You get an original vintage grinder with modern parts.

The coffee grinder is loved due to its conical burr operation mechanism, which allows you to grind varying consistencies from coarse to extra fine. With the grinder’s quality parts, you are assured that it will pass the test of time. The grinder is hand-cranked and non-electric. This means that you can use it at any time without stressing about a power outage.

The antique coffee grinder is characterized by a beautiful mahogany finish, making it a perfect décor for your kitchen. It may complement the rest of the fixtures in the room.

Pros

  • The grinder is ideal for grinding Turkish coffee

  • The conical burrs mechanism protects the ground coffee beans from being all over
  • It is non-electrical so that you can operate it at any time
  •  Its quality is incomparable
  • Features a beautiful finish

Cons

  • The grinder is a bit heavy hence making it hard to carry around

Defancy Vintage Style Coffee Grinder

There is everything to fancy about the Defancy Vintage Style Coffee Grinder, all from its unique vintage look to its incomparable quality. You will love its design, which resembles a cast iron crank wheel. It does not only look great when on your kitchen counter but also, it makes coffee beans grinding fun and super-efficient.

It features an extremely easy-to-operate mechanism. All you need to do is place your coffee beans in the bowl, turn the handle to switch on the ceramic burrs, and leave the coffee grinder as it does its job. It only takes a few minutes to have freshly ground coffee in the wooden drawer, ready to brew.

The Defancy coffee grinder provides you with high flexibility to choose between fine and coarse grinds. It is operated manually so you can select your grinding settings. It comes with a manually operated hand crank, meaning that you do not need an electricity plug to grind the coffee beans.

The wooden drawer makes everything easier and more convenient. It also prevents the coffee from making a mess, and while at the drawer, you can add other ingredients such as nutmeg or cinnamon.

Pros

  • It is manually operated; thus no need for electric power when grinding
  • Comes with a wooden drawer for convenience
  • It is easy to use
  • The coffee grinder features a beautiful vintage look
  • Comes with different grinding settings from extra fine to coarse.

Cons

  • Getting the right grinding setting is a bit hard.

Peugeot Antique Coffee Mill

Peugeot Antique Coffee Mill, 8-1/4" x 5" x 5"

The Peugeot Antique Coffee Mill features a wooden make with a rustic weathered finish to give you the old-time vibes. The vintage look makes it an excellent décor addition to your kitchen counter, and you can easily convince visitors that you have had it for decades. It is a replica of the original Peugeot Coffee Mill made back in 1840 by the Peugeot brothers.

Nonetheless, this modern version has improved features such as the grinding mechanism that allows you to produce different sizes, all from extra fine to coarse. It comes with a 5-year warranty and a lifetime warranty on mechanism. Hence you are guaranteed long life service.

The Peugeot Antique Coffee Mill has a fully adjustable manually-operated burr for efficiency and flexibility so you can select your ideal consistency. The fact that it is made of stainless steel for corrosion resistance is a great plus.

While it is not the cheapest option on the market, the quality you get from this antique coffee grinder is worth the value of money paid for it. It will undoubtedly stand the test of time without any compromise on your coffee quality.

Besides its primary purpose, which is to grind coffee, you can get this grinder as kitchen décor or a gift for a friend or relative.

Pros

  • It features a stainless steel operation mechanism
  • Comes with a lifetime warranty, hence maximum value for money
  •  Features a beautiful vintage finish
  • The grinder features adjustable grinding settings

Cons

  • It has a small capacity

Foruchoice Vintage Style Coffee Grinder

Foruchoice Manual Coffee Grinder Antique Cast Iron Hand Crank Coffee Mill With Grind Settings & Catch Drawer 12.5 x 12.5 x 26 cm

If you live in an area with frequent electricity outages, the Foruchoice Vintage Style Coffee Grinder is made for you. It features a manual hand crank that does not require electricity to operate. You only need to adjust its settings, pour the coffee beans in the bowl, twist the handle, and wait for your freshly ground coffee.

It is characterized by a small, compact design, so you can easily carry it around as you travel or to and from the office. Besides convenience, you will love the vintage and modern design combination of this coffee grinder. It is the right appliance for people who love their items vintage and original. It gives you the old-time feeling, but still, some things about it are purely modern. It is made of pure pine wood, cast iron, and ceramic core.

It comes with a catch drawer, so you do not have to worry about leaving the area around your grinding space looking messy. The drawer also allows you to add cinnamon, cocoa, and other ingredients to mix with the coffee. You can easily adjust the ceramic burr to choose your coffee’s consistency, which could be coarse, fine, or extra-fine.

The Foruchoie Vintage Style Coffee Grinder is excellent for individuals who love antique things but still want total control over the coffee grind. Even if you are not into coffee, placing this appliance on your countertop makes a whole difference in your kitchen.

Pros

  • It comes with a drawer for convenience
  • You can easily adjust the grinding settings to get your preferred consistency
  •  It features a combination of vintage and modern design
  • Easy to use

Cons

  • Some users complained that its grinding power is not as good

Universal Housewares Gourmet Cast Iron Coffee Grinder

Universal Housewares Gourmet Cast Iron Coffee Grinder

If you are a coffee lover, the Universal Housewares Gourmet Cast Iron Coffee Grinder is a perfect addition to your kitchen appliances. This antique coffee grinder allows you to display your undying love for coffee while letting you make the best quality and flavored coffee in the comfort of your home.

It features a high-quality hand-grinding wheel that makes it easy to use. It also has a wooden drawer to curb mess and allow you to improve the taste of your coffee by mixing other ingredients.

The coffee grinder is characterized by an antique design and a manually-operated grinder for efficiency. The covered bean hopper adds to its beautiful appearance to give it an old-times look and feel. The best part is that you can adjust the wheel so you can determine your desired consistency.

Pros

  • The coffee grinder features a beautiful antique design
  • It is super easy to operate
  • Features an easily portable size and design
  • Super affordable

Cons

  • The grinder cannot give you French press.

ROK Coffee Grinder

The first thing that people notice when they come across this coffee grinder is its unique look, which does not look more like a coffee grinder. It features a medieval look with easily removable washers for efficiency.

The ROK Coffee Grinder is loved for its consistency and quiet operation compared to electric grinders. It has a non-slip ring that protects the grinder from wobbling during operation. The left-handed users are fully covered with its adjustable settings, and you can also adjust the settings to suit your consistency preference.

ROK has been reviewed among the best coffee grinders due to its ability to offer quality grinds. It comes with a burr grinding mechanism that accommodates all coffee brewers.

Its stainless steel conical burrs assure you of durability hence the quality of your money, while the ergonomic design makes it a perfect decorative piece for your kitchen or café.

Pros

  •  Has an ergonomic design
  •  It features stainless steel for durability
  • Comes with easily removable washers
  • The coffee grinder offer quality and consistent grinds

Cons

  • The coffee grinder is large and bulky, which hinders portability

Collectors Guide: Types of Antique Coffee Grinders

Antique Coffee Grinder

The earliest coffee grinders were simply a mortar and pestle. That thing you used for your science experiments in school was the most efficient way people had of grinding their precious beans.

The ancient Egyptians used this method to make the delicious drink we now take for granted on a daily basis.

However, there are several bronze coffee mortar and pestles housed in museums that date back to the seventeenth century. They belonged to affluent individuals and were prime examples of exquisite German, English, and Dutch craftsmanship.

However, it wasn’t until 1789 that the first English patent was issued for a coffee grinder, and it was still another 9 years before an American patent was issued for the machine. Since then, there have been many developments in different types of coffee grinders.

Because grocery stores in the 18th and 19th centuries only sold coffee beans, you had to have something to grind them. Most stores had a coffee grinder on the counter and they would grind your beans upon purchase.

But those who wanted their own coffee grinder at home could purchase smaller versions.

Cast iron

Cast Iron Antique Coffee Grinder

The first American coffee grinders were cast iron. They had a wheel on the side with a crank attached that you used to grind your beans. They were originally designed as floor models, and they were very large and heavy.

You can still find these today and most date back to the late 19th century.

They’re made of cast iron, they’re heavy, and they range in size from countertop size to the much larger floor model size. Many still work just as they did when they were brand new.

Box

Box Style Coffee Grinder

A box coffee grinder is just what it sounds like. It has a reservoir that feeds beans through a hand crank, and after the beans are ground, it stores the grounds in a box underneath.

This makes it easy to contain the mess and make the most of the beans you grind. You would see them a lot on drug store countertops during the late 1800s.

Wall mounted

Wall mounted coffee grinders became a popular kitchen commodity in the late 1800s and remained popular through the turn of the century and well into the 1900s.

You put the beans in the top and turn a hand crank on the side. They didn’t have a reservoir, so you had to hold a bowl underneath to catch your grounds.

Double wheel

Much like a wheeled coffee grinder, these models were patented a few years later, but use the same mechanism to grind the beans.

However, due to their two-wheel design, they have a certain symmetrical aesthetic appeal that many collectors like.

Philadelphia Enterprise

Philadelphia Enterprise was one of the most prevalent manufacturers of coffee grinders in the United States.

You can still find these today, and they’re not in short supply. The company was founded in 1864 by John Gulick Baker.

They made coffee grinders of all sizes and the company grew quickly. They manufactured everything from bolts to large, motorized coffee mills.

These mills were seven feet tall and weighed nearly 500 pounds.

They also made tobacco cutters, juicers, and cast iron banks. The company even won the Centennial Medal for outstanding contributions to the American public in 1876.

Most general stores used the Enterprise Model No. 12-½ coffee mill for grinding large amounts of coffee. It was made between 1886 and 1898. It was 42 inches tall with two wheels 25 inches in diameter. It weighed 140 pounds and was made of cast iron.

If a general store owner could afford such a luxury, it was a status symbol. Most of these types of grinders were painted bright green or red and had some decorative decals.

In true Victorian style, some even features gold painted details for a more deluxe appearance.

Flower motifs on the wheels even made them more attractive for women shoppers, enticing them to buy coffee so they could watch the machine work.

Antique Coffee Grinder Values

Vintage Coffee Grinder Values

The value of an antique coffee grinder could range front $20 all the way up to $100, depending on size, type, age, and condition. There are other factors that contribute to the value that you might not think about.

Evaluate the grinder’s condition and make note of any rust or cracking. If you can test it to see if it still works, function is something that can contribute a lot to its value or how easy it will be to restore.

Cast iron rusts more easily, but if the rust is light, it will be much easier to clean up than significant rust damage. Wood, porcelain, and china coffee grinders crack, which can detract from the value.

Appearance will impact the value, but decorative beauty is in the eye of the beholder. While some antique coffee grinders are plain or mechanical looking, you may enjoy the look of these better than something that’s been stained or painted.

You can also check for manufacturer labels. If you find a common one, you may have a more valuable item than other unknown or unmarked grinders.

Some of the more well-known manufacturers include:

  • Enterprise
  • Arcade
  • Parker
  • Steinfeld
  • Landers, Frary, and Clark

You can compare your grinder to similar models recently sold to get a better idea of how much you should pay.

Wooden coffee grinders in rough condition usually sell for about $20. A porcelain grinder from a well-known manufacturer that might have a few minor chips or cracks could go for $100.

However, a large, professional coffee grinder made by a manufacturer like Philadelphia Enterprise will sell for $300 or even more.

Buying Guide

Choosing the right antique coffee grinder is the most important step in obtaining the best quality cup of coffee. However, there are endless grinder variations on the market today, which makes finding the right one a daunting task, especially for first-time buyers.

This buying guide will make your search more manageable.

Consider the Grinding Power and Speed

How long do you have to wait to get your freshly ground coffee? The right antique coffee grinder features fast and sturdy operation, allowing you to have your coffee in a matter of minutes. The right one should also allow you to adjust the grinding settings to get your desired coffee consistency.

The Zassenhaus Santiago Coffee Grinder is a great choice in this case with its conical burr grinder that takes less than five minutes to freshly grind your coffee beans.

The Appearance

When we talk of antique, the first thing that may come to your mind is vintage. While these coffee grinders feature some modern features, the best one should have a vintage and rusty design such that you can easily convince visitors that you have had it for years.

Consider the Size of the Coffee Grinder

Luckily, most of these coffee replica grinders are characterized by a small, compact design, which allows you to carry the appliance as you travel. The ideal size of the coffee grinder depends on how you intend to use it.

If you only plan on using it while at home, size may not matter. However, if you wish to travel with it, a small, light-weight antique coffee grinder is your best option.

The Peugeot Antique Coffee Mill is an excellent choice for nomads with its compact size and design.

The Capacity

Some coffee grinders are fast and feature a smooth operation but cannot hold more than a cup’s worth of coffee beans at a time. If time is of the essence, you need a coffee grinder with a high capacity so you can grind as much coffee at once without having to refill the beans after every minute.

The Norpro coffee grinder has a drawer which is big enough to hold enough coffee for you and your guests.

Final Thoughts

For the collector, the thrill of the chase is what makes collecting these antique coffee grinders so much fun. And if they still work, that’s an added bonus.

But if you’re seeking the old-timey look with modern functionality, without the age and authenticity, we’ve included several great options in this list.

About Sarah Caldwell

Sarah is a God-fearing wife and mother of four. She enjoys spending time with her family and the great outdoors. Experiences over things is her mantra, and she loves rustic farmhouse decor, wood burning stoves, and old-timey practices that need to make a dramatic comeback.