Looking for an awesome and not wildly expensive grinder for coffee beans...any suggestions?
We have this one. http://www.amazon.com/Cuisinart-DBM-8-Supreme-Automatic-CCM-16PC1/dp/B00018RRRK/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1338497898&sr=8-1
Baratza Encore. You will not regret it.
Not to recommend any specific model. But here's a trick I use for our one coffee grinder, in which I grind I sometimes grind spices.
If you clean the grinder with a tablespoon of raw rice and a tsp of baking soda..it should remove any smell and taste of previous spice grinding. You might have to rinse and repeat a couple of times, but it works for those on a budget and afraid to use the grinder for spices and coffee.
If you are a serious coffee drinker, go with a burr grinder rather than a blade grinder. The burr grinder cracks the beans open and releases maximum flavor ($80 and up) and usually have a covered hopper where you can store about 1/2 lb or so of beans, then simply press a button to grind, remove the catch bin, and transfer to your brewing machine; the blade grinders (usually in the $30-40 range) work fine for those who are not coffee officianados but do make a mess when emptying/transferring beans. In either case, I recommend the Capresso brand - very reputable and stand by their product if anything does happen to it.
Two questions about your burr grinders: Are they noisy? Do they clog up when you grind oily beans? I love the taste they give when they work right. But some of them sound like jet planes taking off, and my Capresso could not keep the ground coffee flowing, making it really difficult to judge how much I had.