coffee grinders icon

Porlex Mini Review

author gravatar
By Matt Woodburn-Simmonds

The original Porlex Mini was an instant hit due to its compact size and high-quality burrs. But it wasn’t without its flaws, which is why Porlex discontinued the Mini and released the Mini II. So we had to get our hands on the new model that aims to solve the original’s issues while keeping the small size and bargain price.

The Porlex Mini II is a great compact grinder for those on a budget. Particularly anyone who’s brewing AeroPress, pour over, or French press on the go. The new burrs have improved stability for a more consistent grind giving you better-tasting coffee. They also grind around 30% faster than the original.

There are a few important tweaks to the build quality too. So we got out our favorite travel brewers and hit the road to test and update our Porlex Mini Review. Let’s see if the sequel is better than the original:

This article may contain affiliate/ compensated links. As an Amazon Associate, we earn from qualifying purchases at no additional cost to you. For more information please see our disclaimer here.

Overview of the Porlex Mini II

porlex mini coffee grinder

Porlex Mini II

The Porlex Mini II is ideal for travelers, hikers, or campers who love their coffee. Assuming the style of coffee you love is AeroPress, pour over, or French press.

It isn’t accurate enough for espresso and the 20g capacity means its really only for single serve purposes.

But its small, its light, and with the new stabilized burrs and improved grind speed, its a high-quality budget option for the road.

Its such good value that you could have it purely as a travel grinder with a dedicated option to use at home.

Pros

  • Good grind consistency at medium to coarse grind sizes
  • Compact size, fits inside an Aeropress
  • High quality ceramic conical burrs
  • Very fast grinding
  • Stainless steel body
  • Very light, ideal for travel

Cons

  • Single serve capacity only
  • Can’t grind fine enough for espresso

Average Rating

  • Grind Consistency: 8/10
  • Range of Grind Sizes: 7/10
  • Ease of Use: 8/10
  • Best for: AeroPress
  • Overall Rating: 8.5/10
key features icon

Key Features

1. Stabilized Ceramic Burrs

Ceramic burrs stay sharper for longer than stainless steel ones and reduce heat build-up during grinding, this preserves more of the volatile oils that add so much flavor to the coffee.

The Mini II has upgraded the stabilization of the burrs by adding 3 notches to the outside of the outer burr. These attach it to the body of the grinder more securely making it a lot smoother for you to use.

2. Stainless Steel Body

A sturdy stainless steel exterior makes the Porlex Mini II durable enough to be chucked in your backpack and generally bounced about without damaging the grinder mechanism. We accidentally dropped ours and watched in horror as it bounced off into the trees. But it survived to tell the tale and get some much-needed caffeine in us!

Porlex Mini II on wooden table beside its box
The Porlex Mini II is just 5.3 inches tall (13.5cm) with a 1.8 inch (4.5cm) circumference

3. Weighs only 10oz

If you’re going to be carrying a grinder around with you, you don’t want it to weigh you down. At only 10oz you’ll barely notice the extra weight, even when hiking or camping.

4. Fits Inside the AeroPress

If AeroPress is your preferred brewing method, then this is a brilliant feature:

Your whole coffee setup can be fully self-contained making life easier and less messy, particularly when on the go. Plus it adds an extra layer of protection to your grinder. Just make all the parts are securely fitted so they don’t come loose inside the AeroPress.

5. 20g Bean Capacity

Yes, it is tiny – it’s called the Porlex MINI after all. But you can easily grind 1 person’s worth of coffee (20g/ 0.7oz), whatever brewing method you use.

Top down view of the Polex Mini II - the lid is removed so you can see that it's filled with coffee beans
Can grind enough coffee for 1 person at a time
ease of use icon

Ease of Use

The upgraded burrs on the Porlex Mini II make grinding easier and faster. As with all manual coffee grinders you still have to put some work in to get your grounds. But it’s noticeably easier on this model than the previous one.

Finer grind settings are harder work than coarser ones but this grinder isn’t suitable for espresso so you shouldn’t be grinding so fine that it becomes really tough to crank the handle.

There still aren’t numbers or markings to track the settings on the grind adjustment dial which is frustrating.

It’s particularly irritating if you want to change between brewing methods frequently. In this case, you’re better off taking it back to zero and then counting the clicks up to where you need to be. The full range is only 24 clicks so it shouldn’t take you too long.

We found that 6-12 clicks from 0 was a good range for AeroPress, 8-15 for pour over, and 14-22 for French press. But this will depend on your beans and personal preference.

Grind Adjustment Dial on the Porlex Mini
design and build quality icon

Design and Build Quality

Simple and functional designs are what Porlex specializes in. All of their hand grinders are built to last, made in their factory in Kagoshima, Japan.

The Mini II measures 5.3″ tall by 1.8″ in diameter, without the handle attached. Truly deserving of its “mini” name.

Even for a manual grinder, this is very small. There have been improvements to the already sturdy build quality on the Mini II as well.

The pentagonal nut on the top of the original Mini was susceptible to wear and tear, eventually rendering it useless as the handle would no longer attach. This has been replaced with a flat-wing nut, which also suffers from wear and tear but not in a way that affects the use of the grinder.

This nut has been given a slight counterclockwise spiral. This means that while turning the handle clockwise there is no way the handle can detach unexpectedly.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s not going to win any beauty contests. But the small build upgrades are a big improvement over the original Porlex Mini grinder, making it much more durable to stand the test of time.

Porlex Mini hand grinder with handle secured into the side
ground coffee icon

Grind Consistency of the Porlex Mini II

The new stabilization of the outer ceramic burr has greatly improved the grind consistency of the Porlex Mini II over its predecessor.

It’s really not precise enough at the finest settings to use as a serious espresso grinder, though if you have pressurized (double-walled) baskets for your machine then it will probably do just fine.

Where the Mini II really excels is in the AeroPress and pour over range of grind settings. It also does a good job with French press but the consistency starts to deteriorate as you grind very coarse.

Ceramic burrs stay sharper for longer than stainless steel. But you do need to take care not to chip them. Nothing other than coffee beans should go in as a chip in the burrs will render them useless to you.

Close up of a replacement ceramic burr for the Porlex Mini

Want a manual grinder but not sold on the Porlex Mini II? Check out our top picks for all occasions

clean icon

Cleaning and Maintenance

It’s very important to clean your grinder weekly. This stops the build-up of coffee grounds in the burrs and mechanisms that can ruin the taste of your next brew. Thankfully it’s very simple to dismantle, wipe the burrs clean with a soft brush, then reassemble.

It shouldn’t take more than 10 minutes total and there aren’t lots of pieces to keep track of, which is always a bonus when dismantling a grinder.

Whilst having to take apart and clean your grinder is a pain, it’s necessary no matter which type of grinder you have. So having the process as simple as possible is the best you can hope for.

Porlex Mini that has been easily taken apart for cleaning
versus icon

Porlex Mini II vs Porlex Tall II

Porlex doesn’t mess around when it comes to naming their coffee grinders. The Porlex Tall II is a taller version of the Porlex Mini II. It is essentially exactly the same grinder in terms of burrs and mechanism, but taller.

Obviously, the taller aspect of the grinder is not purely aesthetic. It also means a higher capacity for beans – 30g vs 20g on the Mini II.

It is a little over 1.5 inches taller at 7″. So it won’t fit inside your AeroPress anymore but it can hold enough beans for 2 coffees, that is the trade-off.

It also doesn’t have the rubber sleeve for some reason. Whilst it’s certainly not an essential component, I find the rubber sleeve helps with grip so it’s a shame to see it go.

I don’t feel the extra 10g grinding capacity is really worth it but if you really don’t want to grind twice to get up to 30g of ground coffee, then the Porlex Tall II is the grinder for you.

Porlex Tall II beside Mini II to show the size difference
Left: Tall II – Check Price
Right: Mini II – Check Price
final thoughts icon

Final Thoughts

If you are looking to freshly grind your coffee on the go, Porlex has created a superb grinder for you.

The small upgrades over the original Mini make a big difference in the grind consistency and the durability of the grinder. Both very important.

Its small size and affordable price tag means it could be ideal as a “travel grinder” to use on hikes, while camping, or on business trips. Leaving your other, heavier, coffee gear at home but not compromising on a great cup of joe.

Whilst it isn’t ideal if you’re an espresso fanatic, it performs well for all other types of coffee makers.

When updating our Porlex Mini Review for the Mini II, we were impressed by how much of a difference the small changes made to the overall grinding experience. Overall, this is a really impressive compact manual grinder.

Don’t forget to Buy Your Porlex Mini II Today

hce-author-box__avatar

Matt Woodburn-Simmonds

Matt's coffee obsession started in 2006 when working as a Barista. A tendency to turn up to work hungover kickstarted his coffee journey which quickly turned into a love affair. As he moved on to work as a Restaurant Manager and Sommelier, the obsession continued to grow. Now, his passion is helping others to enjoy better coffee at home.

You Might Also Like