Conclusion, For Now
One of the great joys of my job here at CoffeeGeek is that I get to discover and use exceptional products. For years and years, I was used to the idea that, if I wanted a quality hand grinder, I had to go with something from Orphan Espresso and their huge and heavy Lido models. The OE Lido does set a high bar on quality output, but it’s not exactly a good travel solution.
For a $85ish product (you can actually get it for as low as $50 if you really hunt around the Internet), the Timemore Chestnut C2 – Timemore’s entry level hand grinder – sets a very high bar. It blows away anything Hario is producing. It puts the originator – the Porlex Mini – to shame. The Chestnut C2 is more in line with competing products that cost $150, $200 and more.
It’s not the lightest weight hand grinder. It is too big to fit inside an Aeropress plunger (the Porlex famously can do that); it isn’t ideal for espresso (though a burr upgrade will fix that). But it’s a pleasure to use, fast to grind, and produces a fantastic grind for drip, pour over, siphon, cloth brewing, Chemex, Aeropress, and press pot.