Friday, February 8, 2013

Aeropress.. The Indispensable Coffee Gadget ??

I had a Aeropress send to me by the Danish distributor Øristeriet.

I have never tried an Aeropress, but I have read a lot on several coffee boards. I have actually never read anything bad about the device. Therefore I must admit my expectations are relatively high.

"The AeroPress is a device for brewing coffee. It was invented in 2005 by Aerobie president Alan Adler. Coffee is forced through a filter by pressing the plunger through the tube. The filters used are either the AeroPress paper filters or disc shaped thin metal filters. The device consists of two copolyester cylinders. One cylinder has a rubber plunger and fits inside the larger cylinder to create an airtight seal, similar to a syringe."

Opening the box: 
It looks very simple. All the parts are in the box, according to the manual.

One thing that comes to mind right away is this text:

With no knowledge of the Aeropress (AP) I can tell that it’s a lie. Espresso is made under 9bars of pressure. STOP calling strong coffee espresso. 

With that out of the system, it’s on to the manual.
The manual are very straightforward, describing how to brew, clean and a guide to the webpage with videos. No more than you need. I like that.


I have read ahead before receiving the device, and found some of the brewing methods I would like to try out. But before doing so, I tried the method provided by Aerobi. Video by Aerobi
I wouldn’t recommend this method.
There are some simple steps to do before even brewing that makes a significantly difference to the taste and brewing process. Besides that, I just don’t think it provides a good cup of coffee. But try it yourself; taste is different for all of us.

In the following methods I follow this procedure do to every brew:

Pre heat the entire device under hot water, especially the rubber end of the plunger. This makes the whole pressing phase a lot easier, and the seal tighter.

Soak the paper filter in plenty of water. There a lots of tang in the filters, soaking the filter washes them and other unappealing tastes out.   

I have been working with three different brew methods, all of them I have tried with different grind settings. The grind setting and extraction time, has very big influence in the taste of the coffee using an AP. The ones I write down are with the settings I find the best. I have been using two different coffees also provided by Øristeriet, these will be reviewed in another post. Bottom line is that no matter which bean I have been using, the grind setting should be the same to extract the best brew.

Method one:   
13g coffee, ground coarser than drip, but slight finer than French-press.

Place the AP upside-down.
Add 220g water. I like it best at approximately 80C. Make sure to add the water in small circles soaking all of the ground beans (this applies to all three methods).
Leave to brew for three minutes.
Stir for 20 seconds.
Leave it for 40 seconds.

Add the plunger and press down. 
But when you hear a wheezing sound, stop the press, from now on it’s all bitter. Try to get the press to last for 25 seconds (this applies for all three methods).
This way you should get a firm, and strong coffee, I think it’s fairly bitter. It suits me well in the morning.

Method two:
17g coffee, ground as with drip. Place the AP upside-down. Add 220g water.
Stir for 10 seconds. Leave to brew for 30 seconds. Add the plunger and press down.
This method provides a very clean cup. All the volatile notes are preserved, and there are very low bitterness. This is my favorite.

Method three:
14g coffee, ground slightly coarser than drip.
Place the AP downside-down.
Add 220g water.
Place the plunger to stop the brew from dripping.
Leave to brew for 45 seconds.
Stir quickly, replace plunger and press down.

This method is somewhat in the middle. It also provides a very rich and clean cup, but with a little bitterness. It’s a little more difficult because of the downside-down method.


This is just some of the things I have tried. I think there is endless possibilities to the AP, shifting just one of the parameters a bit changes the entire cup. This I also what makes the AP so much fun.

Sum up:

Reading the quotes on the box, all super positive from significant coffee people in the world, 
leaves you with a; “okay, easy now” feeling. But I have to admit, the AP has changed my entire perspective of black coffee. Being used to French-press and espresso, it’s a lot of fun being able to change the entire flavor by just extracting for another 10 seconds, and still get a good cup from it.

This is defiantly becoming my everyday brew method.

Especially in the morning the AP is amazing. In the early morning I add a bit more coffee, brewing 
a bit longer, and I get the feeling of a strong cup, waking me up. In the later morning hours, I do it the other way around and get a clean cup with super balance.
Beside the ability to control so many things easily, it’s very quick to clean, which is also a great benefit.

Youtube provides numerous videos and how-to’s, also the World Championship is worth watching.
I think it’s amazing, and defiantly here to stay. Still haven’t heard about or met anyone who was disappointed with their AP.   

Do enjoy this wonderful coffee equipment. With the low price versus brilliant opportunities it’s a must buy. 

Again a big thanks to www.Ø for supplying the device for a test.  

1 comment:

  1. I've had an Aeropress for almost a year now, and started looking into the championship methods about 4 months ago. Definitely started using it more after that. The method I've been using is cobbled from a few incomplete ones, mainly because I found it written down in the box where I keep it.

    Going to have to try out the ones you posted!