twalker294 Senior Member Joined: 2 Jan 2006 Posts: 39 Location: Louisiana, USA Expertise: I love coffee
Espresso: Aeropress Grinder: Solis Maestro Classic Vac Pot: Bodum Columbia FP
Posted Sun Jan 22, 2006, 2:30am Subject: Re: Aerobie Aeropress
I have been following the threads here on the Aeropress and I ordered mine on Friday. A quick question about water temp -- I use a Melitta electric kettle to heat my water for the french press. The kettle shuts off automatically once it boils. How long should I have to wait for it to cool off before it reaches the target temp of 165-175?
Second, I will likely be using it to make Americano primarily (although I will definitely experiment with espresso as well.) I make about 1.25 liters in my FP. Will the Aeropress make enough concentrate to make about the same volume of Americano and if not, how much will it make? What is the ratio of espresso concentrate to hot water that I should use for a good robust Americano?
Posted Sun Jan 22, 2006, 3:23am Subject: Re: Aerobie Aeropress
A good robust Americano is probably at least Brix=2. Three AeroPress scoops of grind (about 35g) will make about 400cc of brew total at Brix=2.
You can also try a quadruple, but use slightly hotter water because all the grind will cool the water. In that case you can make about 530cc of brew.
Because of the inherrent smoothness of AeroPress brew, many people prefer an even stronger Brix than they would with a French press. If, for example, you find that you like Brix=3, then three scoops would make about 270cc of brew, or four scoops about 350cc.
You can learn more about Brix strength from my post here:
In the above post I gave a formula for the AeroPress:
Brix is approximately equal to 23 times (coffee weight) / (water weight)
To answer your question I transformed that to:
water weight is approximately equal to 23 times (coffee weight) / Brix
1.25 liters will require several pressings. But each one only takes about a minute. The same would be true with a conventional espresso machine.
You can cool the boiling water by filling the plunger up to about 80% from the kettle, then adding a little cold water. In this case you are using the plunger as a mixing and pouring cup. Of course an ordinary measuring cup will work too.
I look forward to feedback, after you've tried this.
Posted Sun Jan 22, 2006, 10:32am Subject: Re: Aerobie Aeropress
Yes, I do make tea in the AeroPress.
To make coffee, the coffee and hot water are stirred together right in the AeroPress chamber. But with tea, the water runs through too fast because there is too little tea and it's much looser than a bed of coffee.
So I simply stir the tea and hot water together in a measuring cup and let it steep for about a minute. Then I pour the slurry into the AeroPress and press it through. The result a very clean tea.
To make a reasonable portion of tea in the small AeroPress chamber, I brew it very strong, then dilute it after pressing - like the tea equivalent of an Americano.
Incidentally, tea experts will tell you the same trick that I've learned for coffee brewing; that is to use water at about 175F rather than boiling (212F). Both tea and coffee taste best at that temperature.
Posted Mon Jan 23, 2006, 1:00pm Subject: Re: Aerobie Aeropress
My Aeropress arrived, but I only had time for 2 pressings. Both times I made iced lattes, and they were extremely smooth. I never liked the sediment of my French Press, and with this device there is absolutely none.
This is also the first time I brewed coffee while paying attention to temperature. Before, with my French Press, I would get the kettle running first so that by the time I was ready it had turned off and been sitting for a minute or so. That was still probably way too hot.
So this time I boiled water to 175 F. I used regular Starbucks beans in a blade grinder. My burr grinder is in the mail. I preheated the plunger and the tube since they were quite cold. It made a pretty good press! Comparable to drinks I buy from Starbucks, but a bit smoother. Since I was making a latte I might try a higher temp next time so it has more edge.
My only concern was the water leaking out before being plunged. It wasn't as bad the second time when I dribbled the water in slowly to wet the grinds. I might try two filters next time.
I'm probably going to do a full review and post it to my blog later.
Posted Mon Jan 23, 2006, 7:07pm Subject: Re: Aerobie Aeropress
I'm glad that you like your new AeroPress.
The small amount that drips through the bed prior to pressing isn't significant. You can prove that to yourself by making two pressings. One standard, and a second by moving the AeroPress to a new cup just before pressing. I predict that they'll both taste rich and smooth.
Posted Mon Jan 23, 2006, 9:55pm Subject: Re: Aerobie Aeropress
When I switched from the Baratza Maestro Plus to the Baratza Virtuoso, the first thing I noticed was that the Virtuoso grind uniformity was the best Iíd ever seen. Its total lack of fine dust allowed easier pressings with no reduction in brew strength (as measured with my Brix meter). The Virtuoso is also faster and quieter. But my Maestro Plus is still an excellent grinder.
The AeroPress is not grind-critical and I did not detect a difference in taste between the two. But Iíve heard that with espresso machines, which are more grind-critical, the Virtuoso tastes especially good.
Both of my Baratza grinders retain only about a half-gram of residual grind. I measure whole beans into the grinder with the AeroPress scoop, then grind and brew it all. So I really appreciate Baratzaís low residual.
I measured five grams residual with the latest model Kitchen Aid Pro Line that I tested two months ago. Iíve read other reviews which reported that the Mazzer and Rocky also retain five grams. That's too much for my taste.
Incidentally, I returned the Kitchen Aid because it didnít grind fine enough. On its finest (espresso) setting it was still coarser than proper drip grind and the Brix brew strength was only 77% of drip grind. Yet despite being too coarse, there was enough fine dust to make pressing slow.
Iíve also tested some inexpensive burr grinders which had similar shortcomings.
It seems to me that the AeroPress is just as sensitive as espresso is to the quality of the grinder. When I use it with a Zass Turkish, I don't get the brightness and aromatics that I do when I use a Capresso Infinity. The latter allows me to use a much finer grind without blocking the filter, and produces, to my taste, a far superior brew.
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