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Aerobie Aeropress
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dcrehr
Senior Member


Joined: 14 Feb 2002
Posts: 5
Location: Los Angeles
Expertise: Intermediate

Posted Wed Dec 14, 2005, 8:44pm
Subject: Re: Aerobie Aeropress
 

I got one of these makers (bought it on eBay) and it arrived yesterday. I was more than pleasantly surprised. This is really good coffee... though it may not appeal to those who insist on scalding hot brew.

The filter issue:  it comes with a "year's supply" of filters.  I'm not quite sure how many. But the thing is... you can re-use the damn things! The instructions even tell you you can. They're just flat discs, easy to rinse... and I see no reason to  break out a new one until the existing one tears. I doubt I will ever run out, given the generous supply that comes with the machine.

Temperature: the makers advocate 165-175 degree brewing temperature. I personally have long believed the orthodoxy of 195-205 is not for me. Various "hot" brewing methods (including French Press) often result in what, for me, tastes "scalded."  However, you better heat the mug into which you press your coffee with this, or it may be too cool for you.

Truthfully, I only had time to use the thing twice today. But it was really really goooood coffee. I guess the combination of lower brew temp together with the gentle pressure of the plunger, plus the fine filter is enough to produce a product that is different from all the other methods I have tried.

Search for it online if you're interested.  I don't have any personal interest in the company (same people who make various Frisbee-like toys & whatnot).

DR
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JPR
Senior Member


Joined: 29 Dec 2005
Posts: 13
Location: New Jersey
Expertise: I live coffee

Posted Thu Dec 29, 2005, 2:07pm
Subject: Re: Aerobie Aeropress
 

I've been playing with an Aeropress the last couple of days. I got it thinking it was an improved press. It's not.  I've had very mixed results.

First, the recommended temperature is just too low. Because the volume of water used is so low compared to the amount of grounds, the water is probably cooled down to room temeprature soon after it hits the grounds. I've gotten much better results with 190 degree water.

All of my trials have been as Americanos.

The positive is that it does generate a very concentrated coffee, at about the same strenght as espresso. So this should be good for milk drinks. And it generates an almost dry puck and is very easy to clean up.

The first coffee I tried is a home-roasted espresso blend that gives a very sweet, smooth espresso out of my machine. But it made a horrendously bad coffee with the press. Totally bland and with some off-notes. All trace of acidity gone. I'm not a big fan of high acid coffees, but this was too far in the other direction.

It reminded me of the cold extracts that were popular in the 70s. That's where
You grind up some coffee, add cold water, let it sit a few hours and then filter out the grounds. You'd then add hot water to the concentrate to make coffee as needed. Horrible stuff.

Increasing the temperature helped some, but it was still bad.

I performed all the other trials at higher temps, around 190 degrees.

Next I tried a very good Batdorf & Bronson Yirg - from their Latitudes offerings. This made a very nice Americano with the press. Unfortunately, it wasn't quite as good as what I can get from a simple manual drip. Probably due to the press over-muting the acid.

Since the press muted the coffee so much, I decided to try it on some "bold" coffee. I got some Cafe Verona from Starbucks and tried it. Not bad, but hard to tell if it was any better than what I would get with a drip, other than the press muted the (to me) over-roasted flavor of the coffee.
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b512
Senior Member


Joined: 27 Jan 2005
Posts: 520
Location: Calif.
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Bialetti
Grinder: Capresso Infinity
Vac Pot: Yama,Cory
Drip: Presto,KMB
Roaster: None
Posted Thu Dec 29, 2005, 5:49pm
Subject: Re: Aerobie Aeropress
 

Peter:
  Much enjoyed your comments on the Aeropress. Unusually for me,I've been holding off on ordering one,mostly because of questions about the cost and availability of filters.
 However,your comments regarding blandness and a lack of acidity interest me a great deal,as this would bother me too. You certainly sound like a man of taste who knows whereof he speaks. Yet,as we both know,tastes vary a great deal,and there have been several rave reviews.
 I do hope that we will get a number of further posts on this critter.
 Since I had a hunch that there might be,if not problems,at least questions as you describe,I think I'll continue to hold off until we hear from a few others,perhaps disputing your view,or perhaps supporting it.
                                 Regards,
                                     Barry
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Rawman
Senior Member
Rawman
Joined: 14 Jun 2003
Posts: 1,034
Location: SF Bay Area, CA
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: 2002 Cremina, Elektra MKAL,...
Grinder: Mazzer Mini
Vac Pot: Silex Vintage Vac Pot
Drip: Bodum chambord FP, Melitta...
Roaster: HotTop, Buzzroaster,  HG/DB
Posted Thu Dec 29, 2005, 7:15pm
Subject: Re: Aerobie Aeropress
 

I picked one up at a local store today (I live about 8 miles from AerobieŽ so 2 local stores carry the device) and will be checking it out.  Any suggestions on coffee to water ratios to start out with?  Or is everyone just using the scoop that came with it?  As for the filters, it comes with 350 and they plan to sell filters in Jan of 2006.  The company said the product has only been on the market just 6 weeks so it may be too early to be looking for the filters yet.  It also says that you can re use the filter by washing it out and letting it dry.  Haven't used it yet so I can't comment on that.

 
Rawman the Expobarbarian..
AKA the Original Jon R.
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b512
Senior Member


Joined: 27 Jan 2005
Posts: 520
Location: Calif.
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Bialetti
Grinder: Capresso Infinity
Vac Pot: Yama,Cory
Drip: Presto,KMB
Roaster: None
Posted Thu Dec 29, 2005, 7:34pm
Subject: Re: Aerobie Aeropress
 

Ion:
 Looking forward to your thoughts after you've used it a bit.
                                Barry
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JPR
Senior Member


Joined: 29 Dec 2005
Posts: 13
Location: New Jersey
Expertise: I live coffee

Posted Fri Dec 30, 2005, 6:34am
Subject: Re: Aerobie Aeropress
 

Regarding filters - I just don't think they will be an issue. As noted, it comes with over 300 of them and you can at least mail order more from the company.

More important, they are very easy to reuse. As a test, I've been reusing a filter. I've now used it more than 6 times without a problem. it doesn't even really add to the cleanup.  I just peel it off the coffee puck when I'm cleaning up, rinse it off, and lay it on the filter holder. It's still going stong.

I'm still trying the press. I find I still like the flavor with the more "robust" and darker coffees  (except for my espresso blend, which I had roasted to the dark side of "full city" or a very light Vienna).

It's interesting that I noticed off-notes with the espresso blend I use. It's half SM's "Monkey Blend" and half  decaf Mogiana Brazilian. I'm betting there's a small touch of robusta in the Monkey's Blend and that is coming though with the off tastes ( wet cardboard). I haven't noticed these off tastes with the other coffees.

This morning I tried some of the last of the Geisha Panama from B&B's "Latitudes". This is an amazing coffee with stong acid, roasted to a light "full city" or maybe just "city".  It has almost turned me into an acid lover. It was very, very good in the press, but again, not  as good as a manual drip or even as a single origin espresso. It's acid was, of course, muted, and I think some of the high notes lost, although that could be because the coffee is getting old.

As I said, I've been grinding just a little coarser than espresso and using 190 degree water. maybe slightly hotter water or a different grind would improve mattters. Also, the recommended amounts of grounds is double what I would use for the same volume of espresso - 14 grams for a 1.25 oz of extraction. So it's going to use up a lot of coffee and deliver a lot of caffeine per shot.

I've been making singles and doubles with the press. A possible problem I've noted is that if you make 4 "cups" at once, there is very little head room for bloom, so the press might overflow when you add water. I'll have to try that and see.

I haven't really decided about this device. It makes OK coffee and does work to make single shots. It's quick and easy to use. But is it really that much quicker or easier than a single cup manual drip? I guess it's main use would be a simple method to make shots intense enough for milk drinks.

-Peter
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AlanAdler
Senior Member
AlanAdler
Joined: 31 Dec 2005
Posts: 719
Location: Palo Alto, Calif
Expertise: Professional

Espresso: AeroPress
Grinder: Baratza - Virtuoso
Roaster: Fresh Roast SR-500
Posted Sat Dec 31, 2005, 7:41pm
Subject: Re: Aerobie Aeropress
 

Hello Everybody,

This is my first posting to this forum.   I'm the inventor/developer of the AeroPress.

First of all, I'd like to encourage everyone to post questions about the AeroPress and I'll try to respond to them.   I've been using the AeroPress for nearly two years and have learned a few things along the way.

Replacement filters retail for $3.50 per package of 350 filters.   We have them now, and will begin shipping them to the online retailers in the first week of January.  I personally re-use each filter about twenty times.   I find it's about as easy to rinse and re-use a filter (with a few wipes of a brush under the faucet) as it is to load a new one.   After rinsing the plunger and filter, I fully withdraw the plunger from the chamber and put the rinsed wet filter into the cap and twist the cap onto the chamber.   That way it's all ready for me the next time I brew.  You can use it wet or dry.

The filters are made from the same paper used in premium cone filters.  Before we started production, I cut AeroPress filters from cone filters.  I folded a cone in half and drew a 2.50" diameter circle.  Then I cut it out with a scissors, and the result was four AeroPress filter discs.

With regard to temperature.  We're proud of the fact that you have the freedom to use any temperature and brew time you wish with AeroPress.   We recommend 175F because all the professional cuppers, including Kenneth Davids, preferred that in blind tasting tests.  But our tests were with double shots.   It's possible that a slightly higher temperature would be preferred for singles due to the smaller amount of hot water in the chamber.  

With a double shot and 175F water, the finished brew exits the AeroPress at about 145F.   That's about the ideal drinking temperature and you can preserve this with a pre-heated mug.

With a conventional espresso machine, most people agree that it's easier to make a good double than a single.   That's somewhat true for the AeroPress too, but if singles are your preference, I recommend that you try a fine grind and perhaps slightly higher temperature.  It also helps to pour the water in slowly to prevent it from boring a hole right through the bed of coffee.

My favorite grind is espresso grind for singles and fine-drip grind for doubles and larger.  If you press down on the plunger with about fifteen pounds of pressure, filtering will take about ten to fifteen seconds for each scoop of that grind.  Coarser grinds will go through faster, and the brew will be a bit weaker.

Uniform grinds press through easiest.  Non-uniform grinds tend to clog the flow somewhat with dust.   I just got a new Baratza Virtuoso and love it.  It makes the most uniform grind I've ever seen.   I also love the fact that it retains less than a half gram of residual grind.   Many espresso grinders retain about five grams!  

I like to measure my beans into the grinder with our scoop,  then grind them all and use our funnel to feed the entire contents of the hopper into the AeroPress chamber.

Regarding coffee, many espresso blends are milder and smoother than regular (non-espresso) blends.  With the inherrent smoothness of the AeroPress process, it's possible that you'll prefer regular blends.   But by all means experiment, and let us know what works best.

Happy New Year to All

Alan Adler
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b512
Senior Member


Joined: 27 Jan 2005
Posts: 520
Location: Calif.
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Bialetti
Grinder: Capresso Infinity
Vac Pot: Yama,Cory
Drip: Presto,KMB
Roaster: None
Posted Sat Dec 31, 2005, 8:01pm
Subject: Re: Aerobie Aeropress
 

AlanAdler Said:

Hello Everybody,

This is my first posting to this forum.   I'm the inventor/developer of the AeroPress.

First of all, I'd like to encourage everyone to post questions about the AeroPress and I'll try to respond to them.   I've been using the AeroPress for nearly two years and have learned a few things along the way.

Replacement filters retail for $3.50 per package of 350 filters.   We have them now, and will begin shipping them to the online retailers in the first week of January.  I personally re-use each filter about twenty times.   I find it's about as easy to rinse and re-use a filter (with a few wipes of a brush under the faucet) as it is to load a new one.   After rinsing the plunger and filter, I fully withdraw the plunger from the chamber and put the rinsed wet filter into the cap and twist the cap onto the chamber.   That way it's all ready for me the next time I brew.  You can use it wet or dry.

The filters are made from the same paper used in premium cone filters.  Before we started production, I cut AeroPress filters from cone filters.  I folded a cone in half and drew a 2.50" diameter circle.  Then I cut it out with a scissors, and the result was four AeroPress filter discs.

With regard to temperature.  We're proud of the fact that you have the freedom to use any temperature and brew time you wish with AeroPress.   We recommend 175F because all the professional cuppers, including Kenneth Davids, preferred that in blind tasting tests.  But our tests were with double shots.   It's possible that a slightly higher temperature would be preferred for singles due to the smaller amount of hot water in the chamber.  

With a double shot and 175F water, the finished brew exits the AeroPress at about 145F.   That's about the ideal drinking temperature and you can preserve this with a pre-heated mug.

With a conventional espresso machine, most people agree that it's easier to make a good double than a single.   That's somewhat true for the AeroPress too, but if singles are your preference, I recommend that you try a fine grind and perhaps slightly higher temperature.  It also helps to pour the water in slowly to prevent it from boring a hole right through the bed of coffee.

My favorite grind is espresso grind for singles and fine-drip grind for doubles and larger.  If you press down on the plunger with about fifteen pounds of pressure, filtering will take about ten to fifteen seconds for each scoop of that grind.  Coarser grinds will go through faster, and the brew will be a bit weaker.

Uniform grinds press through easiest.  Non-uniform grinds tend to clog the flow somewhat with dust.   I just got a new Baratza Virtuoso and love it.  It makes the most uniform grind I've ever seen.   I also love the fact that it retains less than a half gram of residual grind.   Many espresso grinders retain about five grams!  

I like to measure my beans into the grinder with our scoop,  then grind them all and use our funnel to feed the entire contents of the hopper into the AeroPress chamber.

Regarding coffee, many espresso blends are milder and smoother than regular (non-espresso) blends.  With the inherrent smoothness of the AeroPress process, it's possible that you'll prefer regular blends.   But by all means experiment, and let us know what works best.

Happy New Year to All

Alan Adler

Posted December 31, 2005 link

 Alan:
  How kind and wise it was of you to post to our forum. While I recognise the self interest,it was a good thing to do,and the "straight from the shoulder" information is greatly appreciated. I think others will feel the same way.
 I will order one of your brewers tomorrow.
                                    Happy New Year,      
                                       Barry
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Schwa
Senior Member


Joined: 2 Apr 2004
Posts: 17
Location: Bayonne, NJ
Expertise: I love coffee

Grinder: Solis Maestro +
Vac Pot: B&D Infuze
Drip: Technovorm
Roaster: Alp, HG
Posted Sat Dec 31, 2005, 8:55pm
Subject: Re: Aerobie Aeropress
 

Alan,
     I received my Aeropress today. Out of the box I am impressed with it's Quality. It feels like it is indestructable. I made a single press of a Brazillian Yellow Bourbon. It was tasty but, I am not an espresso drinker so I can't say how it compares. I am looking forward to playing with this thing. I might suggest that you include your thoughts about bean selection with the unit.
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DavidMLewis
Senior Member


Joined: 2 Jan 2002
Posts: 88
Location: Santa Cruz, CA, USA
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Reneka Techno
Grinder: Versalab M3
Vac Pot: Hario Nouveau, Infuze
Drip: Clever
Roaster: Hottop, HWP
Posted Mon Jan 9, 2006, 7:34am
Subject: Re: Aerobie Aeropress
 

Happyboy Said:

Anyone know of any eastern US distributors?

Posted December 14, 2005 link

http://www.coffeebeancorral.com/ in North Carolina.

Best,
   David
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