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Discussions > Espresso > Machines > Aeropress, Moka,...  
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scanfield
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Joined: 21 Nov 2011
Posts: 181
Location: Texas
Expertise: I like coffee

Espresso: La Nuovo Era Cuadra
Grinder: Baratza Vario
Posted Wed Jan 16, 2013, 9:06am
Subject: Re: Aeropress, Moka, or Chemex?
 

emradguy Said:

yeah, I guess if you're going to call it eXpresso, you can use the name for any strong coffee.

Posted January 16, 2013 link

Expresso is a very common variant of the word "espresso" and not just a misspelling. In a specialist forum like this, it's incorrect (for now) but in the outside world it's common enough that it is recognized by most dictionaries as just a less common name for the drink we call espresso.

The meaning of English words is determined by the context they are used in and it's possible that one day "expresso" will be more correct (or common) than "espresso".
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emradguy
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emradguy
Joined: 31 Mar 2011
Posts: 3,305
Location: Houston
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Duetto II; Twist v2
Grinder: M Major, Macap M4, Pharos,...
Drip: Espro presses; Aeropress
Roaster: H-B "List of Favorites"
Posted Wed Jan 16, 2013, 9:10am
Subject: Re: Aeropress, Moka, or Chemex?
 

this discussion reminds me of ebonics.

 
.
Always remember the most important thing is what ends up in your cup!
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uRabbit
Senior Member


Joined: 15 Jan 2013
Posts: 53
Location: Seattle, WA
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Silvia V3 + PID
Grinder: Baratza Vario, Hario Mini
Drip: Chemex, AeroPress, Wave,...
Posted Wed Jan 16, 2013, 11:55am
Subject: Re: Aeropress, Moka, or Chemex?
 

emradguy Said:

http://espressoitaliano.org/eic_en.asp?lang=en

from their site, there's a pdf, you'd probably be most interested in... http://espressoitaliano.org/doc/EIC%20-%20Eng%20-%20LQ.pdf

Posted January 16, 2013 link

I have opened Pandora's Box!

 
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Markarian
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Markarian
Joined: 27 Jun 2012
Posts: 658
Location: Seattle Area
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: ECM Technika IV Profi WT-WC
Grinder: Baratza Forte AP, HG One
Vac Pot: Bunn Trifecta MB
Drip: Moka, Aeropress, Hario V60
Roaster: Behmor 1600
Posted Wed Jan 16, 2013, 12:14pm
Subject: Re: Aeropress, Moka, or Chemex?
 

As I understand it, the word "espresso" was a term originally used in Italian cafes to refer to coffee that was brewed single serving for the customer, or rather "expressly for them." But yeah, Aeropress and Moka make a great coffee between drip and espresso, but it isn't a true espresso since you haven't invested thousands of dollars in a silver metal cube with an exposed brewhead yet.

Kidding aside, as much as we all like to protect our terms of art for the sake of pride, it really actually comes down to our concern about people getting confused and turned off from what they think of as true espresso. There are so many "steam espresso machines" out there, which just use steam pressure, like a Moka, to push water through the grounds. They were extremely popular in the early 90s and Goodwills are full of them. A lot of people still buy these, expecting to be able to make a true espresso at home. The end up missing out because what they get is much thinner, less complex, and lacking a buttery golden crema on top. It's kind of like the difference between getting a genuine malt at a diner and mixing a spoonfull of Ovaltine into your milk.

Espresso is expensive because it needs to be mechanized. It always has been, and even lever machines are still machines. However, still go grab one of those Radig Mokas, you won't be disappointed. Anything's better than good 'ol 1970s auto drip.
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uRabbit
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Joined: 15 Jan 2013
Posts: 53
Location: Seattle, WA
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Silvia V3 + PID
Grinder: Baratza Vario, Hario Mini
Drip: Chemex, AeroPress, Wave,...
Posted Wed Jan 16, 2013, 12:43pm
Subject: Re: Aeropress, Moka, or Chemex?
 

Well, we do have our Delonghi, but it is quite inconsistent.

I am wondering if any of these methods will help to generate a better experience? Espresso (and these methods) are just that - an experience. We drink it for that reason. We don't like bitterness, of course. Which is typically from slow brew methods like drip, yes? Yet I have heard people say the Chemex produces a great full bodied cup.

We love nutty, roasty flavours. Espresso's flavour spectrum lines up perfectly with what we enjoy.

Do these other three methods help to get that?

 
Purista Coffee Co. - Blog, Reviews, Culture, More.
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svyerkgeniiy
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Joined: 14 Dec 2006
Posts: 380
Location: New York City, NY
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: (-ish) Bialetti moka pot
Grinder: Baratza Preciso
Vac Pot: Yama (large 8-cup)
Drip: Technivorm KBT; Clever...
Roaster: Behmor 1600
Posted Wed Jan 16, 2013, 1:38pm
Subject: Re: Aeropress, Moka, or Chemex?
 

uRabbit Said:

I am wondering if any of these methods will help to generate a better experience? Espresso (and these methods) are just that - an experience. We drink it for that reason. We don't like bitterness, of course. Which is typically from slow brew methods like drip, yes? Yet I have heard people say the Chemex produces a great full bodied cup.

We love nutty, roasty flavours. Espresso's flavour spectrum lines up perfectly with what we enjoy.

Do these other three methods help to get that?

Posted January 16, 2013 link

You can make bad coffee by just about any method.  There are too many variables involved.  Bad coffee can be caused by:
  • bad beans
  • stale (but formerly good) beans
  • bad-tasting water
  • wrong water temps
  • wrong grind
  • wrong brew time

To name a few.  (The "bad beans" part is a whole series of possibilities for failure in itself.)  You can cause any of those in any brewing method there is.  And I find descriptions like "smooth" and "full bodied" to be confusing, because they don't describe much to me other than attributes of the bean itself, not the coffee maker or method.  Even "nutty" and "roasty" are attributes of the bean itself after it's roasted.

I am not trying to dismiss your question, however, nor to criticize your way of asking.  I believe you want to have an enjoyable, tasty experience tailored to your preferences, so I think I understand your goal here.  My feedback on those methods you ask about:

Aeropress is a quick and forgiving method.  Because water recommendations are reduced, you get a more concentrated brew ("espresso like") so maybe what you like is stronger coffee.  Brews from Dunkin' Donuts or McDonald's are quite weak, usually as a means to cover up their low quality.  However, Aeropress makes only a limited amount of liquid, at most 8oz at a time.  Maybe that's enough for the two of you, maybe not.  With Aeropress you have control over all the variables: beans, grind, temp, brew time.

Moka pot is always a fixed-volume brewing.  Making less than a full pot is not recommended; that's why there are many sizes.  As someone else here encouraged, I also recommend a stainless steel pot; mine is 22oz.  The brew is also concentrated and has a different flavor profile than drip or the AP.  This is also my favorite method, when I have the time and inclination to make it-- half my time is spent disassembling and cleaning it from the previous day, although it goes through the dishwasher quite well.  With a moka pot, you don't have control over temps; you control brewing time by the level of the flame.

Chemex is more variable, like drip, and I've used this method the least.  This is a more involved method as you have to keep the water pouring in and infusing properly.  The papers are supposed to reduce bitterness, but I'm still experimenting and can't report a lot of personal feedback.

Ultimately, these are probably best for you as experiments anyway, to see what you like best.  None are individually expensive; AP is about $30, SS moka pots are about $40-60 depending on size, and Chemex are $40-$90 depending on size and type.  AP requires specialized but cheap filters; moka pots require occasional gasket replacement; Chemex requires filters that are about 7 or 8c each.  Both AP and Chemex can use permanent filters that cost more.  So why not try all three?  I have all three, I use all three (as well as several others).

 
Donald Varona
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Markarian
Senior Member
Markarian
Joined: 27 Jun 2012
Posts: 658
Location: Seattle Area
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: ECM Technika IV Profi WT-WC
Grinder: Baratza Forte AP, HG One
Vac Pot: Bunn Trifecta MB
Drip: Moka, Aeropress, Hario V60
Roaster: Behmor 1600
Posted Wed Jan 16, 2013, 2:04pm
Subject: Re: Aeropress, Moka, or Chemex?
 

Just run down to Ikea in Renton and grab a Radig Moka pot. It makes just enough for two, costs $19.99 and is stainless steel.
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uRabbit
Senior Member


Joined: 15 Jan 2013
Posts: 53
Location: Seattle, WA
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Silvia V3 + PID
Grinder: Baratza Vario, Hario Mini
Drip: Chemex, AeroPress, Wave,...
Posted Wed Jan 16, 2013, 3:03pm
Subject: Re: Aeropress, Moka, or Chemex?
 

svyerkgeniiy Said:

You can make bad coffee by just about any method.  There are too many variables involved.  Bad coffee can be caused by:
bad beans
stale (but formerly good) beans
bad-tasting water
wrong water temps
wrong grind
wrong brew time

To name a few.  (The "bad beans" part is a whole series of possibilities for failure in itself.)  You can cause any of those in any brewing method there is.  And I find descriptions like "smooth" and "full bodied" to be confusing, because they don't describe much to me other than attributes of the bean itself, not the coffee maker or method.  Even "nutty" and "roasty" are attributes of the bean itself after it's roasted.

I am not trying to dismiss your question, however, nor to criticize your way of asking.  I believe you want to have an enjoyable, tasty experience tailored to your preferences, so I think I understand your goal here.  My feedback on those methods you ask about:

Aeropress is a quick and forgiving method.  Because water recommendations are reduced, you get a more concentrated brew ("espresso like") so maybe what you like is stronger coffee.  Brews from Dunkin' Donuts or McDonald's are quite weak, usually as a means to cover up their low quality.  However, Aeropress makes only a limited amount of liquid, at most 8oz at a time.  Maybe that's enough for the two of you, maybe not.  With Aeropress you have control over all the variables: beans, grind, temp, brew time.

Moka pot is always a fixed-volume brewing.  Making less than a full pot is not recommended; that's why there are many sizes.  As someone else here encouraged, I also recommend a stainless steel pot; mine is 22oz.  The brew is also concentrated and has a different flavor profile than drip or the AP.  This is also my favorite method, when I have the time and inclination to make it-- half my time is spent disassembling and cleaning it from the previous day, although it goes through the dishwasher quite well.  With a moka pot, you don't have control over temps; you control brewing time by the level of the flame.

Chemex is more variable, like drip, and I've used this method the least.  This is a more involved method as you have to keep the water pouring in and infusing properly.  The papers are supposed to reduce bitterness, but I'm still experimenting and can't report a lot of personal feedback.

Ultimately, these are probably best for you as experiments anyway, to see what you like best.  None are individually expensive; AP is about $30, SS moka pots are about $40-60 depending on size, and Chemex are $40-$90 depending on size and type.  AP requires specialized but cheap filters; moka pots require occasional gasket replacement; Chemex requires filters that are about 7 or 8c each.  Both AP and Chemex can use permanent filters that cost more.  So why not try all three?  I have all three, I use all three (as well as several others).

Posted January 16, 2013 link

Well-composed reply. Thanks so much! It sounds like the Aeropress could provide what we are looking for. While I have priced all three methods together (which still come to less than $100 easily), I don't think it would be very cost-effective to get all three. Really, we want to get a filler for when we can afford a Rancilio Silvia (probably 2014 tax returns, as we are saving for the startup of our business in a few years).

Thank you for the information!

Markarian - Just trying to make an educated purchase is all. :)

Markarian Said:

Just run down to Ikea in Renton and grab a Radig Moka pot. It makes just enough for two, costs $19.99 and is stainless steel.

Posted January 16, 2013 link


 
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http://puristacoffeeco.com/ | thepuristas@puristacoffeeco.com
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zapped
Senior Member


Joined: 9 Sep 2011
Posts: 1
Location: Austin TX
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Wed Jan 16, 2013, 4:03pm
Subject: Re: Aeropress, Moka, or Chemex?
 

uRabbit Said:

I am somewhat of a coffee noob, still. My wife has worked in a small coffee shop and she does most of the prep on our Delonghi BAR32 machine. However, this machine is very inconsistant. The being said, last week was a good solid week of delicious espresso. Now, though, not so much. Not sure why.

Long story short, we are looking into other methods, since we cannot afford a machine that is worthy of getting.

Posted January 15, 2013 link

I get pretty consistent results from my two-year-old BAR32 machine, and we use it every single day. With its pressurized portafilter, the machine seems pretty indifferent to minor variations in grind, coffee bean freshness, and the force of my tamp. Only once or twice I have ground my beans so finely and then tamped so tightly that the machine choked a bit and refused to dispense my double-shot in the 18-25 sec range I prefer.

No idea at all what changed this week? Seems strange you'd consider buying more gear rather than debugging your new problem.
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calblacksmith
Moderator
calblacksmith
Joined: 25 Nov 2007
Posts: 8,042
Location: Riverside, Ca, U.S.A.
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: ECM Vene. A1, La Cimbali M32
Grinder: Azkoyen Capriccio, Major
Vac Pot: 40s era Silex
Drip: Msl. Com. brewers
Roaster: gave it a try, decided no
Posted Wed Jan 16, 2013, 5:40pm
Subject: Re: Aeropress, Moka, or Chemex?
 

You don't need to tamp with a ppf. They are designed to give you something with even canned drip coffee. It won't be any good but you will get something.

 
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Anything I post is personal opinion and is only worth as much as anyone else's personal opinion. YMMV!

Feed the newbs, starve the trolls and above all enjoy what you drink!
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