Aeropress coffee maker

Review, research and recipes

 

Why the aeropress is as good as they say !

N

It´s small, light, compact, really durable, & we love the mug.

N

It´s very versatile and forgiving with various coffee grinds.

N

You have complete control over the whole brewing process.

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aeropress guy

Brew, learn, enjoy… anywhere.

3 top reasons

Why we bought it

fast, pure & strong

After a moka pot, I think it´s the next best thing to espresso. But it offers even more ! Takes only a few mins to make, and clean-up.

very forgiving

If my grind size varies, I adjust the method.  I can brew at any temperature,  and just adjust the time to fit. Easy !

Sturdy & portable

Think I could sit on it, it ´s so strong ! Goes in the suitcase or hand bag, so I can try out new coffee bean tastes wherever I go. 

See which AeroPress we bought ourselves

What kind of coffee maker is the aeropress ?

It´s the best kind of Immersion & Press coffee maker

You can´t tell by looking at it ! And, at first , it looks like its only for taking out and about,  but you´ll find it used in any good coffee roastery café.  I use mine at home every day. 

The clue is in the name,  with the capital P letter in the middle of the word AeroPress.

So it´s an Immerse and  Press coffee maker. But better than the rest.

¨ The AeroPress brews faster than gravity drip methods, because of air pressure. The short time extracts rich flavor and leaves the bitterness in the grounds.¨ ( quotes by  AeroPress )

Aeropress vs. french press

I used to be a fan of French press, but Aeropress is much faster. The French press coffee filter also makes it taste a little ´bitty´ or ´muddy´ to me,  and we have fallen foul of one exploding too close to children at a dinner table ! There is one advantage the French press has though ( see it in the pros & cons section.)

What kind of coffee does it make ?

In summary, the Aeropress coffee tastes dark & strong because the oils and flavour come through well with the gentle pressing, but also npure and smooth like a pour over coffee maker makes. I´ve used everything from a coarse drip grind to a fine Turkish grind and still get great flavours. You can brew a hot coffee, iced coffee or cold brew. 

Is it an espresso maker or not !

Although some class it as an espresso, technically it is not the classic version of espresso coffee which is produced with a much higher pressure to squeeze out that tell-tale caramel coloured crema.

The AeroPress does not produce a crema, although I think I saw a recipe to do this online, it´s not what it does naturally.

It is pressed by hand so the pressure is not as great as an espresso machine. The minimum pressure a modern espresso maker uses is 9 bar.  The AeroPress is less than 1 bar.

So you could say it´s almost as much as the original steam espressos though (1-.2 bars in pressure) .

If you´re looking for something that is made by hand, totally portable ( albeit larger !) and can actually produce a classic espresso with a crema, then you should be looking at this Flair machine.

rich tasting coffee

Aeropress insist though that it is an espresso and if you go with the original definition of espresso – it was to make a short strong coffee fast (express) and to express it with steam or a piston  or pump. 

So you can see why it can be debated. Id´rather say it isn´t an espresso but the beauty of an aeropress is equivalent to it.

It is so cleverly invented that it gets pretty dam close to the taste !  It makes a nice weighty coffee but can also feel pure like a pour over – almost getting toward the taste of a flat based Kalita wave coffee for me.

Why Barista´s love it too.

You can choose your beans and grind, temperature and timing to go either way. You can change the resulting coffee by altering all the elements.

You have full control Baristas love these new, small and mostly manual new coffee makers as it allows you to take complete control over the brewing process and you can really play with the flavours !

I´ve just been using Turkish coffee in the AeroPress and am amazed at the bright flavours I can get so easily. Have a look at the formula the inventor gave in the FAQs below.

So it´s a lot of fun, and a great education if you´re starting our and want to explore and enjoy your coffee more. 

Which one you should buy today

The aeropress go

aeropress go

When I first saw an Aeropress at my brother´s house about 5 years ago, I thought it looked old fashioned – a bit 70s, with it´s smokey colour –  and all the bits and pieces that came with it made me think it would be a pain in the neck.

However, I started noticing it for sale at coffee shops along with all the trendy new coffee makers and wondered by Baristas were supporting it. So I decided to add it to my taste testing list !

Having tried the great coffee it makes at good roastery cafés, I was beginning to order that as much as a double espresso, and instead of a long black ( or Americano )!

Why… because I liked espresso most for what it was meant to be  – short and dark. But the AeroPress worked either short or long.

Somehow it was able to show the coffee bean flavours off in a different way. It was nothing short of magical for me… so I wished it for my birthday present – and got it. Am I becoming a coffee geek or what !

Click here to see it in Europe, USA, Canada, and Australia.

We´ll take you to your local Amazon store. 

      

product Specifications

Dimensions of complete mug with everything inside and lid on

Height 14cm / 5.3″     Width 10cm /3.9″    Depth 10cm / 3.9″

Material

Polypropylene.  Silicone Seal on the plunger. Phthalates & BPA Free

Color (or Colour !)

Some say black but in reality it´s a dark smokey translucent grey. The mug is thicker and darker, the chamber and plunger are more translucent.

Cleaning

Dishwasher safe, but it´s so easy to just rinse quickly before you drink ! Just unscrew the filter cap and push the puck out, then rinse and you can even let it air dry. When it´s dry just put it all back together. So easy.

Weight

360g (11.5 oz) including 20 filters in the filter holder ( not 350 !). So, because of the mug container, it´s a little heavier than the classic Aeropress ( 8oz )… but still so light !

Brilliant new design.

aeropress go

Everything fits inside the mug !

The rather convenient mug, which I love drinking from, just happens to be the carrying case. It´s a perfect size for a hand blender too so I use it to whisk my matte tea in too ! 

 

Comparing the Aeropress models

What´s in the box ?

WHATS IN THE AEROPRESS BOX

CLASSIC AEROPRESS

Everything fits inside the travel bag
ORIGINAL AEROPRESS SET
Plunger
Chamber
Filter cap
Stirrer
Tall Filter holder ( holds 350 papers )
Scoop
box of 350 filters
Funnel
Travel bag ( optional )

chamber with plunger inside… 14cm x 11cm x 10cm

NEW AEROPRESS GO

Everything fits inside the mug !
ORIGINAL AEROPRESS SET
Plunger
Chamber
Filter cap
Folding stirrer
Flat filter holder ( holds 20 papers )
Scoop
box of 350 filters
Mug ( also acts as carrying case)
Mug lid ( also case lid )

chamber with plunger inside… 12cm x 9cm x 9cm

pros and cons

What we found through research, and using it ourselves 

 

L

I read someone rang over it with his car & it was still fine. Reminds me of our Lightware camera case that is so indestructible that it can be run over by an articulated lorry ! 

L

The mug is also microwave proof ! So you can brew with cold water, then microwave it. I tried it and it wasa delicious.

L

Manufactured in the USA. I know that will be a + point to all of you living there. 

L

Because the chamber and plunger material are a smokey translucent, it´s really easy to see the markings on the chamber from any angle when adding water to it.

L

So easy to just rinse out when you´re done, but it can also be cleaned in the dishwasher.

L

Needs very little maintenance. The old AeroPress seals were made of thermoplastic elastomer (TPE) and lasted about five years if properly cared for (Alan removes the rubber seal every several months and brushes it off under warm water). For two years now the rubber seals are made of silicone. The silicone ones are expected to last even longer !

K

It can leak coffee before you plunge. It shouldn´t leak more than 5% so adjust your grind, or use the inverted recipe method. 

K

Unlike the French press, it just comes in one size. But is that a pro or a con, because you can make enough for 3 Americanos or more. Add the hot water top up after.

K

Don´t press down too hard when plunging. It´s never happened to me but apparently it can compress the coffee into a puck that blocks the water flow. So press gently and wait 30 to 60 seconds for the liquid to flow through. 

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Aeropress Troubleshooting

Frequently asked questions

We love that Alan the inventor answers all questions. We´ve included his answers to questions we wanted to ask too. I hope you also find them useful. Just ask anything in the comments at the end, if it doesn´t.

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Is there a way to test out if my grind size is right ?

You´ll know when there is very little leakage ( expect 5%), and when it takes about 30-40 seconds to gently push the plunger through. 

Each grinder, and barista can be different. So I would grind the minimum you can make or buy first to check how it works out , then adjust and buy more.

}

I think my grind is too fine, can I still use it ?

Everyone seems to think that somewhere between an espresso fine and a medium grind is the best for an Aeropress. Alan the inventor swears by a fine espresso grind though and uses that to make everything. But what if you have an even finer grind ? He even has a method to use a turkish coffee blend. 

Here´s his answer to someone that had an unexpected abundance of Turkish fine powder like coffee grounds. 

¨Try one half scoop and water to #1 ( ie the no. 1 on the chamber). Stir and press verrrry gently. If that works, you might try a full scoop. But you must press very gently. ¨ 
I tried this and am hooked ! Can´t believe it´s so easy to do.

 

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Paper or metal filter - which is best ?

There´s a bit of a debate about which is better. The permanent one of course is more convenient in the very long term, but a majority of people ( including Alan the inventor) seem to say the taste is superior with a paper filter. Some say it´s also best to wet the paper filter before adding the coffee. There´s the school of thought too that the paper filter is better for your health than using a metal one. But hey, it will take a while to get through the 350 paper filters that come with the kit, so you have plenty of time to decide. 

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Is the plastic safe ?

Yes, it´s made of food safe grade plastic and silicone. You can also put it in the dishwasher and microwave.

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Can you make more than one cup at a time ?

 Usually 1 scoop makes 8oz of coffee ( about 237ml) and 3 scoops are used for 15oz.

Alan says to follow the instructions, i.e. use 3-scoop pressings of espresso style coffee prior to the guest’s arrival. Then add hot water to serve American style coffee or add milk for lattes when they arrive.

However that would be all in one pot. Another way is to press the 3 scoop into one cup, and top it up with hot water till it´s 2/3 full, stir, and then divide it out between the 3 cups. Adding the water to 2/3rd full just makes it easier to divide it into 3 !  Then just top up each cup again to make the 3 Americanos.

In another answer he says that three rounded scoops could be used to then fill a 24 oz mug with Americano style coffee, but he admits that´s a lotta lotta coffee , so you may need to use a slightly coarser grind and a little longer steep time. He advises experimenting ! So I will … 

}

How long does the Aeropress typically last ?

A bit like the Bamix blender I love, this thing seems to last forever and apart from some inevitable coffee scratches the only thing that seems to wear out what I call the sucker – aka the rubber seal on the plunger end. So you can buy one of those and easily replace it yourself.

}

What size cup can it sit on ?

Good to know ! I use the AeroPress go and it sits so neatly on it´s on mug, or a tea mug I happen to have. If I feel like drinking from a small espresso or cappucino cup I just decant from the mug to it.
However it´s good to know the dimensions… The Aeropress original can sit on a cup with diameter 3.75¨and the Aeropress Go can sit on a cup 3.25¨diameter.

}

How can I stop the leaking ?

Make sure your coffee isn´t ground too coarsely , or if it´s too late for that then use the inverted method. 

There is another thing to try though. Here´s Alan answer this to a question from a guy that wanted to the initial brew time to be longer than the recommended 10 seconds.  Clever !

¨If you wish to halt the trickle for a while, just insert the rubber seal a half-inch into the top of the chamber and the trickle will stop. This is similar to what we do when we clamp our thumb on the top of a straw to stop dripping out the bottom of the straw. Extending the brew time will result in more bite in your brew.¨

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HOW TO USE THE AEROPRESS

methods & recipes (a.k.a. formulas)

Main AeroPress method

 Step 1

Push plunger out of chamber so you have all the parts sitting separately.

Step 2

Put the filter in filter cap.  I tried 2 paper filters to stop the leakage ( doesn´t really help much ). Some users swear by wetting the paper before adding the coffee. I like doing that as then I know it´s fitted well and won´t budge. 

Step 3

Twist filter cap onto chamber. Now make very sure it is fitted. Everyone makes this mistake, just once or twice and usually never again ! By the way, 3 filters don´t allow you to screw the cap on so don´t go there.  I´m back to using 1 filter and adjust the grind or work with the inverted method ( coming next) to fix any leakage issues. 

Step 4

Stand the chamber on top of the mug ( it fits perfectly) and put one rounded scoop of fine- medium grind coffee in the  chamber. This should be 14g. If you want to be sure, make sure you put your mug onto some coffee scales and zero it, then ad the ground coffee to get 14g. 

Step 5

Shake the chamber to level coffee, seeing as it will fill up quite unevenly.

Step 6

Add water up to Level 1 marker max.  on the chamber. 175°F / 80°C water for hot brewing or room temperature water for cold brew, or if you´re going to microwave it hot after. Remember if you start with room temperature water, you need to stir / steep for a few minutes longer. I also made a neat discovery recently when I discovered that our Nespresso machine pumps 80°C water out of it´s hot water pipe ! So I no longer have to boil a kettle to use this recipe.

Step 7

Stir for about 10 seconds if you´re brewing with hot water, or 1 minute or more if you have added room temperature so that you get a full extraction. I like this method too as you can taste the flavour so well at room temperature, then decide to have either an iced coffee, or a hot one by adding iced or hot water to the initial espresso. You´ll see the coffee grounds ´bloom´ i.e. go white on top as the gases get released. It´s important to allow this to happen before the next step. If you add 2 spoons to begin with, don´t add twice the volume of water, I´ve noticed it doesn´t allow it to bloom properly if you do.

Step 8

Insert the plunger and start to press gently ( see why in the pros and cons section !) . Pause any time you feel an air pressure resistance. When you hear the air whizzing back up with a soft hissing sound, you´re pretty much done and you can stop. Some people think the taste is much better if you stop here, but the inventor doesn´t mind and I agree actually. I can´t taste the difference so you can keep on plunging till it reaches grounds if you like. Makes it easy to pop the coffee puck out when rinsing out.

Step 9

Time enjoy it  now !

As it is, it´s the size of an espresso and even if you want to add water, have a taste ! It´s nice to see the strength of it. I like to taste a little gin too before I add the tonic – just to check the flavour profile !

The inverted method

Step 1

Push plunger out of chamber so you have all the parts sitting separately.

Step 2

Prepare your filter cap with filter and leave aside, ready to use

Step 3

Stand the plunger with chamber attached on top , on your work surface

Step 4

Put one rounded scoop of fine- medium grind coffee in the chamber. So it falls onto the base which is now the plunger seal end !

Step 5

Shake the chamber to level coffee.

Step 6

Add water to soak the coffee ground and stir for 10 secs.

Step 7

Either top up with water to 230g and leave to extract ( time depends on how fine or course your grind is ). Or, just go to next step.

Step 8

Insert the filter cap on top – making sure it is fully twisted on. Have the mug ready.

Step 9

Flip the cylinder of chamber and plunger, on top of the mug and start pressing as usual. 

How to Enjoy your coffee

espresso style

Drink it as it is. Double espresso… add 2 spoons and twice the water before plunging.

Americano

Add hot water to fill up to 8oz. (237 ml).
You´ll find some people add the water to the chamber before they plunge. I think this original way is simpler though.

Latte

Add milk to make an 8 oz. (237 ml) latte.

Cold brew

Add tap, or bottled, or ice water to make an 8 oz. (237 ml) mug..

Barista Recipes for the Aeropress

Recipe 1

Alan the AeroPress inventor

So simple. He says his favourite is…

¨Every morning I press two scoops with water to level 2.

That produces espresso-strength.

Then I add some milk and nuke it for 45 seconds in our microwave

recipe 2

Mistral Coffee shop, Palma, Mallorca

I had a costa rica AeroPress coffee there, as feature in this picture.

Here´s their recipe.

1 rounded AerorPess spoon of coffee ( 14g-16g )
150g water ( 5.3oz)
91/92℃ ( 172.4℉)
Add 50g water to cover coffee first, and wait about 30sec till it blooms ( white top)
After, add the rest of the water – around 200-210g so the total is 250-260g.
At 1 min, start the pressing, so that the whole process is done in about 1 min. 30secs. ( i.e. 1min 10 secs wait time before pressing.)

By the way, the grind they make for AeroPress is ´their´ medium.  So if you get a grind like this, try it and then adjust from there to get the taste you like.

Final Note: as the AeroPress Go is a little smaller than the classic AeroPress, the coffee should be 14g and max. water 230g 

Aeropress cafe grind

recipe 3

from café sol, Las Palmas, Gran canaria

Now, I´ve shown you their grind here because thats what the made me ! They did the grind for the AeroPress method but I got a lot of leaking. Now I know, and it looks too coarse , right ! So I´m thinking they must use the inverted method to make this because otherwise you get a lot of leakage ( well that´s what I do now to solve it !)

Here´s their recipe.

15g coffee ( 1 round AeroPress spoon or 1 tablespoon)
150g water ( 5.3 oz)
78℃ ( 172.4℉ )
Wait 1 min 10 secs wait time before pressing.

So if you get a grind like this, try this and then adjust from there to get the taste you like.

What else do you need ?

accessories

coffee scale and timer
coffee scales with timer included

coffee scales

… for precise coffee and water measuring. These come with a timer built in too !

slow pour kettle for all drink making

... to boil, and pour when it tells you the time is right by showing you a temperature gauge on top too !

digital thermometer

… for precise water temperature, and checking all other cooking temperature needs too ( roast meats etc)  

Espresso cups

…a proper double walled thermal coffee cup that holds the heat well too. for  when you want to serve more than one.   

6 great luxury gifts for the AeroPress coffee lover

 

Aeropress filter alternatives

2 Alternative filters - re-usable stainless STEEL or thicker PAPER !

… instead of filter papers what will these do for you. You´d think a permanent metal filter would only be about convenience but no ! It alters the taste too. With the stainless steel disk you get more of the oils going through to the coffee and most users say it gives a bigger, bolder taste more like a mokapot  or espress.  This fine mesh from Able is the most popular among the experts, anything less fine tends to give a little grit in the cup. There´s even a superfine IMS one we´ve heard of and want to try but this is the most popular. The only drawback that AeroPres themselves point out is that the paper filter stops any of the bad stuff in coffee that raises your bad cholestoral , whereas metal filters don´t. That´s probably also what gives it the bolder taste ( must tell Paul as he has so many espressos a day ! )

If you ´d like to experiment with different papers, or want to give it as a gift, I´d try these AESIR ones next. Think Chemex filters that are nice and thick  ( so you never have to use 2 together which al lot of AeroPress users have to do anyway ) . They also have a finer pore, and the paper is a premium Finnish pulp so the taste will be much brighter too. Champion baristas love it !

best hand coffee grinders

Ceramic burr hand grinder / coffee mill

The newer 1Zpresso ( JX series) is incredible for a little mini coffee mill but the price reflects that. If it was me, I´d get this good reliable Hario as a little travel grinder that would be great with the AeroPress – and at a much more sensible price too. A good third choice is also the Porlex mini. These were usually made to even fit inside the AeroPress for compact travelling, but that was the classix AeroPress, so be careful with the measurements or go for the original AeroPress if this is important to you ( you´ll miss out on the mug tho;). If you want something bigger go for the Hario Skerton Pro. 

milk frothers

… for those lovely lattes and cappucinos. A battery operated (cordless) frother is great, but we swear by this automatic Aeroccino milk frother. It´s not the latest model but it does everything we need… and it survived a lifetime in Morocco at the hotel and is still going strong. That´s really saying something !

if you like the aeropress … 

Then you might also like these too. 

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