I love the Aeropress. It's such a simple device but it allows so much control and creativity over your brew, and additionally it's super easy to learn to use. It has the added benefit of being virtually indestructible, easy to clean, and easy to travel with, so you have no excuses to not have good coffee if you're on the road.
For this blog entry, the steps/important items will be bold headings, while details will be in normal text.
Ground coffee. Hot water. An Aeropress, and the accompanying cap and filter.
I dont serve pour overs in South End Grind but I've prepared many at home and in tasting coffees and for menu preparation for SEG and I got the best taste out of my Aeropress brews when I go a bit finer than I would for a v60.
Right now I have been using the Pure Intentions Top Lot Coffees as my Aeropress offerings. This will change as different coffees come into and out of season, and what types of roast and flavor profiles Pure Intentions delivers when they work their magic. The Top Lot Ethiopia is super bright and fruity up front, with a juicy finish. Perfect for sipping over the course of a half hour. The Kenyan is more delicate and almost tea-like, with different floral notes revealing themselves as the coffee cools.
Arrange the Aeropress so the plunger is inserted only about 1 cm into the brewer, and flip it up so its resting on the plunger end. This can be a bit of a precarious situation, so make sure your counter is clear and you don't knock it over.
With the Aeropress on a tared scale, pour aggressively as to wet as much of the coffee as possible all at once. One of my favorite aspects of the Aeropress is that it allows you to control exactly how much time the water and coffee have in contact with each other. Pour almost to the very top, allowing only enough headspace to allow you to quickly stir the coffee as to ensure it is all fully saturated with water. This means that about 255-265 grams of water are in the brew chamber with the ground coffee.
I let the coffee steep for 1 minute before pressing. During this time you can perform steps 3 and 4.
The only limiting factor of the aeropress is its size. With the volume of the brew chamber being what it is you are limited to about 8 oz at a time. So for this recipe, we are essentially preparing a concentrated brew, and adding water after the fact to bring the brew to the proper volume and ratio. The ratio that i've found that works best for immersion type brewers (French Press, Aeropress, etc.) is about 1:15 ground coffee to hot water. Because the Aeropress will only hold the 21g coffee plus 255 grams of coffee, 60 grams of water as bypass brings the brew to 315 total grams of water, right on that 1:15 ratio. I borrowed the concept of using a concentrated Aeropress+bypass from Filip Kucharczyk’s 2016 World AeroPress Championship Recipe. You can read more about it here!
This is another step that can get a bit messy if you're not careful. They way I have had the most success is to use the funnel that comes with the Aeropress. I place the upside down funnel on top of the Aeropress, and with one hand on the funnel and one hand on the plunger handle, carefully turn the brewer over so the funnel leads into your mug/pitcher with the bypass water already in it. Make sure when you go to press the plunger that your not pressing on top of your scale. Go ahead and press pretty aggressively, the funnel should make sure that you don't lose coffee out the side. If you find that your coffee is extremely difficult to press, its an indication that your grind is probably too fine.
From start to finish this whole process should take no more than 2 minutes. The great thing about this style of brewing is that it's very easy to change the different variables, experiment with how that affects the taste of your brew, and find something you like! Come in sometime and we can chat about how you can brew some delicious coffee of your own.