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How do I make AMAZING coffee with an Aeropress?

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  • How do I make AMAZING coffee with an Aeropress?

    Hey guys, recently I've picked up a new hobby of making coffee. I've got an aeropress, handgrinder and some beans that I got at a well known coffee store. I'm completely knew to this so please bare with me. How do I make the finish from product from step 1? How do I know when to stop grinding? how much hot water do I need? As much detail as possible is greatly appriciated.

    Cheers.

  • #2
    Welcome.
    There are instructions provided with the Aeropress and these are enough to get you started.
    That's the first step: get started; the rest is up to you and experience. You may or may not make amazing coffee the first time but you will get there.

    Next step is to do some reading here on Coffee Snobs and elsewhere on the net (google 'aeropress recipes') But like nearly everyone on this forum, it doesn't how much you are told, the fun is in learning for yourself.

    Some other guidelines.

    1. Get the best beans you can. 'Well known' does not mean best.

    2. The scoop/spoon that comes with the Aeropress holds enough coffee for 1 cup so use that as your measure.

    3. Stop grinding when all the beans you have measured into the grinder are ground.

    4. Don't use boiling water; either bring it to the boil and let it cool for a minute or stop it just before it boils

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    • #3
      Just a perspective from an aeropress owner. I've never once got a good coffee out of it, I've tried different grinds, different coffee, different temp water, different times, different filters, making it upside down, it's just something that doesn't seem to want to work for me for some reason.

      I hope you have better luck

      Comment


      • #4
        I recommend letting the brew sit for a minute after stirring and gently pressing to get a good extraction. There are videos and tips galore on how to use the Aeropress and as a newer snob like me, I think learning about a couple of types of beans early on is good whilst you develop a technique ( and level of coffee geekyness) that works for you. Then y can stick with a blend and work out the finer stuff.

        I've read people think the paper filters prevent some of the oils from making it to the cup which sounds reasonable so a mesh filter is my next upgrade. I enjoy my home roasted beans through the Aeropress at work ( ignoring all the sideways glances I get). I tend to put in a spoon and a half of ground coffee for a mug of coffee. That's works for me but you need to try the suggestions people will make and find something you like

        Enjoy the ride!
        Cheers CH

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by shapeshifter View Post
          Just a perspective from an aeropress owner. I've never once got a good coffee out of it
          Some of the best coffees I've had are from an Aeropress but it is possible it may not produce brews to everyone's tastes. I tend to roast to the first snip of second crack for the Ap, definitely not into rolling SC but others' tastes will vary.

          Paper filters definitely filter out oils and hence flavours. The Able disk and Kaffeologie S filter are worthwhile investments.

          I use an inverted method, pour a little hot water in at first and wait for about 20-30 seconds for the coffee to bloom then top up.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by shapeshifter View Post
            Just a perspective from an aeropress owner. I've never once got a good coffee out of it, I've tried different grinds, different coffee, different temp water, different times, different filters, making it upside down, it's just something that doesn't seem to want to work for me for some reason.

            I hope you have better luck
            I just bought one and wasn't having much luck; I found that changing to a standard-hole-size Able filter disk (metal, that replaces the paper filters) made a significant difference, turning it into an improved french-press type deal.

            Of course, you may just not like brewed coffee.

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            • #7
              I use my AP all the time with standard Able disk to assess each SO origin roast I do. Generally just before 2nd crack or very start of for espresso, generally the day after roasting like a pseudo cupping.

              10g ground coffee (medium filter grind) to 130ml of 94C water, inverted, pour water slowly over about 20secs, this is my bloom. Then a 10sec stir, on with the lid / filter and slowly press - I think this is where a lot of people may come unstuck, using fine grind and really pressing hard = yuck. I barely use any effort at all for a slower more even press, stopping before any hissing.

              Really shows up all the coffee has to offer and gives me a great idea whether or not the flavour profile will be any good for espresso. I may take notes for reference in 5 to 7 days time if something strikes me as not quite right as it can be very much amplified in a shot of espresso.

              Some beans end up tasting so good through the AP, then not that great for espresso. Extra long roasts of low grown beans that may have more emphasis on nuts, savory malty flavoring and / or have picked up dry woody flavours heading toward baked will taste extremely poor in the AP.

              I found the best roasts for AP alone are about 14 to 15 min profile to second crack, but stopping just prior to second crack and higher quality beans take off another 5C or so.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by shapeshifter View Post
                Just a perspective from an aeropress owner. I've never once got a good coffee out of it, I've tried different grinds, different coffee, different temp water, different times, different filters, making it upside down, it's just something that doesn't seem to want to work for me for some reason.
                That's a hell of a shame 'shifter...

                Just for myself, I've found that the most enjoyable brews are with roast batches that are stopped at between 215-218C and certainly not anywhere near the start of 2nd-Crack. I use a heaped measure of beans per dose and usually a double-dose per cup each time. I set the grind so that with me just leaning on the Plunger, it takes about 15 seconds to fully depress. These days, I use an induction cooktop that allows me to heat the water up to 90C and then hold there. When I'm ready to pour the water into the AeroPress, there's no need to wonder what the water temperature actually is - A bit lazy on my part I guess.

                Recently though, I acquired the Fine and Standard metal discs that Andy sells on BeanBay and for me, the Fine one is really doing the goods for me so far. Haven't given the Standard one a really thorough test as yet. Either way, it removes the (sometimes) paper filter taste that can creep into the resulting brew occasionally, so for that alone it's worth doing in my view.

                All the best mate and hope it 'clicks' for you soon...

                Mal.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Amazing is a very subjective word, however personally, I've never found a bad recipe for aeropress. Except maybe the one that came with the box, it is NOT for espresso.

                  Here's the general tips

                  1. Use fresh beans. 4-5 days after roast date is optimum.
                  2. Don't use boiling water, wait 3-4 mins, or get $10 thermometer off eBay.
                  3. Be ready to throw away coffee. Seriously, a cup of coffee is much cheaper than your health, if it taste bad it belongs in the bin.
                  4. Have faith in the recipe and just adjust the grind size. If the cup looked muddy or taste sour, grind larger. If it's watery or bitter, grind smaller.

                  Technically, for immersion brew methods one does NOT need to bloom. I prefer paper because it's easier to clean, pop the puck and rinse everything. No longer true when you go metal, but if you like the oil, by all means. I don't stir and generally avoid recipes that requires it because, other than grind size, stirring is the other wildcard when brewing coffee. Hard to repeat, one day you might stir harder than before.

                  My favorite recipe: the half n half
                  - wet the filter and pre heat everything.
                  - 16g coffee or 1 scoop with a slight bulge, medium coarse ground. a few stops smaller than French press.
                  - 250ml 90° water or almost to the brim (see below)
                  - set the plunger slightly above the circle around the 4 mark. put it upside down.
                  - drop the coffee ground, pour the water in. lock the filter in.
                  - wait 1 minute then flip it over.
                  - wait another minute then press.

                  Enjoy

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by kutis View Post
                    4. Have faith in the recipe and just adjust the grind size. If the cup looked muddy or taste sour, grind larger. If it's watery or bitter, grind smaller.
                    Are you sure?

                    Sour is a flavour profile generally associated with under extraction, grinding larger would make this worse. Would you not want to grind finer?

                    Bitter is a flavour profile generally associated with, among other things, over extraction, grinding smaller would also make this worse. Would you not want to grind coarser to correct this?

                    Sean

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by STS View Post
                      Are you sure?

                      Sour is a flavour profile generally associated with under extraction, grinding larger would make this worse. Would you not want to grind finer?

                      Bitter is a flavour profile generally associated with, among other things, over extraction, grinding smaller would also make this worse. Would you not want to grind coarser to correct this?

                      Sean
                      I may have gotten the coffee taste term wrong. And of course you're right about over and under extraction in relation to grind size.

                      Sour for me is the unpleasant acidity that you get from over extraction, generally that makes your mouth pucker up, think under ripe mangoes.

                      Bitter for me is that disgusting taste close to your throat, and your face will make that unpleasant grin. Most time the coffee is watery. So under extracted.

                      Did I got it the other way around?

                      I'll revise that tip to, if it taste bad, adjust the grind, if it's worse than before, go the other way.

                      I still stand by the recipes comment though. The best part about aeropress is that different recipe will emphasize different taste note, and it's so easy to repeat, you just need to find the grind setting. The only downside is that it can only brew 1 cup at a time.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by kutis View Post

                        I still stand by the recipes comment though. The best part about aeropress is that different recipe will emphasize different taste note, and it's so easy to repeat, you just need to find the grind setting. The only downside is that it can only brew 1 cup at a time.
                        Couldn't agree more. You've got to love the portability too.

                        Sean

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                        • #13
                          The only downside is that it can only brew 1 cup at a time.


                          I disagree. I can make 2-3 cups at a time.
                          The 4-cup marker on the side isn't there for decoration. It depends on your preference and ratio of coffee to water.


                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by flynnaus View Post
                            [/COLOR]

                            I disagree. I can make 2-3 cups at a time.
                            The 4-cup marker on the side isn't there for decoration. It depends on your preference and ratio of coffee to water.
                            The 4-cup marker, unless I have it wrong, refers to a "coffee cup", ie 150ml.

                            It does not refer to cup servings (a single-serve French press will typically be a 3-cup or 4-cup model).

                            While there's no doubt you can get 2-3 enjoyable serves out of it, I think that objectively, they would be quite dilute, as far as coffee goes.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by shapeshifter View Post
                              Just a perspective from an aeropress owner. I've never once got a good coffee out of it, I've tried different grinds, different coffee, different temp water, different times, different filters, making it upside down, it's just something that doesn't seem to want to work for me for some reason.

                              I hope you have better luck
                              As an ex Aeropress owner I agree with your sentiments entirely shapedshifter, I persevered with it for almost 12 months, bought the metal disk, tried brewing right side up, upside down and quite a few points between.

                              The Aeropress simply does not produce a brew that suits my palate, not suggesting they are no good, simply that coffee is not a one size fits all beverage.

                              As an aside, the overused word "amazing"! I cant subscribe to the notion of having an "amazing" cup of coffee a number of times a day, I guess there are those simple soles among us who are constantly "amazed" at every little detail the world offers them, having said that I suspect most of us Snobs would thoroughly enjoy a good coffee a number of times a day, as far as being amazed by the offering, not so much.


                              "amazing

                              Use the adjective amazing to describe something that is so good, it surprises you, like the amazing beauty of the Rocky Mountains or the amazing feats of a truly great athlete.
                              Amazing, like incredible, awesome, and fabulous, is used so often to describe things that are just really good, you sometimes forget that its real meaning is reserved for things that are especially remarkable. The base word in amazing is amaze, which means "to astound or perplex." So amazing should be reserved for things that do just that."

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