How To Guide: AeroPress
The AeroPress is one of the simplest coffee-making apparatuses to use on the market. Its design makes it very versatile and portable, allowing you to produce quality filter style coffee wherever you are i.e. at home or out camping.
There are always certain variables that effect the brewing process and it’s important to understand these before you can begin to experiment. For example, coffee, dosage, grind size, brew ratios, water, level of agitation etc.
In this video and stepped out below, we will provide you with a detailed tutorial on how to brew an AeroPress.
What makes this brewing method interesting is that that it has its own dedicated World AeroPress Championships. Here competitors take a somewhat simple device and apply their own personal spin in an attempt to create the perfect brew. Anything from the use of two to three grind sizes at once, different coffee weights, bypassing & using different water temperatures are some of the variables which effect the end cup.
In essence, what the AeroPress does is give you complete creative freedom to develop your own recipe to highlight the varying flavour compounds of your coffee.
What You'll Need
- Filter cap
- Filters (paper or metal)
- Grinder (Hand grinder, home grinder or commercial i.e. Mazzer)
- Kettle (preferably one that controls temperature)
- Carafe or Cup (to plunge into)
1. Heat Water
Bring the kettle up to 95 degrees celsius
We have chosen 95 degrees as our temperature because our brew time is relatively short and the hotter temp will help break into the internal structure of the coffee to extract all the compounds that we need for good flavour balance. Water is a necessity when brewing coffee; think of it as a solvent, we need it to draw out and extract flavour compounds from the coffee.
The hotter the water is, the more compounds will be dissolved. Increasing the water temperature increases the temperature of the compounds themselves, which in turn increases their solubility. Water cannot exceed 100 degrees, so this places a limit on the compounds, which can be dissolved into the brew. Water at lower temperatures won’t be able to dissolve all the flavours we usually get with water at higher temperatures.
The goal is to dissolve the sweet, heavier organic compounds which hot water readily dissolves. Keep in mind that the quality and desirability of these compounds changes across different coffees & roast styles.
Grind your coffee to a coarse grind size.
Refer to the grind particle size at 1:55 in the video for visual reference.
For those using Mazzer grinders, this grind size would be approximately 15 notches coarser than an espresso extraction of 30ml in 25-30 seconds.
The main reason why we picked a coarser grind is because of complex internal structure of the coffee, which makes it difficult for the water to travel through, water needs to get into the grinds to extract flavour. This is why we can extend the brew time for longer periods (as opposed to espresso for example) when using this style of brewing.
So if we had finer grind we will always have a higher extraction time as when water touches them, almost everything they have to offer extracts immediately. In that case, we would then have to decrease our brew time to ensure that we don’t extract too many bad compounds/flavour.
3. Heat Apparatuses
Pour a small amount of hot water into your AeroPress and Carafe
This ensures that minimal temperature is lost throughout the brewing process.
4. Taring Scales
Place your AeroPress on the scales and tare so the scales read Zero.
Ensure you have already discarded the water used to heat your apparatuses. This step allows us to accurately measure the amount of coffee used in the next step.
5. Add Coffee
Add 13-15g of dry coffee into the AeroPress.
This should be approximately 1 x AeroPress scoop. Tap the side of the AeroPress to level the coffee out.
Once the coffee is in and sitting level, tare off the scales to ensure they say zero. This will allow us to accurately measure the amount of water used for brewing.
Add approximately 30g/30ml of water to saturate the coffee and start the extraction process. Then take the stirrer and stir coffee for 10-20secs, this process is called the bloom.
The bloom time can range from anything from 30-45secs. This bloom process is just to ensure that all coffee is saturated with water and that we are starting to extract all of our flavour compounds.
Add 200-230g / 200-230ml of water into the AeroPress and place the lid and filter paper on top to maintain temperature.
We recommend to use the paper filters over metal filters to provide greater clarity in the final cup.
8. Prepare for Brew
Take the AeroPress off the scales and press to release all the air from the apparatus.
Ensure that you only press down enough so all air has escaped and all liquid remains in the apparatus.
Allow the coffee to brew for approximately 1:30-1:45.
10. Prepare for Extraction
Place your carafe upside down and on top of the AeroPress.
Safely flip so the cup is sitting on the bench.
Your Aeropress is now ready for extraction.
Carefully press down on the Aeropress, extracting the coffee into your carafe
You should aim to complete the extraction in between 20-30 seconds (bringing your total brew time to approximately 2:15). Continue extract until you hear and see that all the liquid has been extracted.
Take off the lid, and press the used coffee into a compost bin.
Take both parts apart and rinse under warm water.