The huge popularity of coffee is a great incentive for entrepreneurs. Despite its relative simplicity compared to high-tech TVs or smartphones, devices for making coffee and coffee drinks continue to advance rapidly. Portable espresso coffee machines are the result of creative companies search. The AeroPress pioneered this technology. As known, it was designed by the American inventor Alan Adler in 2005 and today is produced by AeroPress Inc. 7 years later, Wacaco introduced the Minipresso, which can be classified as the next generation of portable espresso machines. Since then, this segment is expanded rapidly.
In fact, the AeroPress only includes a hollow plastic cylinder, a piston inside it, and a filter holder. Of course, the company is constantly improving their products. In particular, since 2010, AeroPress has been using only BPA free materials.
The operation principle is very simple and includes several steps. In the first step, the ground coffee is poured into the cylinder using a measuring spoon. Then, hot water is poured from above. Extraction takes several minutes. Finally, a piston forces the finished beverage through a paper filter into a cup.
AeroPress brewing technology
In terms of coffee brewing technology, AeroPress can be positioned as an intermediate method between drip and Bialetti (Moka) coffee makers. For your reference, Bialetti (Moka) is listed on Guinness World Records as the world’s most famous coffee maker.
These coffee makers provide extraction of flavoring and aromatic components of coffee through percolation (filtering), but they differ in design. The Bialetti (Moka) or geyser coffee maker pushes hot water through the ground coffee using steam as a piston for the water. In drip models, steam rises upward and condenses. The condensate temperature reaches 87-98° C. Then, it slowly seeps through the ground coffee filter, allowing extraction.
The AeroPress provides a very wide flavor range by adjusting the water pushing duration (depends on the pressure on the piston), the grinding degree, and the pre-wetting duration.
AeroPress is inferior to drip models due to suspension in the drink, but using two filters practically eliminates this problem. On the other hand, the AeroPress delivers a richer flavor.
The main recipe provides for:
– 200-220 ml of hot water with a temperature of 88-92º С;
– 12-20 grams of ground coffee (grinding degree depends on the filter);
– 1-2 minutes – the extraction duration.
The most popular proportion is about 4-17 grams of ground coffee per 200 ml of water. By the way, the measuring spoon included in the package contains approximately 15 grams. But, of course, AeroPress technology does not limit experimentation with proportions, which always depend on individual tastes.
Direct and inverted coffee brewing methods
– 12-17 grams of fine ground coffee;
– 300 ml of hot water with a temperature of about 90º С;
– one or two paper filters are installed in the holder. Experts recommend pre-rinsing the filters in the holder with hot water to remove paper dust;
– a flask without a piston and with a filter directed downward is installed on a coffee cup;
– ground coffee is poured with a measuring spoon into the flask;
– 200-220 ml of hot water is poured from the top and mixed for 10 seconds to a minute (duration does not significantly affect the coffee taste);
– the extraction duration lasts from 1 to 1,5 minutes;
– the drink is pushed into the cup using the piston. The optimal punching time is in the range of 20-40 seconds. It significantly affects the consistency and quality of the drink. In particular, pressing too quickly reduces the coffee strength and its saturation;
– the hissing sound of air indicates the process end.
The disadvantage of this method is the partial leakage of water through the ground coffee without extraction. The inverted method eliminates it. With this method, the first three steps are absolutely identical to the direct method. But then differences begin, which include:
– the piston rises inside the cylinder without completely removing;
– AeroPress is turned by the piston down;
– ground coffee is poured into the AeroPress with a measuring spoon from the side where the flask is attached to the cup;
– 200-220 ml of hot water is poured from above and mixed;
– the cup is attached to the AeroPress;
– after extraction, the AeroPress is turned over and the drink is forced through the piston.
In fact, the Espresso bypass recipe is a dilution of the finished coffee with water. Simplified, this method turns Espresso into Americano. It is handy for balancing the too rich but underextracted a coffee without increasing the brewing time. This method provides all pros of filtering, including the brighter and sweeter flavor components of the finished coffee. Physically, it prevents the extraction of bitter constituents (caffeine and tannins) during the last stage of the brew.
AeroPress bypass includes:
– 20-22 grams (for coarser grinding – max up to 30 grams) fine ground coffee;
– 200 ml of hot water with a temperature of about 90º С;
– one or two paper filters are installed in the holder after the recommended rinsing under hot water to remove paper dust;
– similarly to the inverted method, the piston moves up the flask, but without complete removal, the AeroPress is turned over, coffee is poured into flask with a measuring spoon, then 100 ml of hot water, all mixed for 10 seconds or more (according to individual taste) and extracted for 40-60 seconds;
– the recipe provides for a faster pushing the piston (15-25 seconds);
– finished coffee is diluted with 100 ml of hot water.
Of course, all methods leave a lot of room for experimentation with the volume of ingredients, the extraction duration and the force on piston (time for pushing water through the powder). Moreover, some pre-activate the extraction process by adding only up to 50 ml of hot water. The rest of the water is added after 20-40 seconds. In addition, mixing can be carried out after extraction before pouring into the cup.
– price up to $ 30;
– the grinding degree, the pre-wetting duration and simple adjustment of the pressing-through duration provide making coffee with wide taste gamut;
– simple and quick making coffee and care;
– fairly high quality of finished coffee;
– durable, compact and portable, especially the AeroPress Go version.
– in terms of acidity, the taste is less bright compared to drip coffee makers;
– suspension in the drink;
– regular purchase of paper filters.
In 2019, the company introduced the more compact Aeropress Go with a 450 ml mug included.
Additionally, it functions as a case for a coffee maker.
The list of differences includes:
– together with a mug, Aeropress Go weighs only 328 grams vs 375 grams of the Aeropress version;
– max capacity Go only 200 ml vs 260 ml of the Aeropress model;
– Go is supplied without a funnel, its measuring spoon and spatula have new design;
– the perforation of the holes in the filter holder has a different pattern.
The range of portable espresso coffee machines continues to expand rapidly for almost a decade. Today the market offers great Wacaco Minipresso, Nanopresso, Pipamoka models, very popular Staresso Portable Mini and Pro Mirage coffee makers, etc. But despite fierce competition, Aeropress continues to compete successfully in this segment due to its high quality and low price.
This video shows the making coffee with Aeropress Go vs Aeropress.