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jmush
Senior Member


Joined: 10 Mar 2013
Posts: 1
Location: United States
Expertise: I like coffee

Posted Sun Mar 10, 2013, 2:18pm
Subject: Re: Aerobie Aeropress
 

I apologize if others have asked this, but I've had trouble googling the answer.

I use the Aeropress with the traditional method.  I'm concerned that too much water is dripping through the filter too quickly.  For example, if I am making a double-shot, if I pour in water to the 2-marker, after I stir for 10-12 seconds, the water level is already down to 1-marker.  Is that much water supposed to go through before I even get to using the plunger?  I understand this phenomenon is what led to the inverted method so that you can decide when to let the water drip through, but I'm only really interested in how the original method is supposed to work.  

My grind is a 5 on the Baratza Encore.
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paulbel
Senior Member
paulbel
Joined: 26 Apr 2008
Posts: 152
Location: Vancouver, BC, Canada
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: aeropress
Grinder: conical burr (cuisinart)
Drip: sometimes
Posted Sun Mar 10, 2013, 4:54pm
Subject: Re: Aerobie Aeropress
 

I don't know what 5 on the Baratza looks like, but I've never had too much drip through using fine grinds with the standard paper filter that Aerobie provides.  I generally only have a very slight drip through with a two-scoop double shot.  If you can grind finer, perhaps that's the next step to try.

But these days I'm using (very happily) the Kaffeologie S-filter metal mesh, and for that I have gotten used to using the inverted method. So my memory of using the paper filter might be hazy.
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rasqual
Senior Member
rasqual
Joined: 29 Jun 2005
Posts: 1,069
Location: Chicago area
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: *$ Barista, non-pressurized
Grinder: SMP
Vac Pot: Yama, Aeropress
Drip: Porcelain Melitta 103, Hario
Roaster: "ring roaster", mod popper
Posted Sun Mar 10, 2013, 8:12pm
Subject: Re: Aerobie Aeropress
 

jmush Said:

I use the Aeropress with the traditional method.  I'm concerned that too much water is dripping through the filter too quickly.  For example, if I am making a double-shot, if I pour in water to the 2-marker, after I stir for 10-12 seconds, the water level is already down to 1-marker.  Is that much water supposed to go through before I even get to using the plunger?  I understand this phenomenon is what led to the inverted method so that you can decide when to let the water drip through, but I'm only really interested in how the original method is supposed to work.  

Posted March 10, 2013 link

The original method should not be expected to work ideally the way Aerobie indicated in its instructions. They're idiosyncratic in their counsel to use far less water than ideal for the device. Bear in mind that Alan created a device that to his satisfaction mimicked espresso. It should not be necessary to allude to settled arguments that the Aeropress does not produce espresso, but having done so please refer to the prior sentence on its own merits. It's what Alan sought. And in order to create what I'll call strong coffee, he used less water than one would normally use to brew a typical cup of normal strength coffee. He saw this as a feature -- not a bug.

I see it as a bug, not a feature. Even for brewing over ice in the summer, the low volume of water Aerobie recommends per volume of grind is far less than necessary or ideal, IF someone is after a conventional cup of coffee. If you're wanting something concentrated to pour over ice cream -- sure, follow the instructions and hew to the little markets on the device.

The inverted method as used to deal with this entirely needless worry about flow-through during brewing is perverse. It's not solving a problem -- it's perpetuating one by lending credence to the use of such little water in the first place. Then, because too little water is used in the brewing, a "fix" is deemed necessary -- so people wring their hands and try all kinds of things. Inversion for that purpose is perverse, because you lose a full inch of extraction space in the tube for bloom with a sufficient amount of water. But that doesn't matter because folks "solving the problem" are using so little water anyway. Argh.

Inversion for purposes of getting coffee oils into the cup is great. Use paper, polyester, cloth, or anything else -- great idea. Inversion for solving flow-through issues is just buying into a brewing model for the Aeropress that never should have been set forth -- but there it is in the instructions, and of course people are going to defer to the manufacturer, who is presumed to best know the device.

And indeed, I believe Alan and Alex do know the device better than most of its owners. But what they haven't understood so well is the value of their contraption for brewing coffee with more conventional ratios of grind to water. You can't quite get to "conventional" with the small Aero, but the wonder of the device is that you don't need to. You just need to use far more water than the instructions recommend.

Try it. Start with double the water. You might find it's worth your while tripling the water. It depends entirely on your grind. It also depends on your technique. For a given grind, it's important that you can terminate the extraction with the press quickly, at will. If you use too much water and too fine a grind, that might not be a simple matter. But if you use that fine a grind, you're not likely to be incurring severe flow-through problems anyway. I'll infer your grind is little finer than drip. In that case, definitely use more water -- treble it. Or double it and go a  bit finer on the grind (but test with only one variable change at a time).

Bear in mind that with a finer grind (especially), the Aeropress extracts a LOT during the press -- not the stir and steep. Anyone not believing this should try this: after placing relatively fine grind in the Aero, drop a screen over the grind such that added water will not disturb the loose coffee in the bottom of the device. Press immediately. A puck will form that resists the press. Apply moderate pressure (Aerobie is right to counsel not doubling down on pressure), the press should complete within 20 seconds.

If your grind and technique are optimal, the result will be a perfect 20% extraction of arbitrary concentration (add water to constitute whatever you like). No stirring, no steep time.

Of course, if you use too little water, you'll have all kinds of reasons to complain about flow-through, waste of coffee, and so forth.

The Aero is an amazing device -- one that reality HAD to produce one day -- when its instructions are ignored and one's own knowledge of and experience with the brewing variables are consulted. It's not a Cessna. It's a hotrod sport plane. It's sensitive to how you vary variables and technique. Careless use will produce dreck, just as a careless flip of the wrist in a sport plane will be unpleasantly consequential -- the plane and the Aero are comparably responsive and sensitive.

My best guitar has pickups that I describe as merciless -- they reward good technique with good sound and punish bad technique by exposing my gaffes -- as if some priest shouted to the world what I might say in confession. The Aero is similar. The device both demands and rewards knowledge of brewing variables.

It's in desperate need of an edit and much superb commentary at CG has been set forth since the early days when I spent a lot of time on this, but I'll link to my original document on inversion, because it treats some of what I've said in further detail. I haven't been active in CG for some time, but on those occasions when I've dropped in (to check up on mischief certain to be afoot) I've been amazed at the expertise among the more active participants in recent years.

https://sites.google.com/site/scottmarqu ardt/invertedaeropressingforbettercoffee

Do NOT just post once here. Be active. You won't regret it. No way.  :-)
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andys
Senior Member
andys
Joined: 10 May 2003
Posts: 845
Location: NY
Expertise: Just starting

Espresso: Speedster, Londinium 1
Grinder: EK-43,Robur, HG One, M3
Vac Pot: Yama
Drip: various
Roaster: PIDed Popper
Posted Mon Mar 11, 2013, 5:28am
Subject: Re: Aerobie Aeropress
 

Hi Scott, good to hear from you!

 
-AndyS
picture page:  http://flickr.com/photos/andy_s/sets/
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CaptainCowPie
Senior Member
CaptainCowPie
Joined: 12 Dec 2005
Posts: 71
Location: Charlottesville, VA
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Mypressi Twist
Grinder: Super Jolly
Vac Pot: Not Yet
Drip: Aeropress & Bonavita...
Roaster: Heat Gun / Bread Machine
Posted Mon Mar 11, 2013, 7:46am
Subject: Re: Aerobie Aeropress
 

paulbel Said:

But these days I'm using (very happily) the Kaffeologie S-filter metal mesh, and for that I have gotten used to using the inverted method. So my memory of using the paper filter might be hazy.

Posted March 10, 2013 link

I have also been using the Kaffeologie S-filter, but I find that it is difficult to use inverted. Even with a fine grind, I have a hard time controlling the water coming out of the top. Usually it comes out much too quickly. So I use the DISK for inversion. I haven't really used the paper filters for quite some time.

Vince
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Netphilosopher
Senior Member


Joined: 14 Jan 2011
Posts: 1,602
Location: USA
Expertise: Just starting

Posted Mon Mar 11, 2013, 9:31am
Subject: ...
 

...
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paulbel
Senior Member
paulbel
Joined: 26 Apr 2008
Posts: 152
Location: Vancouver, BC, Canada
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: aeropress
Grinder: conical burr (cuisinart)
Drip: sometimes
Posted Mon Mar 11, 2013, 10:42am
Subject: Re: Aerobie Aeropress
 

When I was primarily making aeropress-version caffe lattes, I used the "correct" amount of water, and made up the rest of the cup in steamed milk. But now that I'm low carbing it, I used double or more water, and generally add a little more once it's in the cup.
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slickfast
Senior Member


Joined: 18 Mar 2013
Posts: 19
Location: Guilford
Expertise: I love coffee

Posted Mon Mar 18, 2013, 6:21pm
Subject: Re: Aerobie Aeropress
 

I'm on my second Aeropress after having my trusty first one stolen by someone at work (isn't that insane?!). Anyway, I've been Googling around for good ways to transport these brilliant little gadgets with their multiple pieces. Am I the only one that finds this a pain in the neck? What do you do about it?
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Owl
Senior Member


Joined: 30 May 2011
Posts: 37
Location: US

Posted Mon Mar 18, 2013, 8:03pm
Subject: Re: Aerobie Aeropress
 

slickfast Said:

I'm on my second Aeropress after having my trusty first one stolen by someone at work (isn't that insane?!). Anyway, I've been Googling around for good ways to transport these brilliant little gadgets with their multiple pieces. Am I the only one that finds this a pain in the neck? What do you do about it?

Posted March 18, 2013 link

slick, welcome to the club. Mine was stolen in 2008. At work. Insert appropriate expression of disgust here.
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paulbel
Senior Member
paulbel
Joined: 26 Apr 2008
Posts: 152
Location: Vancouver, BC, Canada
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: aeropress
Grinder: conical burr (cuisinart)
Drip: sometimes
Posted Mon Mar 18, 2013, 9:09pm
Subject: Re: Aerobie Aeropress
 

Maybe this suggests an advertising angle for Alan: "so cool your co-workers will steal it"
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