Is the Aeropress one of the best inventions ever made? It could well be. This clever plastic gizmo – two tubes and a filter, basically – revolutionised the world of coffee back when it was invented in the US in 2005.
Alan Adler is the fella responsible and we’re thankful for his service. The gizmo he invented has taken the world by storm since then, and rightly so. It’s simple to operate and makes a stellar brew in just a few minutes (as long as you fill it with the right type of coffee). The cup it produces is like a strong, smooth filter coffee – perfect for fans of both espresso and filter brews.
And it’s light, easy to clean, and lasts forever if you treat it right. Are you convinced yet?
Here’s how it works. The ground coffee goes in the open-top vertical tube. At the bottom of this tube lies a plastic cap with holes in, covered by a paper filter (which you change each time you use the Aeropress,). This arrangement is then put over the cup, held in place by its flared base.
Hot water then goes in the top of the tube, which should fill up and very slowly drip out the bottom into the cup. You leave this for 30 seconds or so, stirring throughout. Then, the plastic plunger (or polypropylene, to be precise) is inserted to force the water through the coffee and filter. The result – one of the smoothest, fastest brews you’ll ever have.
The paper filters behave differently with different grind sizes. So, a medium grind is going to be your best bet for an Aeropress. If you were to use a fine one (such as espresso blend) you might find it not working so well with the paper filters – the grind might get a bit mushy with bits passing through when they shouldn’t. Using a coarser one will cause you trouble too – you might find the flavours aren’t brought out very efficiently due to lower surface area of the grinds. This will lead to a weaker, less flavoursome cup – not how you want to enjoy your excellent coffee.
We always aim for perfection in every cup, so we have to recommend you grind your coffee fresh, just before you’re ready to make a brew. This will ensure the delicious aromas and flavours of the beans will be the freshest they can possibly be.
If you’re using a burr grinder (the preferable option for any coffee connoisseur), you should be able to adjust the settings to a medium grind. Hopefully you will have experimented with your grinder a bit first to figure out what setting makes for ‘medium’ – it’s a bit of an art sometimes, but you’ll get used to it soon enough.
If you’re using a blade grinder, make sure to stay mindful of the time you grind for. If you do it for too long, there’s a chance the grind ends up too fine, and you’ll end up with a gritty cup.
So, medium grind it is – but at Neighbourhood we like to go a bit further in the search of perfection, so we have our very own bespoke Aeropress grind for each coffee variety we make. We grind to order, so if you’re sensible enough to have an Aeropress at home, head to our online shop, choose your bean, and select ‘Aeropress’ under the grind menu. Simple!
And if you haven’t got an Aeropress, you can remedy that right here!