Oh good. I get a little tired sometimes of the aeropress process, but damn if I don’t end up with crazy good coffee.
My current coffee setup: Hario Skerton mill, and from Technivorm to AeroPress.
Actually I’m still a bit undecided between the last two. The AeroPress does make excellent coffee even though I can’t be bothered with all the surrounding geekery like water temperature, or grinding fresh from freshly roasted beans mouth-delivered by trained llamas directly from the producers. However, the AeroPress brew does seem a bit weak compared to the very thorough and lengthy Technivorm drip procedure, and dare I say I even miss the bitterness a bit?
The Hario Skerton ceramic burr grinder is a definite recommendation, though. Wonderful little device. I just love well-made mechanics, and it’s extremely functional to boot.
If you find the aeropress weak, try letting it steep a bit longer before pressing, or increasing the water temperature a bit. It’s not geekery really, it’s just nuking the water for 105 seconds instead of 90 seconds or whatever.
Getting a metal S-filter can help as well. The paper filter leeches some of the taste.
Water temperature isn’t geekery - it’s basic coffee brewing, like grinding beans just before brewing. On the coffee dork scale, owning an Aeropress is at least an 8, using water that’s near-boiling is a 4 or 5 at most.
I guess I’ll never accomplish “basic coffee brewing” then. Getting an Aeropress just means ordering one at Amazon, and operating it is no harder than oeprating a drip machine. But controlling the water temperature would require me to pay attention every time I brew coffee. That’s, like, way too geeky for me. Similarly, I don’t grind beans just before brewing. I grind them in batches for a couple of days, during the days, not in the morning when I need coffee and don’t want to bother grinding beans.
A kettle makes adjusting the water temperature pretty easy. Being in no mood for precision operations when making coffee, I just lift the kettle off the heat and wait a couple seconds for the water to come off the boil.
The thing I don’t quite get about the aeropress and the french press is there’s no pause between wetting the grounds and drenching them. Aren’t the grounds supposed to have a few moments to out-gas (“bloom”) before the proper brewing begins?
An electric kettle with built-in thermostat will take care of the temperature with no additional effort on your part.
Grinding each time does take a couple of minutes, but IMO you may be wasting good beans if you are letting them sit for days after grinding.
If you’re grinding coffee in batches and brewing the results days later, yeah, you’re not even getting the basics right.
I use a temperature-controlled electric kettle, which makes getting the temperature correct a matter of turning it on. However, you don’t need one to get close enough. Just boil water. Boiling water is not hard.
Try the Aeropress with a metal filter, not the paper. That will give you back some strength and bitterness.
Your definition of “basics” is broken. I’ve never tasted any difference between coffee ground one or ten days before. Conceivably grinding fresh would open up a magical new realm of taste, but I doubt I’ll ever bother finding out…
A temperature-controlled kettle sounds like a good idea for when my current one breaks, though. And I see Amazon has a bunch of metal filters specifically for the Aeropress, so I’ll have to try that too.
Don’t mind Gus. While what he says is factually true, he tends to break things down into numbers that miss the forest for the trees.
What really matters, is what ends up in your cup, and is most satisfying to you.
If you are happy grinding ahead of time, please continue. There is typically a huge, noticeable difference between going fresh and not but if you can’t tell the difference it becomes irrelevant.
How do you guys buy and store your coffee?
My bean of choice recently has been Peet’s Major Dickason’s Blend. The grocery store was selling 12-oz whole bean bags for $6.99, couldn’t pass it up, and it’s pretty delicious.
When I open the bag I’m tempted to just fold the top back over and re-seal it using the foldy thingies on the bag itself, but would it help if I instead sealed it in a screw-top glass mason jar or something?
For storing beans before grinding? I use an OXO POP storage unit (1.5 qt) for my stuff at home. We recently just got a Friis, which is air-tight but also vents CO2 out, without allowing O2 back in (in theory).
Really, what you want is to reduce airflow over the beans. Folding over the bag would do that, to some extent, as long as you push out all the air and have a decent seal. You’d also have the benefit of the one way valve as well (over a mason jar or other container like the OXO). The Friis is nice, but honestly I don’t leave stuff in there long enough to really see if it is preserving stuff longer than my OXO container.
Uh, no. This isn’t my definition, it’s the definition of anyone who doesn’t drink dishwater.
Of course not. It’s like saying “I’ve never tasted a difference between donuts that were left out for one month a donuts that were left out for ten.” The damage is long since done if you’re leaving it 24 hours.
“He’s right, but I’m going to say he’s wrong anyway.” Nice slam without any actual argument to back it up, and one that’s particularly inappropriate since this isn’t a discussion of numbers or fine details, it’s rock-bottom basic brewing. You’re just peeved because of our prior history discussing stale coffee.
I buy my coffee from Go Coffee Go. It’s a storefront for a variety of small roasters. Prices are generally about $12 for a 12 pound bag, and shipping’s generally cheap: $5 for 1-2 bags, $7 for 3-4, free for 5+. I usually get 2, which is probably more than I should, since I don’t use it fast enough. They often run specials where you can get free shipping on 3 or maybe 2 bags from specific roasters. The beans always show up within 3 days of roasting, and now and then sooner.
There’s a difference between any coffee bag that sits on a grocery store shelf and one that’s fresh-roasted, sort of like the difference between donuts made today and Dolly Madison donuts that have been on the shelf for a month. The latter don’t taste bad, but they don’t taste the same as fresh.
That said, not everyone cares. My wife doesn’t care about the difference between my fresh coffee and the Starbuck’s French Roast I buy in 2.5 lb bags from BJ’s. Mostly she’s just tasting the burned roast, rather than the bean itself, and that’s all she wants from coffee.
I’ve gone through a couple of storage approaches. I was using Ziploc Vacuum bags for a while, but stopped because a mouse was chewing through the bags. These days I’m using Airscape coffee canisters - they have a lid you push down to force the air out. I’m not sure how much either one helps.
It’s mostly about keeping light and air away from the coffee, with the caveat that the beans produce CO2 over time, which can possibly produce pressure in a sealed container. The bags probably do that as well as the more elaborate approaches as long as you push the air out, as nKoan says. Don’t freeze them - I know lots of people do, but it’s not good for the coffee, any more than freezing a tomato is a good idea.
Nuking for 105 seconds instead of 90 is too much attention for you? I mean, you’re nuking the coffee anyway. Just like, hit different numbers.
That seems fine if you don’t care if you are fine with stale coffee. If you want to drink actual coffee then you should roast your own beans at home.
Additionally, you want to make sure your beans are stored in a cool place, protected from light. I use an old coffee can (from trader joes) that keeps the light out. I have seen those OXO containers, and I am intrigued, I’ll probably end up picking one up and storing it in the cupboard, to keep the light out.
Gus, you’re a nice dude, but if someone can’t taste the difference it’s really not valuable to to insist it’s “wrong”.
Things like coffee, spirits and cooking have measurements as a means of communication, but they aren’t laws but guidelines. You ultimately want to end up being able to consistently produce the results you enjoy. If that means suddenly you doing so in a way that isn’t exactly the same as the “one and true way”, well there’s nothing at all wrong with that.
Hugs and smooches.
I was curious about the Friis, since a pound of coffee tends to last me two weeks or more. This jumped out from the product description on Amazon:
“One Year of Friis Freshness Valves included, to vent freshness damaging CO2 gases”
Jesus. I can accept switching out water filters and having to periodically clean or replace the grease filters on my range hood, but I really don’t want to have to subscribe to my fucking coffee jar.
Still, I’m in a gadget mood, and it is handsome.