The Aerobie Aeropress coffee maker consistently makes the richest and cleanest cup of coffee of just about any other coffee maker out there.
Many people compare the Aeropress to a Chemex in that it makes a full bodied cup of coffee free of sediment or particles. Many even compare it to espresso noting it’s strength and pressurized brew technique.
In some ways the Aeropress is also a lot like a conventional pour over coffee maker mixed with a stovetop moka pot. It makes coffee that is strong and almost espresso like as it’s brewed under pressure but it’s clean and free of mud like a pour-over or drip coffee maker.
At Gathering Grounds Cafe we like to think of the coffee made in an Aeropress like a cup of really strong french press coffee but lacking some of the oils and grit.
For some this is an issue. The small granuals of coffee dust make a cup of coffee feel more dense on your tongue which some people like but we tend to think a cleaner cup is better and more enjoyable.
In all ways of looking at the Aeropress it’s impossible to say it makes bad coffee even if it’s not your favorite brewing technique. And considering how inexpensive the coffee maker and filters are it’s hard to argue for not owning one in your home cafe.
If you want to learn more about the Aeropress before committing to buying one then scroll down and read our full Aeropress review embellished with lots of video and answers to frequently asked questions.
Our Aerobie Aeropress Review With Video
We feel that a full review is inadequate without answering questions about a product and demonstrating how it works. So along those lines we have produced a full set of FAQ’s where we answer your questions about the Aeropress, demonstrating exactly how it works.
Is the Aeropress Dishwasher Safe?
The Aeropress is completely safe to clean in a dishwasher on the top shelf. This is good to know if you get it particularly dirty one day but it’s not necessary after every use.
You don’t really need to give it a thorough cleaning all that often because the plunger does a great job of wiping the inside clean as you go. This means that a quick rinse through after use is usually all you need. It’s important to eject the puck as soon as you’ve finished brewing to keep the need for cleaning to a minimum.
Is the Aeropress BPA Free?
The Aeropress as sold here at Gathering Grounds is entirely BPA free.
There used to be a part of the Aeropress kit that was made with materials containing BPA. Although tests were conducted which showed that none of the BPA made it into the coffee, the materials have since been changed. This decision was taken to disassociate with the negative perceptions people have of BPA, not because of any harmful effects of using the product.
Is the Aeropress Worth It?
The Aeropress is great value for money in our opinion. Here at Gathering Grounds we have two packages available, the Aeropress with 350 filters is the most popular option.
If you’d like it with a tote bag which lets all the world know you’re a hardcore coffee nut, then you can get the Aeropress with filters and the bag for just a bit more. It’s such a small amount of money for a coffee maker that gives a rich and smooth coffee in around 20 seconds and allows for a lot of experimentation to get the right cup for you.
If you don’t like rich coffee and prefer lighter roasts then this probably isn’t the coffee maker for you, but if you enjoy espresso yet don’t want to spend a bunch of money on an espresso maker, this is definitely the next best thing.
It’s portable, self-cleaning, takes up hardly any kitchen space, costs little and makes a lovely cup of coffee. Worth it? In a word, yes.
How To Make Aeropress Coffee
It’s a simple process and everything you need is included in the pack for you.
This is how to make a double espresso:
- You simply place a filter in the filter cap, reattach to the chamber and stand the whole thing on top of the cup you want to use.
- Then, you use the Aeropress scoop to measure two scoops of fine ground coffee and place into the chamber.
- Then you need to add hot water, for a double serving you need to fill up to the number 2 marked on the side. For lighter roasts Aerobie recommends using water at 185F, for darker roasts 175F.
- Stir the coffee into the water, with the stirrer provided, for about 10 seconds.
- Then wet the rubber seal and gently plunge the brew through the filter. Ta-da. A double espresso is yours to enjoy.
To make an Americano, you just top the mug up with hot water, for a latte just fill the mug up with hot milk. It really is easy to use and versatile.
Of course as with all coffee makers, there is room for experimentation and the full spectrum of personal taste though, so by all means play around with these instructions until you get a coffee that’s perfect for you.
Here’s a great tutorial by CoffeeNate. He shows the inverted Aeropress brew method which takes about a minute once your water has been heated.
How Does The Aeropress Work
The Aeropress works in a similar way to French Press coffee makers, both use total immersion brewing and pressure.
The results however better resemble that of an espresso machine in style and practicality though, and some of the common failings of French Press coffee have been ironed out. The Aeropress is very well designed to make the most of the beans, by pressure-brewing them quickly and at lower temperatures.
- The pressure method means that more flavor can be gotten from the grounds while removing the risk of burning the beans which can impair the taste and make the coffee bitter. The pressure brew also is faster resulting in less caffeine which may be good or bad depending on who you ask.
- The quick brewing time means that you can avoid overextraction, which gives the coffee a bitterness and acidity which is tough on the taste buds and also on your digestive system.
- The lower temperature brewing also helps to produce a lower ph coffee too. If you are a little sensitive to acidic coffee then this can be a game changer for you. Just pair this brewing technique with a dark roasted low-acid coffee brand and you’re days of coffee induced acid reflux may be gone!
The micro-filtering technique is also more refined than a French Press, giving a smoother cup with no sediment.
Compared to the espresso machine, while being about a tenth of the price of a decent machine, the Aeropress is much simpler too, and gives a versatile cup which provides a great base for espresso-based drinks such as lattes and cappuccinos.
How Much Coffee Do You Use In An Aeropress?
The rule of thumb is one scoop per serving of espresso (5oz), the Aeropress makes up to four 5oz servings in one press.
Of course you can play around with the instructions as much as you like, if you prefer strong or weak coffee then adjust the amount you’re using accordingly.
Does The Aeropress Make Real Espresso?
The definition of espresso involves a higher pressure brew than the Aeropress achieves. There are many similarities in the coffee made by the espresso machines and the Aeropress however, so the term espresso is most appropriate.
Read this post describing the differences between stovetop espresso and real espresso, much of the comparison is the same for the Aeropress as well.
Does The Aeropress Come With Filters?
The Aeropress, as bought from our store, comes with 350 filters, which is more than enough to get you started.
The paper filters can be used more than once if rinsed carefully after use. They are cheap to replace though, so whether that’s necessary is up to you.
Where Do You Buy Aeropress Filters?
The Aeropress filters are available from almost everywhere that sells the machine itself. Look no further than our Gathering Grounds Store where you can buy refills in packs of 350 for a very reasonable price.
How Many Cups Of Coffee Does The Aeropress Make?
The Aeropress has a capacity that can make between 8-16 ounces of brewed pseudo espresso, a little more than two double shots. Most people don’t brew to maximum however because it’s better at making strong coffee with less water.
It’s quick enough to make them though, as it only takes 30 seconds to brew. If you needed more you could easily make another batch before the first bit went cold.
Is The Aeropress Easy To Clean?
The Aeropress is easy to clean, it pretty much cleans itself. All that you need to do for regular everyday cleaning is rinse the plunger under the tap for a few seconds. The plunger itself cleans the inside of the chamber and prevents the build-up of any sediment.
Can You Brew Tea With It?
Yes you can indeed brew tea in your Aeropress, loose leaf tea can be brewed with it although some report problems with the filters letting particles through to the cup. There is video evidence of a successful brew here but we’re in the coffee business, and can’t claim sufficient expertise to tell you how that tea would meet the standards of a tea connoisseur. It looks like a vessel that can brew things well and the video is pretty persuasive.
What Type Of Plastic Is The Aeropress Made Of?
There are three types of plastic used to make the Aeropress; copolyester is used to make the clear chamber and plunger; the filter cap, filter holder, stirrer and funnel are made of polypropylene and the rubber seal is made of a thermoplastic elastomer.
The materials are all FDA approved and none of them contain any BPA or phthalates. Good to know.
Does The Aeropress Make Crema?
The Aeropress does make a crema occasionally, but it does not produce enough pressure to create an espresso like an espresso machine does. The coffee does bear some resemblance to that created by machines that cost ten times as much, but the Aeropress isn’t making espresso, it’s making good coffee. Even if it were making espresso, however, the beans used and the grind setting have a lot to do with producing a good crema so it’s not only about the brewing method.
If you really want to try to produce crema with the Aeropress you’ll need to create more pressure to the brew, forcing the coffee through the filter at higher pressure could give a better crema to the cup, but to deviate from the instructions to get a crema may well compromise the taste of the coffee too much to make it worthwhile.
The best way to get an espresso is to buy an espresso machine, they are the only answer to the level of pressure required, no inexpensive piece of equipment is going to give you the 9 bar of pressure that espresso needs. This is coffee, albeit coffee with espresso-like aspirations.
What Is The Best Grind Setting?
The Aeropress makes coffee under pressure, in a similar way to an espresso machine but using less pressure and more simply. Pressurized brewing and a low steeping time mean that the grind needs to be really fine (small) to get a rich cup, grind too coarsely and you’ll get underextraction, and that would be a terrible shame.
To get the best coffee you’ll need to use a ‘fine drip’ grind, or even an espresso grind for single servings.
If you’re grinding your own, you can get the desired consistency easily from any entry level burr grinder.
Best Alternatives To The Aeropress
The Aeropress isn’t for everybody – we understand that. It’s best for people who like (and want) really strong coffee quickly and don’t want to buy or learn to use an espresso machine.
Good alternatives to the Aeropress include:
- the De’Longhi EC155 15 BAR Pump Espresso Maker, an entry level espresso machine,
- the Bialetti Moka Express, a stovetop moka pot, and
- the Handpresso Wild Hybrid, a manual powered espresso maker.
If you like the Aeropress however then click here to take a look at pricing and specs.