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The Versatile Aeropress
We received our first shipment of Aerobie Aeropress brewers this morning. I wasn't sure what to expect from a frisbee manufacturer, but the reviews I've read were all very positive. As soon as we could, Lee and I both headed off to the break room to brew up the first two cups. Lee used more water with a medium grind. I used less water with a grind only a little coarser than espresso. 10 seconds of stirring and about 30 seconds of pressing later, Lee had a rich but clean cup of coffee and I had something that resembled espresso, but a fair amount thinner.
How did they taste? Surprisingly good! We were brewing Kenya AA French Mission Chania Estate just 3 days off roast, given to us by the good people at La Terza Coffee in Cincinnati, OH. Yesterday, brewing with a V60, the dominant smell and taste was chai along with more subtle notes of citrus and chocolate. The Aeropress really emphasized a deep dark chocolate sweetness, especially with a finer grind and less water. The dominant taste was sweetened cacao with a buttery mouth-feel, but not as thick as espresso. Very enjoyable!
It's definitely not espresso (don't believe what the box tells you). Even so, it certainly was a an excellent cup of coffee "concentrate," sort of a middle ground between coffee and espresso with lots of the espresso taste and a thinner body. Whatever you call it, I loved it.
The best part about the Aeropress in my opinion is the versatility. Using the same piece of equipment, Lee and I came up with drastically different (but good!) cups. If you read some of the reviews and brewing guides out there, it is obvious that the different ways to brew are numerous. To my knowledge, this brew method is the only one which can produce something good with such drastically different parameters and methods. I can't wait to experiment!