Coffee!

public

Has been known to shou emousshiöns
DONOR
Joined
Nov 26, 2007
Messages
11,690
Location
Oysterbottom
Car(s)
MX-5 + others
Since I had been experiencing some less-than-perfect sealing on my Aeropress due to the plunger seal wearing, I ordered a new seal from eBay for 8,95 GBP shipped. Swapping it on didn't take too much time, even if I was really careful so I wouldn't split the plastic on my blue Aeropress, as they aren't available anymore and everything is a smoked grey colour. Anyway, the swap really paid off, as there are now no more accidental squirts of coffee up the wall.



You can quite clearly see how the seal edge has worn off. Apparently if you tend to keep the Aeropress pressed down with the grounds still in for extended periods, the rubber will degrade and wear. Well, I did get four years out of mine.
 

calvinhobbes

Forum Addict
DONOR
Joined
Jul 12, 2010
Messages
5,567
Location
near Cologne
The internal seals of the little hand-me-down espresso machine I was using until last autumn must look similar... and cracked. The thing leaked water everywhere and no longer managed to provide adequate pressure. I've finally been able to get a replacement (Krups XP3440), the first sip of coffee from it was a really nice surprise! :happy:

Do you use your Aeropress exactly as instructed (stir for 10 seconds etc.) or have you fiddled around with the details?
 

Vette Boss

Forum Addict
Joined
Nov 14, 2004
Messages
5,250
Location
United States, Britain, in time
Car(s)
2006 Volkswagen Passat 3.6 VR6
Espresso machines are in constant need of maintenance, the one I have (Ascaso PID) needs a gasket refresh every year and bi-weekly cleaning. Working with the machine is a joy though, and the results are always worth it.
 

public

Has been known to shou emousshiöns
DONOR
Joined
Nov 26, 2007
Messages
11,690
Location
Oysterbottom
Car(s)
MX-5 + others
Do you use your Aeropress exactly as instructed (stir for 10 seconds etc.) or have you fiddled around with the details?
I recently watched an instruction video where the guy weighed his grounds and timed his stir and whatnot. I just rolled my eyes at the endless precision of it, especially since he appeared to humblebrag about the procedure like it was just a little chemical experiment he does every morning. It would just scare people off using the AeroPress if you had to use a digital timer every time.

What I do is:

? Assemble the AeroPress in an inverted fashion on the countertop, fully extended but secure
? Pour in the same amount (two measuring cups or just under setting 4 on my Krups) of freshly ground coffee or decently sealed pre-ground stuff, every time
? Use clear, cold water that's just boiled on the stove when I pour it in, I use the black hexagonal funnel to pour in a third or half the water
? Stir for what generally feels like ten seconds, main idea is to get all the grounds wet and stirred
? Pour in rest of the water, screw on filter cap with a wet filter
? Take my IKEA steel mug that's originally used for milk foaming, put it on top with the hexagonal funnel included
? Move the whole package in a gentle stirring movement a couple times before inverting it again on the countertop for the pressing, to make sure everything inside it is on the move
? Long, linear press until the end, I take my time even if the plunger feels like it's going down easy
? Pour a little of the hot water in the cups so it's vaguely Americano-like

This results in an even enough pressing every time. I could probably insert some precision to it, but right now it feels off the cuff enough.
 
Last edited:

MXM

I paid for this title
DONOR
Joined
Jun 9, 2004
Messages
5,627
Location
Finland
I used to do inverted method because it was hyped so much on youtube, but now I find the normal method to produce pretty much identical result, and it's slightly faster for me.

Coffee goes in, followed by water, stir the mix, plunger on top of the tube (about 1cm in), wait for however long it feels right today (less than a minute anyway), then long and smooth pressing action. I don't add water after the press, I fill the aeropress up to 4, which gives me the right amount for a cup.
 

calvinhobbes

Forum Addict
DONOR
Joined
Jul 12, 2010
Messages
5,567
Location
near Cologne
Inverting the thing sounds ineresting... and like something I'd mess up horribly the first time at the very least.

I could probably insert some precision to it, but right now it feels off the cuff enough.
I may have to agree. :D

Myself, I just look at the clock in the kitchen to determine a ten-or-so-second brewing time. Everything else is by the book, as it were. However, I think I should try some variations because the different coffees you can get out of one kind of beans are too much fun to be left "unexplored". This recent acquisition*:



produces results that are again different from other ways of making coffee.


*stock photo, not mine
 
Last edited:

public

Has been known to shou emousshiöns
DONOR
Joined
Nov 26, 2007
Messages
11,690
Location
Oysterbottom
Car(s)
MX-5 + others
I add the extra water because of the amount of coffee I put in. The inverted method is just something I've gotten used to, and it feels more reasonable to scrape the end of the plunger with the stir bat and not the paper filter that's underneath it all. It's not as topsy-turvy as it might feel/look during the first times, I've only messed up once or twice and the last time was because the plunger seal was so very worn it all came apart.

What's the... sack dripper there?
 

MXM

I paid for this title
DONOR
Joined
Jun 9, 2004
Messages
5,627
Location
Finland
...it feels more reasonable to scrape the end of the plunger with the stir bat and not the paper filter that's underneath it all.
The stirring tool is just short enough to not touch the filter, that's why it has that massive handle ;)
 

public

Has been known to shou emousshiöns
DONOR
Joined
Nov 26, 2007
Messages
11,690
Location
Oysterbottom
Car(s)
MX-5 + others
Ah, it touches the plunger when the press is inverted. I don't mind it :)
 

calvinhobbes

Forum Addict
DONOR
Joined
Jul 12, 2010
Messages
5,567
Location
near Cologne
What's the... sack dripper there?
That is exactly what it is: a small bag made out of finely woven cotton cloth. It's called a "coador" (sieve) in Portuguese and I've only ever seen them in Brazil. They come in different sizes, to be used for everything from a single cup to a whole pot.
 

MacGuffin

Forum Addict
DONOR
Joined
Mar 29, 2008
Messages
8,274
Location
Wilhelmshaven, Germany
Car(s)
'17 Ford Mustang GT Fastback
I couldn't be bothered with one of those fancy espresso machines, I prefer coffee the old-fashioned way, meaning a filter coffee with either a hand filter or a standard coffee machine. Besides, cleaning and maintaining those complicated things is too much of an effort for me. I once talked to a guy who repairs such fancy espresso machines and since then I plainly refuse to drink coffee from one, except it is cleaned from the inside on a daily basis. The term "bio coffee" gets a whole different meaning, if you don't.

But of course I have demands.

For once I have a sensitive stomach and therefore avoid what I call "industrial coffee". Meaning I don't buy the usual stuff you can get in shops or supermarkets, because it is made on a large industrial scale and therefore has been roasted too hot and too quickly during mass production. Ever felt that coffee tastes slightly sour or bitter or gives you a heartburn? That's the result of wrong roasting. Properly roasted coffee is never bitter or sour, even when it cools down.

It's actually quite hard to get good coffee in Germany. The average German coffee drinker will gracefully consume substandard beans and say "Mmmmh... tasty". There's a running gag in the plantations around the world: "Don't throw away the rejects, send it to Germany, they drink everything!"

So since I cannot manage without my one or two cuppas in the morning but still want to maintain a healthy stomach, I had to look everywhere, willing to pay more for my coffee beans, if I had to. And a few months ago I found a fair trade shop in my vicinity, only a few kilometers out of town, that roasts its own coffee in a small, traditional drum oven -- slowly (around 20 minutes) and at temperatures between 180 and 200 degrees Celsius. For comparison: Big coffee brands usually roast only a few minutes at temperatures up to 800 degrees C. The result is more or less carbon, the same stuff you get when you left your sausage on the grill for too long.

Since I went to said shop today again to get my monthly ration of coffee, I took a few pictures:

The oven:


The counter:


The coffee:


My current favourite is the "Bio Mexico" Arabica.

Oh, and of course I buy the ungrinded beans and grind them fresh before I brew the coffee. For that I have a traditional coffee grinder from grandma's days :D Here's a picture:
 
Last edited:

Vette Boss

Forum Addict
Joined
Nov 14, 2004
Messages
5,250
Location
United States, Britain, in time
Car(s)
2006 Volkswagen Passat 3.6 VR6
I think the US is similarly a dumping ground for a lot of over-roasted gut rot coffee like Starbucks or Folgers, etc. Coffee quality is not just roasting, of course. You have to consider the growing condition of the plants and the sourcing of quality green coffee. How they're processed before roasting, has a huge effect on the taste as well.
 

MacGuffin

Forum Addict
DONOR
Joined
Mar 29, 2008
Messages
8,274
Location
Wilhelmshaven, Germany
Car(s)
'17 Ford Mustang GT Fastback
Yes, definitely. But people also have to be willing to pay the price in the shops and mostly they aren't. Most people buy a fancy espresso machine for 2000 bucks or so and then use the cheapest coffee they can get their hands on, from ALDI for 3,49 Euros a pound.

The one I drink, which was grown ecologically and originates from small, independent farmers, who sell their stuff off-side the world market prices, and who grow the coffee naturally in companion planting, costs about 12 Euros a pound.

Expensive? Yes. But also worth it.
 
Last edited:

Vette Boss

Forum Addict
Joined
Nov 14, 2004
Messages
5,250
Location
United States, Britain, in time
Car(s)
2006 Volkswagen Passat 3.6 VR6
I'm somewhere in the middle with coffee, the most high end coffees at over $20 per pound are too expensive. I stick with a nice medium roast espresso for around $10 per pound. Grocery coffee will not come near my grinder and espresso machine. Most mornings, I will make a latte either over ice or with steamed milk, sometimes with a flavour syrup. Great coffee is always a bit of a struggle, although the effort is very rewarding.
 

MacGuffin

Forum Addict
DONOR
Joined
Mar 29, 2008
Messages
8,274
Location
Wilhelmshaven, Germany
Car(s)
'17 Ford Mustang GT Fastback
Yeah and it should be pointed out that this isn't about being posh or a lifestyle thing. It is about enjoying a great drink in good quality. Coffee is something that needs to be enjoyed, when consumed. And for that certain conditions have to be met, otherwise the result is just awful.

Anyway, here's a month's ration of my current favourite sort:



It's a medium sort of thing: Aromatic but not too strong. Very pleasant to the tongue and even still drinkable when it's gotten cold. I admit I'm a milk and sugar type, black coffee isn't for me.
 
Last edited:

bone

"bangle for president"
DONOR
Joined
Jan 14, 2004
Messages
16,497
Location
belgium!!
Car(s)
Volvo V40 & Yamaha Banshee
I'm a milk guy! No black for me either, but I refuse to drink coffee that has sugar in it! Makes it horrible
But when I think a coffee tastes great, most find it way to bitter...
 

public

Has been known to shou emousshiöns
DONOR
Joined
Nov 26, 2007
Messages
11,690
Location
Oysterbottom
Car(s)
MX-5 + others
I've been using the Hario V60 again, it produces such a smooth cup. For coffee, I've recently gotten some L?fberg's Lila Crescendo.



A definite bonus is that the bag is really easy to open, compared to some brands :lol:
 

public

Has been known to shou emousshiöns
DONOR
Joined
Nov 26, 2007
Messages
11,690
Location
Oysterbottom
Car(s)
MX-5 + others
That is exactly what it is: a small bag made out of finely woven cotton cloth. It's called a "coador" (sieve) in Portuguese and I've only ever seen them in Brazil. They come in different sizes, to be used for everything from a single cup to a whole pot.
I ordered one from Japan now, for 29 eur shipped.

 

calvinhobbes

Forum Addict
DONOR
Joined
Jul 12, 2010
Messages
5,567
Location
near Cologne
I ordered one from Japan now, for 29 eur shipped.
Is there anything coffee-related that Hario don't make? :-D

It's best to rinse the cloth thoroughly and then soak in in coffee (can be "recycled" used grounds from e.g. your Aeropress) for quite some time, to give it a taste of coffee. Otherwise, your first few cups may have an aftertaste of cotton.
 
Last edited:

public

Has been known to shou emousshiöns
DONOR
Joined
Nov 26, 2007
Messages
11,690
Location
Oysterbottom
Car(s)
MX-5 + others
That makes sense. Every time I use a paper filter on anything, I rinse it as well.
 
Top