I just began a new job. There's 2 Starbucks within walking distance, but I like good coffee, so I make my own coffee at work. Here's a quick guide to making coffee at work with the amazing, wonderful AeroPress coffeemaker.
Pictured above is my at-work coffee tools. I have a Hario grinder I could bring as well, but I prefer to grind at home (burr grinder, of course) and bring the coffee to work in a air-tight container: a zip-lock bag.
My tools are as follows:
- AeroPress Kit: AeroPress, scoop, filters, filter holder and stirrer
- 12 oz milk frothing pitcher
- Plain white Target coffee cup
- Great, locally roasted beans from Octane Coffee.
With this kit, I can make some great coffee.
At my workplace, we have a Sanyo hot water tea kettle. I've tested the temperature, and it is perfect (around 175 degrees F) for AeroPress brewing. It's not a gooseneck, but it works great!
Also, before I forget, we are doing this inverted, World Aeropress Championship - style. If are new to AeroPress, inverted-style, or just need a refresher, check out this guide by Stumptown Coffee here.
The coffeemaking begins:
After I've prewashed my filter - by the way, the 12 oz pitcher I use is just a bit bigger than the aeropress cap, so it works great for all-in-one storage as well as holding the filter cap for prewashing. Prewash, then just dump it in the sink. - then we are ready to begin.
Step 1: I pour a bit more than a full scoop of coffee into the AeroPress.
Step 2: I add water to the AeroPress, until the coffee + water is about a half-inch from the rim.
Step 3: Let the coffee steep for about a minute. I usually use this time to clean up any water mess.
Step 4: Once the coffee has steeped for a minute or so, it's time to stir. A quick stir breaks up the crust that forms during steeping, and prepares the coffee to be pressed.
Step 5: After the stir, it's time to press, or to quote Merlin Mann, "push a tonx" . Invert the AeroPress carefully on top of your mug, place both hands on top of the plunger, and slowly press down. The key is to get a slow, even press. To get the best results, stop the press as you begin to hear a hissing sound from the AeroPress. Pressing all the way through may result in a more bitter cup.
Step 6: What you have now is a slightly concentrated cup of coffee. If you are more of an espresso fan or need a quick caffeine jolt, feel free to stop here and enjoy! If not, dilute the coffee and if you must, add cream, sugar, or other coffee contaminants. The AeroPress makes a great cup of coffee, and in my opinion, is best when enjoyed pure.
Step 7: Now it's time for clean up. Approach your nearest sink or trash can, press out all remaining liquid, open the cap, press out the grounds, wash, and reassemble. You're done.
This is my recipe for great coffee at work. If you are trying to avoid the communal carafe or bottom of the barrel, burnt coffee, this is a great way to ensure your morning, mid-day, or evening coffee is prepared in an efficient and delicious way!