Getting ready to brew the coffee!

One of the wins of the trip was the Aeropress Coffee Maker. It’s made by the same folks that make the Aerobie – that flying ring you had when you were growing up. You know, the one you lost because it went so far.

I took it with me to Labrador and it worked great. This time around it went down with us to the Blue Ridge Parkway.

It packs small and cleans up easily. The routine is simple. Set the Aeropress into a cup and add the right amount of grounds. Then just bring some water up to nearly a boil and add it the Aeropress as well. Wait around 30-40 seconds then press the plunger down to force the coffee through the filter. Clean up is easy too — just clean off the filter (or throw it away if that’s how you roll) and rinse off the bottom of the plunger. All done!

I even use it at home to make a quick cup of coffee some mornings. It makes a much better cup of coffee than the (relatively) high priced drip coffee maker that takes up all the counter space.

The one downside is that if you want to make more than four cups of coffee (really it works out to two big mugs) then you need to work in batches which is somewhat a pain. But when you only need a cup of coffee before hitting the road, it’s not a big deal.

The theory of operation is very much like that of an espresso machine: mix the grounds with some hot water then expel the brewed coffee under pressure. The end result is a shot (or more — up to four) of espresso. If you’re in the mood for a more traditional cup of coffee all you need to do is add water to taste.

Another great use is making up a batch of iced coffee. The ice that you add doesn’t dilute the coffee as much as traditional drip coffee since it’s a whole lot more concentrated to begin with.

I highly recommend it. Interestingly, so does Cook’s Illustrated. But I found it before they did – hah!

Check out the manufacturer’s web site for more info.