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As I have mentioned before in one of my reviews, we recently had a family holiday. Well with my eldest son usually having the latest or unusual gadgets around, I was looking forward to seeing what he had discovered now. So as we unpacked he asked me if I would like a cup of coffee. As I explained that I hadn't unpacked my jar of instant yet, he asked why was I drinking that when he knew I loved my "Proper" coffee. He had brought me a coffee grinder a few years back, but at the moment I didn't have a decent coffee maker and didn't fancy having a bulky new one sitting on the breakfast bar.
So out he popped his new gadget which I had never seen before nor knew that it existed. This was the Areobie Aeropress Coffee Maker. This consists of two tubes made from plastic in a smokey colour. Start by putting in a couple of spoons of your favourite filter coffee ( I used to buy mine from Starbucks,but have found that some of the supermarkets have a great range to choose from now) into the tube put a filter in and sit the Areobie Areopress on top of your mug. Fill with hot water and wait for 1 minute, then press and plunge the top part right down and there you have your perfect mug of coffee.
Aeropress say that this has " a unique vacuum filter system so that only water and air come in contact with the coffee preserving it's taste". It does make a lovely cup of coffee so whether that is why I really don't know!
Now apart from the coffee tasting great the best bit is still to come, this is so easy to clean. Just take the cap of the tube ( or chamber as Areobie discribe it), push the plunger and take it to the bin and one hard bang and the whole lot falls out ( coffee and filter that is!). Now just a quick rinse under the taps and it is ready for your next cuppa. So much easier that some of the other coffee makers on the market.
What really impressed me with this was that it takes up hardly any space in your kitchen and as I seem to slowly be getting more and more cooking appliances, this was what I was looking for. I'm the only one in our house that drinks coffee in the morning, so this is perfect for me. Not so good if there are more people wanting coffee, but having said that it is so easy to clean that one quick rinse and it is ready in seconds. There were several of us using it on holiday and it didn't create any problems at all when it came to wanting a coffee.
I have since purchased one of these and think that at the price of £25.36 including 350 filters this is a great price. If you pay £26.99 you get the same as above plus an extra 350 filters, which is great value as the filters to buy on there own are £3.50 which still isn't bad. So it is worth paying the bit extra to get the filters which should last some time. The price does vary on Amazon so it is worth watching this as I've seen it as low as £22 recently!
I'd been eyeing up and comparing various coffee machines for the past couple of months with the intention of buying one in the January sales when I discovered that one of the prizes I was to receive from dooyoo after winning a place in their recent '10 days of Christmas' competition was going to be a coffee maker. Could it be a Tassimo? I thought to myself, or would it be a simple glass cafetiere? I waited in anticipation for my prize bundle to arrive and as it turned out the coffee maker I received was this, the Aerobie Aeropress which, as it was going to prove would end up being a pretty decent piece of kit that makes a perfect cup of coffee.
**Out of the box and in use**
Packaged in a hexagonal cylinder box the various components that make up the Aeropress are daunting when removed, thankfully there is a comprehensive and easy to read instruction pamphlet which explains how to arrange the parts together. Included in the kit is:
The Aeropress itself which comprises a plunger, ground coffee bean holder and screw-on filter cap
A large supply of Filters and a cannister to hold them in
All the components are made from toughened plastic which feel well made, all corners and edges are smooth to the touch and whilst are not heavy they certainly feel robust. Referring to the instructions for its first use revealed that to make a cup of coffee all I would need to do is place a couple of scoops of ground coffee into the holder, screw the filter cap containing one of the paper filters in place on the underside, position this over my mug ready to receive the brewed coffee itself and finally use the plunger to press the coffee and water mixture through the filter and into my mug. Although that may sound complicated in actual fact the process is easy and takes literally seconds to produce a 'real' cup of coffee which tastes just as good as what you can expect to get in the likes of Costa Coffee or Starbucks.
**Good Points and Bad**
There are many positive aspects to owning a Aerobie Aeropress as far as I can see, it isnt a kitchen appliance in the traditional sense in that unlike other coffee making machines this doesn't need electricity to run it and takes up no space on a kitchen worktop when in use. It can easily be stored away in a cupboard when not needed and is remarkably easy to clean only needed a quick wipe over and drying with a tea towel. Unlike cafetiere's which can usually make one or two cups of coffee at a time and tend to let coffee bits through to bottom of your cup or mug the filter on the AeroPress completely catches all of the ground coffee beans and produces a bit-free cup of coffee. You can make up to 4 decent sized cups of coffee using the Aerobie system depending on how strong you like to take it which is ideal for me as there are only 2 of us at home and I am the one who drinks more coffee than my wife anyway and at under £20.00 for the system this is an inexpensive alternative to the big brand named coffee makers that are available to buy.
Of course there are negative aspects to this system, nothing is perfect after all. The main concern I would have with this is would be for anyone with dexterity problems, the plunger which presses the water and coffee through the filter is incredibly tight and requires just the right amount of effort to successfully press the mixture through the filter. This does take a few attempts to master I have to admit and if you are spectacularly clumsy then you will also run the risk of dislodging the system from the mug it is placed on and potentially run the risk of spilling boiling water all over you and your surrounding areas. Care is needed to use the Aerobie and whilst I personally have had no problems using it I really wouldnt recommend its purchase for anyone with poor coordination or limited use of their hands.
For anyone who enjoys coffee though this is a remarkably clever little system which according to the promotional blurb that advertises it is "an entirely new way to make coffee" and that much is undeniably true. The results have always been great, a smooth, flavour-packed drink which I always enjoy without the hassle of having to clean up after myself. The Aerobie bridges the gap between the expensive filter coffee making machines and the messy cafetiere's and for me has been a remarkable item which gets plenty of use. If you like a variation if the types of coffee you drink this can accommodate your requirements, 'espresso-style' shots, latte's and Cappuccino's can be made with this system so long as you have the beans to make them with and a frother to agitate the milk. You completely control how much water you add and the amount of ground coffee beans you use so what you make is up to you, I simply use mine for filter coffee and have yet to make a bad drink with this system.
**Price, Conclusion and My Rating**
The Aerobie Aeropress is available to buy from amazon.co.uk from a third party seller for £19.55 at the time of writing this review and I consider this to be a great price for what it actually offers. Mine was free thanks to dooyoo sending me this as part of my prize bundle and had it not been for them I would never have discovered this for myself and would have ended up paying £80.00 for an electric coffee maker. Whilst this system is perhaps not the most stylish addition to anyone's kitchen and many people may be put off by its plastic construction if you are simply looking for something to make filter coffee with and have only a limited budget then I would have no hesitations in recommending this to them.
I can't award a perfect star rating due to the minor concerns raised in this review, however 4 stars still represents an excellent score so that's what the Aerobie Aeropress gets from me. Thanks for reading my review.
To see this in use check out the Aerobie website for more information and instructional video demonstration:
I already owned a coffee maker when I came across this product. However, it looked so unusual and promised to deliver a quality cup of coffee in the time it takes to make an instant, so I thought I would give it a go.
I am a sucker for gadgets, and was keen to get started with the AeroPress right away. The kit is comprised of a number of components. The first is the press itself, a long funnel comprised of transparent plastic, a scoop for removing coffee debris from the machine, a stirrer, a funnel and a set of microfilters in a handy container. Because the device can be disassembled it makes storage of the different components very simple, although conversely it does mean that it you misplace one it will be much trickier to use the others to make a cup of coffee.
The AeroPress does not use boiling water to make the coffee, as many other coffee machines do. This, the packaging boasts, is what gives coffee from the AeroPress a rich flavour 'with lower acidity and without bitterness'. The coffee grounds and water are mixed together for ten seconds before the mixture is forced through the microfilter via air pressure. The entire process, it claims, takes a mere thirty seconds. On the first few occasions I used the device I followed these instructions to the letter, but discovered that this rapid brewing method yielded coffee that was lacking in body and richness. With a bit of experimentation I discovered that leaving the grounds and the water to brew for an additional thirty seconds had a great impact on flavour. The resulting coffee has a real kick to it, and sometimes I need to dilute it with water.
Filling the AeroPress to full capacity will produce enough coffee for three regular size mugs. I often fill it halfway to give me a breakfast's worth of coffee, and this suits me ideally.
The machine is very easy to clean - much more so than a regular coffee maker, but slightly more troublesome than a cafetiere. You merely need to remove the press (which only needs rinsing under the tap), and scoop out the disc of coffee grounds, then rinse the rest of the apparatus in the sink. It does not require scrubbing.
I love the idea of the AeroPress, even though I have found that its rapid brewing instructions will not yield the perfect cup of coffee. With a bit of modification to these instructions you can produce coffee that has a rich body and strong flavour. For £20 this is an innovative device, yet I still prefer my coffee maker and even my cafetiere over the AeroPress. The process of creating a drink in this manner seems a little too modern for my taste, although gadget lovers will adore it.