The Aerobie AeroPress by Steve Willingham

We have amazing news! We now have the Aerobie AeroPress available on our retail shelves!

It’s not the first time we’ve featured this brewer. Back at the 2017 Caffeine Crawl, we held an AeroPress class to show people how to do Ritual Coffee’s recipe. We promptly sold out and haven’t restocked them since. We think now is the time to bring them back! We’ll get to why later.

AeroPress Brewer Kit

AeroPress Brewer Kit

The AeroPress is a versatile single cup brewer, surprisingly invented by a Flying Disc company (yeah, like Frisbees). It combines some of the best parts of pour over, immersion, and manual pressure brewers to give you lots of control over how you brew. You can create a perfect cup of coffee in as little as one minute. It also has inspired some coffee professionals to get really into recipe development. For some examples, check out the recipes used at the World Aeropress Championship.

Of the World Aeropress Championship, inventor Alan Adler told Sprudge in a 2014 interview,

The AeroPress really is a perfect thing for a competition because it’s so flexible. It encourages innovation. You couldn’t really have that with an ordinary espresso machine because it’s pretty set with how it works–but the AeroPress, there’s just an unlimited amount of ways you can use it.

We think we’ve developed an outstanding recipe to give you a perfect cup, every time. A cup with a full body and clear, distinct flavor—or as we like to call it, clarity.

Here’s what you’ll need for this AeroPress Recipe:

AeroPress Brewer Kit
Fresh Coffee
Kettle
Third Wave Water
Gram Scale
Grinder

Coffee to Water Ratio: 19g / 300g
Brew Time: 1 minute 30 seconds
Grind: 10 on Baratza Encore

AEROPRESS COFFEE RECIPE

  1. Bring your Third Wave Water to a boil and set it aside (or set your EKG to 205º).

  2. Place filter in the filter holder.

  3. Screw the filter holder into the AeroPress.

  4. Pour hot water through the filter to rinse.

  5. Set your AeroPress on your favorite mug.

  6. Using the funnel, pour 19g (or two scoops) ground coffee into the AeroPress (grind on 10 on your Encore).

  7. Start your timer as you pour 150g water into the AeroPress.

  8. Using the paddle, stir gently for 10 seconds.

  9. Add another 150g of water.

  10. Remove your cup and AeroPress from your scale.

  11. When your timer says 1 minute, put the plunger into the AeroPress and gently press down until you hear a small hiss, then stop.

  12. Unscrew the filter holder and press the coffee puck into the trash for easy cleanup!

  13. Drink some coffee.


If you feel like a little more hands on experience with the Aeropress might help, meet us at the shop on Tuesday the 22nd.

So why now? Well, to be honest, we’ve always loved AeroPresses, but we’ve recently been turned onto yet another of Fellow’s inventions: the Prismo. More to come on that soon. Keep your eyes on this blog.

Bring Your Own Atmos: A New Coffee Refill Program by Steve Willingham

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

One thing that we've always been interested in at Clarity is finding smart ways to minimize our environmental impact. It starts with always using reusable ceramic for drinks when you're sticking around the cafe and encouraging people to bring their own cups. Shortly after we opened, we partnered with Fertile Ground Cooperative for our recycling. And, of course, most of us bike, walk, or take public transportation to work.

Recently, we received a shipment of Huskee Cups, reusable to go cups made from coffee parchment (husks), a really cool concept! Not only can you cut down on one use paper cups by using a Huskee Cup, these cups create a use for an otherwise discarded byproduct of coffee processing, and it creates another revenue stream for coffee farmers!

Huskee Cup.jpg

Going Bagless

Our next step, is what we're calling Bring Your Own Atmos.

We've talked on this blog about how the Atmos Vacuum Canister can make your coffee taste better and last longer, but we've never talked about using it as a means to cut one use bags. So here's what we'll do: you bring your own Atmos and we will fill it with twelve ounces of the coffee of the day (just ask your barista what's on today!) or the espresso blend from the bulk coffee we keep behind the bar, drastically reducing the amount of packaging used. Then we'll apply a $3 discount off of your whole bean coffee!

Fellow Atmos Coffee Beans Pouring.jpg

Don't have an Atmos? We have them in stock! Or bring a different container. Just remember that it will need to be strong enough to withstand the built up pressure from when your coffee degasses over time.

Still just need to grab a bag? No worries! We'll stay stocked up on our regular retail bags too!

Atmos Full Coffee Beans Hand.jpg

We're excited about this program, and let's not forget the hidden benefit: it could make your already tasty coffee taste even better! And we're all about that! If you're looking for some other ways to make your coffee taste better, check out our Chemex Brew Guide and the Education Tab on the blog! And be on the look out for some events coming up later this month!

Sign up for our newsletter to stay informed on the latest events and happenings in the shop!

Coffee Questions: Why Temperature Matters by Caleb Savage

Ever tried to make a cup of coffee with water that isn’t hot enough? I didn’t intend to, but the downside of having a variable-temperature kettle is, if you make tea the night before at 175ºF and don’t change the temperature back, you’ll end up with a muddy mess that takes too long to draw down, tastes aggressive and sour, and barely qualifies as a hot cup of coffee.

But why does brewing temperature matter? More specifically, how does temperature affect coffee brewing and how hot should my water be to make a good cup of coffee?

coffee+in+diner+mugs+with+friends.jpg

Coffee Brewing Basics

The goal of coffee brewing is to extract from the coffee beans all of the good flavor characteristics with none of the bad. Using tools like time, temperature, coffee to water ratio, coffee grind size, and agitation, we can adjust extraction until we get a coffee that is balanced, with a bright and clear tasting note, pleasant mouthfeel and body, and a sweet, clean finish. 

Trying to make decisions about five different variables is way too complicated, especially since it’s likely before you’ve had a cup of coffee. Too make it easier, we recommend using brewing recipes. A good brew recipe is straightforward, easy to replicate, and does a good job of balancing all of the variables for you to create a great cup of coffee. So how does temperature affect brewing?

Water Extracts

Water quality is important. We use the variables mentioned earlier, including temperature to control how water extracts the goods from the coffee. Adjusting temperature determines how quickly the water will be able to extract coffee compounds. As with cooking, the hotter the temperature, the faster the desired change will occur. This is one of the reasons why a shot of espresso can be brewed in thirty seconds while cold brew can take up to sixteen or eighteen hours to brew.

Brewing an AeroPress with a Bona Vita Kettle

Brewing an AeroPress with a Bona Vita Kettle

Slurry vs. Kettle

So water temperature matters, but water temperature at what point? 

It’s always been easiest to measure the temperature of the water in the kettle. Whether using the off-boil method of a stovetop kettle or using an electric kettle, it’s been fairly common to recommend your kettle be within the SCA brewing guidelines of between 195ºF-205ºF. However, just because your kettle reads 200ºF, it doesn’t mean that the coffee is actually being extracted at that temperature.

When the water leaves the kettle, it travels 4-6 inches through 70-75ºF air, into a brewer that has (hopefully) been preheated, and a bed of room temperature, dry coffee grounds. If you start out at 200ºF, you may end up at 195ºF or 190ºF by the end of your brewing. To counteract this, we recommend setting your kettle at a higher temperature and making sure to thoroughly preheat your brewer. We recommend starting with 210ºF on an EKG kettle. However, coffees tend to become more soluble the darker they are roasted, so if you’re drinking darker roasted coffee than what you find here, you might benefit from a lower temperature.

Brewing a 10 Cup Chemex with a Stagg Kettle and Acaia Pearl Scale

Brewing a 10 Cup Chemex with a Stagg Kettle and Acaia Pearl Scale

Temperature Experiment

Since temperature isn’t the only variable we use to brew coffee, we can adjust the other variables to adapt to lower brewing temperatures. Slowing down your pouring can keep the water in the kettle longer as long as you make sure to keep the coffee bed saturated, grinding your coffee more finely, or incorporating some stirring into your brewing can all increase extraction.

No one wants to drink a bad cup of coffee, so instead of suffering through a pourover at 175ºF, try making a cup of coffee at five degrees cooler than you normally would, but adjust grind to a slightly finer size. These variables should offset each other, and you should end up with a similarly tasting cup of coffee!

Let us know what other coffee questions you have!

Sign up for our newsletter to stay informed!

What About Breakfast at Clarity? Granola + Yogurt by Caleb Savage

We’re thrilled to announce our newest addition to our food menu!

Granola with yogurt to go

Granola with yogurt to go

We love the fresh pastries we get every day from our friends at Brown’s Bakery & Kitchen No. 324! Crullers and fritters and croissants are tasty additions to any morning, but they’re not necessarily an every morning treat. With the addition of granola, we’ve got a great option to pair with a coffee or latte!

What’s inside the granola:

  • rolled oats

  • pistachios

  • almonds

  • pecans

  • sunflower seeds

  • hazelnuts

  • raisins

  • dried cranberries

  • honey

Granola with milk for here

Granola with milk for here

Pairing Options

Our granola comes standard with Maple Hill organic grass-fed plain whole milk yogurt. If yogurt isn’t your thing, you can substitute it with whole or skim milk. If you’re ditching the dairy, add your favorite alternative milk for an extra dollar! We love it with the oat milk.

We’re thrilled to be able to offer another snack option in the cafe! Next time you’re in the Arts District looking for something to get you through the day, pop in and give it a try!