Inverted Brewing with the AeroPress
Take your AeroPress and flip it on its head! Brew your coffee upside down.
Once you’ve had your AeroPress for a while, you might be starting to get restless, wanting to try new things. Well, today we’re going to show you how to brew coffee in your AeroPress using the “inverted method”.
The inverted method is a type of brewing that was invented by baristas. Since baristas are perfectionists (which can be good and bad, depending), they wanted to figure out a way of making coffee with your AeroPress more efficiently. Particularly, they wanted to eliminate any leakage from the equation. During the regular brewing method, a small amount of liquid leaks from the chamber to the cup: This is no brewed coffee and can dilute the taste of our coffee. And so, the inverted method was born.
Let’s check out the inverted method!
For this recipe, we’re using a 1:16 coffee to water ratio; 16 grams of coffee (espresso grind, like loose sand) to 256 grams of water. Estimated brew time is between 1:30 to 2 minutes.
What you’ll need:
- 16 grams finely ground coffee
- Kettle + 256g water between 190°F (87°C) and 205°F (96°C)
- An AeroPress coffee maker
- A cup of coffee
- A timer (your phone works just as well)
- A digital scale
How to brew:
- Insert the plunger into the chamber to around Level 4.
- Flip the AeroPress and unscrew the cap; set it aside.
- Place AeroPress atop your digital scale and pour 16 grams of fine grind (espresso) coffee.
- Pour hot water until the scale marks 40 grams, stop pouring and stir the coffee for 10 seconds.
- Pour the rest of the previously measured water. Digital scale should mark 287 grams.
- Screw the filter cap back on and place a cup on it so it’s ready to start extracting coffee.
- Flip the AeroPress and the cup both at the same time (it’s actually easy, don’t worry too much about it) and start pressing the plunger down as soon as it’s flipped.
- Press down for 20~ 40 seconds until your coffee is fully extracted.
With this you will have made a cup of delicious, fragrant espresso. The only step left now is to drink it!
Tinkering with the inverted method
Although the main recipe for inverted method espresso coffee calls for rather standard measurements, with a 1:17 ratio and an espresso grind, there are countless ways to make coffee just by changing these two parameters. We’re going to present you with three examples for you to get inspired and try making some changes once you’ve got the standard recipe down.
First, we’re going to use a 1:12 ratio and a slightly coarser than usual grind– the type of grind you’d use for a Moka pot. This is especially good for darker roasts as it avoids extracting too rapidly, blocking out bitterness and getting as much of the sweetness as possible.
- 22 grams medium-fine grind coffee, dark roast
- 264 grams water
For this recipe, you might want to let the coffee bloom first before stirring, and since the grind is slightly coarser, it’s suggested you wait an additional 30 seconds before pressing down the plunger.
Estimated brew time: 2:30 minutes
This time let’s experiment with a similar coffee to water ratio; 1:13 and a much coarser grind, much like the type of grind you would use to make French press coffee. This is a favorite for light roasts, like blonde roasts and particularly recommended for single origin coffees.
- 15 grams coarse grind coffee, light to medium roast
- 195 grams water
Since this is coarse coffee, it’s going to take a little while for it to extract. Steeping time here is very important; Before pressing down on the plunger, let your coffee steep from one to three minutes. The longer you steep, the stronger your coffee will turn out with the risk of inviting bitter notes.
Estimated brew time: 4 minutes
Let’s go for the coarsest grind possible and a very close coffee-to-water ratio of 1:3, as well as a very short brew time. This recipe relies on unusual settings to bring out fruity and citric notes in your coffee and is best done with coffee that already offers such flavors. Dark roasts will not benefit from this recipe at all, so stick to light-to-medium roasts.
- 30 grams coffee, as coarse as reasonably possible
- 90 grams water at 205F
This recipe feels more like making tea in a French press, but the results are amazing. Use very hot water only and avoid blooming coffee. Instead, pour all the water at once and let it steep for maybe a minute, then press down. You will have a very different type of coffee, and you just might fall in love with it.
Estimated brew time: 1 minute
That’s enough for today. You are now more than ready to start brewing using the inverted method.
And remember: the sky’s the limit. A lot of the fun of brewing coffee arrives when you feel confident enough to start coming up with your own recipes. Remember to always have a scale and a thermometer close by so you can properly measure weight and temperature. But most importantly, have fun!