Monday, August 16, 2010

Coffee on the go

These days, I find I'm willing to make the effort to tilt the scales of my days toward excellence rather than mediocrity. Settling for settling is just not as acceptable as it once was.

I'm also, however, a big fan of convenience. And I've discovered that excellence and convenience don't often walk together down the same street at the same time. Which is where the fun starts — finding those secrets that transform ho-hum into wow, easily.

There's a big difference between ho-hum coffee (mediocre coffee you would drink) and wow coffee (excellent coffee you want to drink). The gap between excellent coffee and extraordinary coffee is not nearly as wide.

I can make my own self a cup of excellent coffee easily enough in my kitchen. One Mr. Bialetti, one bag Zabar's coffee (don't turn your nose up, it might not be a micro-roaster, but it's mighty fine), 7 minutes on the stove, and presto, my perfect morning joe. But what to do when not in my own kitchen?

Answer: Aeropress. From the company famous for its eponymous flying toy (the better frisbee) comes a portable coffee maker that produces a strong, clean brew. A cross between a drip filter (Melitta) and a French Press, the Aerobie seems to take the best and leave the rest. Unlike the drip filter, you pour all the water into the Aeropress and then you're done — no standing over the filter and steadily streaming in the hot water. And unlike the french press method, the Aeropress uses paper filters (small round discs), so the coffee is incredibly particle free and smooth.

And it's small. Perfect to stick in your suitcase. Carry one of these around and all you need is hot water and ground coffee. Ho-hum to wow with one small and BPA-free plastic plunger. Nice.

No comments: