Awhile back I did a personal review on the AeroPress. From my very first brew I was impressed with the coffee. Sure, it could have been the placebo effect at work (I had very high expectations based on Amazon reviews and elite coffee shop sitings), but I didn't care, because the coffee continued to taste great to me.
But then I splurged again, this time with another very popular manual brewing device that I'm sure you've seen before: the Hario V60.
It's glass, with a nice little black handle and bottom (plastic). Definitely prettier than my big old plastic one. A satisfying upgrade aesthetically.
But how does it stack up against the other brewing methods in terms of taste? Well, I decided to sit out of this one due to my biases, and I brewed two cups of coffee for a couple of my loved ones (girlfriend and sister) to blindly taste. One cup was brewed with the Aeropress, the other with the Hario V60.
I started with two mugs that were exactly the same just so nobody would accidentally see me brewing with one method on a completely unique mug. Obviously this doesn't affect taste, so here are the variables that most definitely did:
- Water temperature: 204˚F on my Bonavita Variable Temp Kettle
- Grind: finest setting on my Capresso Infinity Burr Grinder
- Dose: 20 grams using my EatSmart Kitchen Gram Scale
- Coffee Beans: Ethiopian Fancy from Peet's (medium roast)
- Water used: Eek! I didn't measure this, and definitely should have. However, both mugs were basically filled with the same amount of liquid coffee in the end.
I was expecting both of my participants to like the Aeropress better, but as it turned out, they liked the Hario cup of Joe much better. My girlfriend actually said the AeroPress cup tasted like gasoline. Ouch.
So does this mean the Hario is better? No way, man! This was a pretty unscientific experiment to put it mildly. Here's how I think I could make it better.
The Aeropress was clearly a disaster. Maybe I ground the beans too finely? Or maybe the water temperature was too high? I think the former, which is why next time I'm going to try a coarser grind to see if the Aeropress can come close to competing with the Hario (same variables above).
Or maybe the two brewing methods are so different, they don't even belong in a test together to begin with? I'm still not 100% convinced. Which is why I think it might be a good idea to first find the Aeropress‘ sweet spot, then the Hario's, and blind taste test once again with a bigger sample size. 2 People is so statistically insignificant, it's not even funny.
Even though the experiment was poorly controlled, I agreed with both of my participants: the Hario cup was better. Less bitterness, fruitier, and of course, gasoline free. Like I said earlier though, I'm not convinced that this is the better manual brewing method just yet. More experiments to follow. Who knows, this may be the beginning of series of posts to document my testing between these two excellent coffee makers.
If you are considering either of these two coffee makers, check out the links below! I will get a small commission for any purchases you make via Amazon, so if you found any of these reviews helpful I'd really appreciate the credit. If not, I really appreciate you taking the time to read!
To read my review of the AeroPress, click here.
To buy the Hario V60 on Amazon, click here.