Rinsing Aeropress Papers...big difference

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Rinsing Aeropress Papers...big difference

Postby espressomattic » Sun Feb 15, 2009 1:00 am

Can somebody please explain why I am getting a cleaner cup with an Aeropress when I thoroughly rinse the papers before hand. I use two papers normally. I found the resulting brew was crisper, cleaner, more flavourful etc.

I ran this experiment over a three week period and compared the results to unrinsed papers and found a marked difference.

Any ideas or am I just making it all up??!!??
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RE: Rinsing Aeropress Papers...big difference

Postby CakeBoy » Sun Feb 15, 2009 2:10 am

Interesting mate ..... there must be a reason. Maybe presinfusion of a basic sort or even a cleansing of residue on the papers? I'm sure someone will have more of a clue than I can offer. Experiments do sound in order though :D
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RE: Rinsing Aeropress Papers...big difference

Postby zix » Sun Feb 15, 2009 8:58 am

It sounds logical that it should work in the aeropress too, since it has been done in manual drip-brew methods. Interesting - I have only tried it once, more or less out of accident, and didn't notice any difference. But I never use double filters.
The filter papers for the aeropress are supposed to be very good, but sure, there could be some residue of something that is rinsed out.
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RE: Rinsing Aeropress Papers...big difference

Postby Tristan » Sun Feb 15, 2009 11:50 am

Perhaps they swell slightly after rinsing and the filtering property of the paper is improved? When the paper isn't moistened the initial contact with brewed coffee is too late (and subject to too much pressure) for the swelling to occur?
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RE: Rinsing Aeropress Papers...big difference

Postby Jaanus » Mon Feb 16, 2009 7:14 am

I was thinking exactly along the same lines as Tristan. It sounds reasonable.
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RE: Rinsing Aeropress Papers...big difference

Postby bruceb » Mon Feb 16, 2009 7:26 am

I hope others will verify these results. I will be trying to do so in the next weeks. My first tests yesterday using a freshly roasted Sidamo didn't convince me that there was any difference at all, but that was just two cups of each and my taste probably isn't anywhere near as highly developed as others' here.

I used to premoisten Melita filters for pour-over, but after awhile stopped because I couldn't really detect any difference.
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RE: Rinsing Aeropress Papers...big difference

Postby zix » Mon Feb 16, 2009 7:16 pm

Hmmm.. thinking about this, I remember I was told to moisten the filter papers before using them when filtering chemicals. I was making cyanotype solutions in a lab.
It seems like the filter papers were simply designed to be wet, and their filtering ability was probably measured when wet.

Sounds very probable that the aeropress paper filters, which to me look very much like those chemical paper filters, are just the same. Maybe you could even stop using using double filters if you start using them only when wet.

The swelling process of a common copier paper is rather fast, but maybe with a filter paper it needs to be a bit slower. Probably would be good to allow the aeropress paper to expand for a minute or so after rinsing it.

The upside down brewing method ought to suit you very well if you want to press through a damp filter. Just be careful when you screw the filter holder + filter on, so you don't rip the paper. But I guess you already knew that.
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Re: Rinsing Aeropress Papers...big difference

Postby AlanAdler » Wed Feb 18, 2009 1:17 am

espressomattic wrote:Can somebody please explain why I am getting a cleaner cup with an Aeropress when I thoroughly rinse the papers before hand. I use two papers normally. I found the resulting brew was crisper, cleaner, more flavourful etc.

I ran this experiment over a three week period and compared the results to unrinsed papers and found a marked difference.

Any ideas or am I just making it all up??!!??


Hi espressomattic,

With a dry filter, a few tiny particles pass through through the gaps between fibers. When the filter is wet, the particles mostly stick to the wet fibers.

I like to wet the filter (after insertion into the AeroPress) when I grind right into my AeroPress. Otherwise some fine particles from the grinder shoot right through into the cup - even before water is added.

Best,

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Postby espressomattic » Wed Feb 18, 2009 1:49 am

Thanks guys, appreciate all the replies :)

I repeated the experiment here at home as I was away camping. I thought the Bore Water which was Filtered x 3 and UV treated may have been a factor ;) Anyway, yes I did get a cleaner cup and there was noticably less bitterness in the cup.

So the rinsing expands the papers - which then helps with the filtration...cool..

Cheers

Matt
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Postby bruceb » Wed Feb 18, 2009 10:44 am

Rinsing paper filters before use is standard laboratory procedure, but for a different reason. Dry filters tend to capture certain soluble chemical compounds that should not be filtered out. The other effect, called dry channeling is rarely a problem because the amounts of insoluble material that pass through the paper are barely measurable.

I repeated Mitty's experiment this morning and again I cannot see or taste a difference. Both cups were very clean and clear, certainly cleaner and clearer than I normally get using the gold filter. I'm now beginning to think that the reason may be the grind. I grind somewhat coarser for the Aeropress than what others seem to be describing. Perhaps there are just a lot less fines that pass through the filter because of the coarser grind. I hope someone else will verify these results. I will also try grinding finer, but in the past I didn't like the taste as well when I ground too fine.
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Postby Richard » Thu Feb 26, 2009 9:42 am

Only just spotted this thread and had thought this issue had been sorted, interesting reading.

My tests over months proved to me that the filter papers were far to efficient and so I fitted Swiss-Gold filters, I use 2, one on top of another. Even-then, the inverted method improved flavour but from what I'm reading the suggestion is that the inverted method means I didn't need the Swiss-Gold filters.

My tests were conducted using coffee from a press-pot-V-coffee from the Aeropress, the Aeropress just cleans the coffee so clean I think it removed the oils. Certainly the paper filters removed something I liked to taste.
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Postby zix » Thu Feb 26, 2009 5:05 pm

I also appreciate the oils - it is the fines I don't like.
Richard, which Swiss Gold filter did you massacre to make an aeropress filter? One of the cone filters, or something else? Maybe I am a sissy, but I felt I didn't want to maim a nice drip filter cone - perhaps you found flat ones?
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Postby bruceb » Thu Feb 26, 2009 6:10 pm

I can't answer for Richard, but a certain football hero from Stafford and I split a drip filter cone to make two filters for the aeropresses. I've never gone back to paper since, except to try Breako's... ermmmmmmm .... Expressomatic's variant above.

I definitely prefer the gold-filtered to paper filtered coffee. The oils aren't good for my tummy, but they're great for my taste buds. Image
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Postby Richard » Thu Feb 26, 2009 6:43 pm

zix wrote:Richard, which Swiss Gold filter did you massacre to make an aeropress filter? One of the cone filters,


Yes, it was a cone filter and yes I felt like a murderer cutting it up but the results were good after getting 2 filters for my Aeropress.

When I bought the Swiss-Gold cone filter I bought 2 because I also wanted to compare the results against a paper cone filter.

No contest.

I'm not keen on sludge but if it brings a flavour I appreciate then its acceptable, a double Swiss-Gold doesn't pass much sludge but it does pass flavour that that the paper filters seem to trap.
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Postby zix » Thu Feb 26, 2009 9:28 pm

a certain football hero from Stafford and I

He didn't bend it like Beckham, I hope? Not good for any gold filter, that.

...ahhh Yes I know, bend it up my... sorry, I'll be off then...
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