Last September during the national barista championships, South Africa saw the first ever national Aeropress championships (thank you to the lovely people of the Specialty Coffee Association of South Africa (SCASA) were so kind as to include us in their competition lineup).
To level the playing field, there was only one coffee option, the amazing washed Ethiopian Yirgacheffe Konga roasted by Gerald Charles (Union Hand-Roasted), who just so happened to place 5th in the 2012 World Roasting Championship. No one was disappointed, especially not the judges who loved each cup and interpretation of this amazing coffee.
Here were the final placings:
1st place: Ishan Natalie (TriBeCa)…2 time national barista champion (2009 and 2010).
2nd place: Wayne Oberholzer (Origin Coffee Roasting)…also a national barista champion (2012).
3rd place: Percy Chikwira (InFoods)
4th place: Simphiwe Adams
The winner and runner up were so kind as to share their secrets.
1st place, Ishan Natalie’s winning recipe:
“23 grams coffee
200 ml filtered water
Heat water to 81 degrees Celsius using a digital food thermometer (brew/ settled temperature of 77 degrees Celsius)
Medium grind – ground with hand grinder. It was a mission because it takes some time to hand grind but I prefer the ceramic conical burrs of the grinder for complexity in the cup
Rinse filter and glass tea pot
Add ground coffee to Aeropress using the inverted method
Pour 45ml water and allow to bloom for 35 seconds
20 seconds into bloom, tilt Aeropress to 45 degree angle and swirl a few times
Add remainder of water in circular slow motion getting the grounds to mix in
Allow to steep for 40 seconds, then stir for 10 seconds
Place cap and filter on and push down slowly to release any air, until liquid starts to seep through filter
Place glass teapot over cap and turn over
Allow to steep for a further 15 seconds Press down on Aeropress for 20 seconds until the rubber reached 1
Allow to steep for further 15 seconds
Press down to extract remainder of coffee
Swirl coffee in tea pot for remainder of the time remaining, serve in allocated glass
And there you go, a Jasmine Green Tea flavour!!!!”
2nd place, Wayne Oberholzer’s runner up recipe:
“21grams coffee – must be awesome coffee!
Water at 90-93 deg c. Depends on the region the coffee is from
Ground slightly finer than filter
Add ground coffee to the Aeropress. Fill to the top and allow to steep for 45secs.
After 45secs give a gentle stir for 15secs.
Allow to steep for another 30 secs. Pre wet your filter paper. Close it up and turn upside down.
Gently press down, aiming for a push down time of 30secs.
Total brew time – 2min.
Allow the coffee to settle and cool. I find an extra 2 -3 minutes allows the coffee to clean up in its taste profile and increase the acidity and sweetness. Rounding off the body and finish.
Please sir… Do enjoy!”