DISK Review

January 20, 2011

I’ve been experimenting quite a bit this past couple weeks with Coava’s KONE, no sooner did I get back home to the states to get my hands and start the process of brewing with new equipment, than they released the DISK filter for the Aeropress, and no sooner than was I about to do a write up on both of these than they released another DISK with slightly smaller holes! (Not to mention the KONE funnel coming out in the next couple weeks)

Slow down with all the innovation!

Well, regardless, I’m getting around to reviewing the product now, and I’ve been more impressed with the DISK as a consistent brewing device. The Kone has gotten me to brew a different kind of coffee (read: oily, big bodied, slight soot) by tricking me with one of my favorite brewing devices, the Chemex (read: clean, crisp, bright brews). However, I didn’t own an Aeropress before I was given the DISK + Aeropress combo for Christmas, and so naturally i’ve been drawn to brewing with it often.

Here’s my brewing specs for the DISK: 12-14g depending on the roaster, Inverted Aeropress, 200ml water poured in 10seconds, snap lid on and flip over the sink at 60 seconds (some coffee falls out into the sink that mostly contains fines and soot), set on cup, at 120-150s remove plunger and let the coffee drip through, depending on grind size it should finish up around 180-210seconds. I grind around 22 on the Virtuoso Preciso for a starting point, This gives a really balanced cup that highlights the aromatics and sweetness with very little soot. I’ve not had any good results actually using the plunger to push the brew through the filter, every time it ends up horribly sooty with a terrible astringency.

The best part about this filter (and brewer) is the easy clean up, while the KONE takes a little bit longer to clean, the DISK is no hassle at all to rinse and get rid of the coffee grounds and oils. As well, at a lower price point of $15 for one, $25 for a set of two different sized filters, it’s a more affordable luxury.

All in all, I can’t recommend Coava’s products enough. Though many don’t have the means to purchase, they are at least helpful to get one thinking about brewing in a different way, and moving the coffee industry further past the need of paper filters.

Watch here tomorrow, I’ll be posting some thoughts about a brewing experiment i’ve been working on with the DISK…

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Kone Review

January 19, 2011

Coava Coffee generously sent me a Kone to review back in November, but because I was overseas as well as holidays, moving and starting another semester I am just now getting around to reviewing the product.

I’ve been doing a modified, but fairly basic, pour-over method with the Kone in the Chemex. 25-28g (higher than my normal 24g), 100ml bloom poured in the center over a 45 second period, left to rest for 15 seconds, then a slow pour right down the middle of the remaining 300ml in 90 seconds, then a drain for 30 seconds, which allows for a 3 minute overall brew time. This is all done with a grind coarser than espresso, yet finer than one would normally do for drip.

I have seen some overly sooty brews others have made (online and in person) as well that I have made, and almost always the issue is a method too close to a normal Chemex. If you take the Kone to a sink and pour water through it you will see very easily that there is a radically small amount of resistance in redirecting water through the brewing bed, and that water exits the sides, not the bottom of the filter. This means that pouring only in center actually is the best way to redirect the water through the bed, whereas in normal Chemex or V60 brewing bed architecture, the coffee is mostly flowing out of the bottom inch or so of the filter, meaning you want to incorporate the sides of the bed thoroughly as the water drains through the center bottom.

As well, because of this lack of resistance, I have found that coarse normal chemex grinds only work when you are aiming to overdose the coffee and have a weak, sooty, and underextracted brew. The finer than is common sense grind necessary is just that, necessary. For some sort of reference point, I’m currently using Macro setting 9 on my Baratza Preciso, with the micro dial set halfway to the right.

My only real complaints with the product are the flimsiness of the filter, It has already taken a bit of a beating from being used by some barista’s at the shop. While I doubt these dents substantially effect the brewing bed, it is a bit disappointing from a product that is higher in price point than around 750 regular paper chemex filters.

The Kone is another great tool to add to my arsenal, and although I do reach for it often, i’m more impressed with the DISK filter for the aeropress as far as the tastiness of cups i’ve been getting, which I will post a review of in the coming days..

p.s. I didn’t get to experience the great packaging that everyone else did because my brother was overly anxious to play with it..