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You’ve heard often that the AeroPress is a great travel coffee maker to keep you caffeinated and satisfied on the go.
But then you learned of its sibling called AeroPress Go which is… also for traveling. So how are they different? Which one should you buy?
In this article, you’ll learn about both devices, AeroPress vs AeroPress Go, to make up your own mind about which one can better cater to your needs and is worth the purchase.
The line is slim but it’s definitely there.
What Is An AeroPress?
An AeroPress is a manual coffee maker invented by Alan Adler, who is also the founder of the company AeroPress.
What’s captivating about the AeroPress is that it’s shaped and works like a syringe.
The main chamber is a long cylindrical piece. At the bottom, a paper filter cap is attached.
It also has a plunger and an airtight silicone seal which will be inserted into the other end of the chamber, which makes AeroPress so similar to a syringe as long as we leave out the needle.
Other than the main components, the AeroPress also comes with a paper filter holder containing a year’s worth, a stirrer, a coffee grounds scoop, and a funnel to assist the brewing process.
So, what is the point of an AeroPress?
In under a minute, the AeroPress can produce delicious espresso-style coffee that’s highly concentrated and flavorful yet still clean and clear thanks to the filter.
It’s also cheap, easy to navigate, and most of all, light, compact, and portable, putting it among the top rankings of the best portable coffee makers.
How Does An AeroPress Work?
Here’s how the grind goes.
The coffee grounds are immersed in hot water inside the main chamber for a brief moment before the plunger is inserted.
The barista then presses the plunger to push the extracted coffee out the other end through the filter cap into the serving cup.
The plunger and pressing action are reminiscent of another coffee maker that also has the word “press” in its name. Come on. Say it with us! It’s the French Press!
However, the plunger of the French Press isn’t critical to the brewing process as its main function is to keep the used ground coffee at the bottom to leave the extracted batch of coffee on top.
If you want to learn more about the plunger showdown between AeroPress and French Press, the Coffee Geek’s got you covered!
Back to the AeroPress coffee game. Due to the silicone seal attached to the plunger of the AeroPress, there’s also pressure involved in the process of brewing such great-tasting coffee.
As you press the plunger down, air pressure is applied to the delicious coffee, making its body fuller and more concentrated.
This is pretty similar to the espresso maker which also relies on pressure to make the magic happen, which is why many coffee lovers refer to a cup of coffee made by AeroPress as “espresso-style”.
Brewing Coffee With The AeroPress
Next, let me walk you through how you can make the most out of the AeroPress, including what kind of coffee you should use, how the AeroPress accessories work, different AeroPress brewing methods, and a variety of AeroPress recipes.
Type & Roast
Luckily, for AeroPress, generally, any type of coffee beans and roast profiles should work. Think single-origin, blends, dark roast, light roast. Anything is within your reach.
You can make use of the coffee bags you’re currently using for other brewing methods like drip machine, espresso machine, Pour-Overs, and so on and test them on the AeroPress.
The versatility of coffee beans is definitely among the perks of getting yourself acquainted with the device.
But you do need to know what kind of coffee flavor you’re looking for to make the right pick that fits your personal preference.
If the realm of possibility overwhelms you and you don’t know where to start, check out my top list of the best coffee beans for AeroPress as well as top tips for picking coffee for this lovely device.
Due to the very short amount of immersion time, you need finely ground coffee to work with the AeroPress.
This level of fineness allows optimized coffee-to-water contact for flavor extraction, especially the more intense notes.
Finer coffee also means more pressure will be applied when you press down the plunger, resulting in a richer and fuller-bodied brew, though it does make the process harder to go through.
If you want your coffee less intense, opt for a coarser grind – medium-fine and medium-sized coffee, specifically.
Whatever you do, try to grind coffee beans right before brewing to get the freshest cups of Joe.
For more information, check my comprehensive Ultimate Coffee Grind Size chart.
Like most coffee-making methods, you need to use near-boil hot water to effectively extract the delicious bean juice.
The National Coffee Association [NCA] suggests the go-to water temperature should be within the range of 195 – 205 degrees Fahrenheit (91 – 96 degrees Celsius).
But the brand itself recommends that the water should only be around 175 degrees Fahrenheit (80 degrees Celsius).
And, thanks to the help of the grounds scoop and the marks on the chamber, you don’t really need to worry too much about the exact coffee-to-water ratio.
Some may find the extra tools not essential and useful to measure coffee, so they choose to rely on the traditional measurement tools like the scale instead.
To brew a great cup of espresso-style AeroPress, there are 2 routes you can take:
- Step 1: Place a filter into the cap and twist it onto the chamber. Place the whole piece on a sturdy cup or carafe.
- Step 2: Add one scoop of coffee and shake the chamber to level the grind. Add hot water to Level 1. Stir the mixture for 10 seconds.
- Step 3: Insert the plunger and press it down slowly. Pause when there’s resistance.
- Step 1: Insert the plunger into the chamber. Place the whole piece upside down.
- Step 2: Follow Traditional Method’s step 2.
- Step 3: Soak the filter with hot water, place it into the cap, and twist the cap into position.
- Step 4: Invert the whole device and place it on a sturdy cup or carafe. Press the plunger down slowly and pause when there’s resistance.
If you want to brew a couple of small cups of Cold Brew, replace hot water with cold water and stir the mixture for 1 minute instead of just 10 seconds, per the brand’s suggestion.
What Is An AeroPress Go?
So, aside from the original AeroPress, there’s also AeroPress Go, which is essentially a smaller version more optimized for traveling.
And the “Go” in its name is not the only difference between the two. The next section will be the real AeroPress vs AeroPress Go showdown that you’ve been waiting for.
What Has Really Changed In AeroPress Go?
One of the most obvious differences is in the size. As you can probably tell, for ease of portability and handling, the AeroPress Go should be designed to be smaller than the original AeroPress.
With the chamber and plunger together, here are their dimensions:
- Original AeroPress: 5.4 x 4.2 x 3.8 inches (14 x 11 x 10 cm)
- AeroPress Go: 4.6 x 3.6 x 3.6 inches (12 x 9 x 9 cm)
So the AeroPress Go is around an inch shorter and narrower.
AeroPress Go can handle up to 8 oz (237 ml) of coffee. On the other hand, the original AeroPress can make up to 10 oz (296 ml).
So the original AeroPress has a slightly larger capacity, which means the AeroPress Go can hold up comparably well.
But, due to its slightly larger size, the original AeroPress works a lot better with larger mugs, whereas it’s almost impossible for the AeroPress Go.
The smaller capacity on the Go version is definitely more suitable for serving only a single cup of coffee.
The silicone on the AeroPress Go is much softer and more durable than the old version, making the device easier to operate and last longer as well.
The AeroPress Go also comes with almost all of the same extra tools as the original version, including the stirrer, the filter holder, the scoop, and paper filters.
However, they’re constructed differently for better ease of portability.
For example, the original version doesn’t have a foldable stirrer which takes up less space. The scoop of the AeroPress Go can also carry the same capacity (14 g) as the old AeroPress despite the smaller size.
The AeroPress Go also comes with a much more compact filter holder which is only able to carry 20 filters, enough to accompany you on all your trips.
But, don’t worry. Both the AeroPress Go and the regular AeroPress version will still come with 350 filters as part of the package.
You can find other types of Aeropress filters here.
And one of the key differences between the two models is how they’re carried when traveling.
Since the AeroPress Go brewer is more optimized in portability, it also conveniently comes with a silicone lid and a travel mug.
The compact design allows the user to easily store the AeroPress Go inside the travel mug and secure the entire brewer with the lid. You can also drink out of the same one cup.
However, if you have some company, they will have to bring a second cup.
When it comes to the large AeroPress, the user can also conveniently carry it in a travel bag.
Though it’s a bit bulkier with the accessories and you need to bring your own cups, it’s still plenty easy to travel with.
They’re both affordable manual brewers ranging in the same price point with the OG AeroPress costing a couple more bucks than the AeroPress Go. Overall, not that much of a significant difference.
Wrapping Up Aeropress Vs Aeropress Go: Is AeroPress Go Worth it?
So, is the Aeropress Go an improvement to the original?
On certain aspects such as the size, plunger, and portability, yes.
If you travel a lot and prioritize convenience and portability for enjoying coffee on the go, the AeroPress Go is a neat choice, especially if you’re the only coffee drinker on the trip.
Otherwise, get the OG AeroPress which can work with more mug sizes and produce a higher amount of coffee for both at home and on the go.