We were fortunate enough to catch up with Bart Kerswell and Ben Collier, the founders of the mobile BrewBar (based in Coventry, UK) and inventors of the hands free and gas powered AeroPress machine, who proved that an AeroPress can be commercial.
SEE ALSO: Barista AeroPress Recipe Encyclopaedia
Bart and Ben united their passions of coffee and travel into a mobile “BrewBar”, which enabled them to serve crafted, hand-roasted specialty coffee, at events across the UK. Their brew-methods included Syphon, V60, AeroPress and espresso-based drinks, but each brew method is tailored to their audience.
For music festivals, AeroPress was the ideal choice for the hype-fuelled setting and fun-loving customers. It’s fun, alternative and produces high-quality coffee. However, festival-goers demanded 4 AeroPress’ coffees every 90 seconds, so, they took the matter into (or out of) their own hands.
The BrewBar team in their portable custom-made festival dome. This is the first-model of the machine (with a manual pull-lever connected to a series of cogs).
Here’s what they have to say about their experiences with their invention.
They Offer Two Drinks
A BlueBottle-esque minimalism. A single blend. Long or short black coffee (with or without a splash of milk).
A Simple Machine
Adjustable pressure setting – The machine’s pressure set prior to each event according to the blend.
Press time – Each press takes between 10–30 seconds (depending on the coffee & pressure setting).
Handmade – Birch Plywood and it doesn’t wear at all (a bit of Danish oil and some care and it will last for years).
The Innovation Has a Number of Expected (and Unexpected) Pluses:
Social – staff have an extra “hands-free” minute to chat to each customer (and more energy to do so).
Brew consistency – at festivals the staff found themselves rushing AeroPresses due to high demand, resulting in under-extracted/under-brewed coffee. The brew-station guarantees a set pressure (similar to bar 9 on an espresso machine) so each cup tastes exactly the same.
Visually alluring – it’s theatrical, it’s Willy Wonka and, in the melee of a music fest, it grabs the customers eye.
Education – it invites others to learn about coffee. Why? The barista doesn’t have to lean over the counter, blocking the customers view during the AeroPress extraction. The customer can actually observe how their coffee is brewed & extracted.
User-friendly – this makes the AeroPress even simpler. Staff just learn a simple recipe and push a button.
AeroPress Tips from the Inventors
Brew time? Shorter is preferable to longer.
Espresso? Yes. Bart claimed that in a blind taste they couldn’t taste the difference between an AeroPress and a commercial espresso machine (minus the crema).
P.S If you’re going to the Secret Garden Party in Cambridge on the 24-27th July, look out for the big red van in the main food area.
Perfect Daily Grind.