This is my favorite espresso maker. The Aerobie is entirely manual, but turns out to be a lot less work than the "automatic" espresso makers I have used before. It makes much better espresso than the inexpensive ($50-$150) pressure or pump espresso makers I have tried.
To make espresso you boil water in a kettle, place a filter and your ground espresso in the Aerobie, add the water, stir, and wait a moment for it to steep, then press the plunger to pull your shot.
I make steamed milk using a Bodum Chambord milk frother. I microwave the milk for 30 seconds and use the milk frother. Combined with the Aerobie this makes an excellent Latte.
You can find more information about the Aerobie at http://www.aerobie.com/. Yes, it's made by the same people who make those flying discs!
You can more information about the Bodum milk frother at http://www.bodum.com/.
You can buy the Aerobie from online retailers including the Flowery Trail coffee house http://www.flowerytrail.com/.
By Fletcher from Manchester, WA
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We have two stovetop espresso makers (cafetterias) italian style, 3 shot and 6 shot. If you go to a Latin or Italian area (like Miami or New York), you can get them very cheap. Cooks right on the stove, similar to a percalator. My DH used to be a barista at an espresso stand, and we have used the machines, but to him, that is REAL cafe con leche!
Sounds a little like www.toddycafe.com
except that this makes an instant single serving as opposed to a low acid pitcherful of coffee over many hours of cold water brewing.
In both cases, the filters make all the difference. I've been a happy Toddycafe coffeemaker user for years. But one either buys the concentrate or makes up a batch.
The Aerobie is different from a french press, but is a similar principle.
A french press is a method of brewing coffee. The grounds are placed into the french press, allowed to steep, and then the grounds are filtered out using the press.
The Aerobie is used to make espresso shots. The grounds and water are placed in the Aerobie and then the water is forced through the grounds under pressure. It is this pressure which distinguishes espresso from drip coffee.
I like the Aerobie because it has the simplicity of a french press, but allows me to make espresso shots so I can make lattes or americanos at home.
The milk frother is also similar to a french press. It has a plunger which is moved up and down through hot milk quickly. The result is nicely foamed milk.
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