It’s not enough that the talent-heavy crew at Standart Magazine are putting out the printed jams that have all of CoffeeWorld talking, but they’re also putting out some choice video. Here’s the day that saw Lukas ‘The Fury’ Zarhadnik crowned Slovak AeroPress Champion of 2015. The rest, as they say, is history.
This is just a friendly little reminder to get your hosting application in to us before the 31st October! Hosting applications can be made here and we’ve already had some excellent ones, so thank you to those of you who have put the time into the application. To be clear, it doesn’t take that long and the finer details can be worked out down the track.
The results of who gets to host will be announced in mid-November and the 2016 World AeroPress Championship season kicks off on January 1st. More information here.
Ensuring your national Aeropress competition runs smoothy and successfully means fulfilling the global guidelines. It’s important that you’re able to stamp your own personality on the competition by putting on the kind of event that suits your community, however it is equally important that there’s a level of uniformity to the national competitions, and that global requirements are met.
Until then, here’s some of the key responsibilities of national organisers:
1. Make It Fast, Fun & Light-Hearted
The whole point of this event is that it’s fun to compete in, to host and most importantly, to watch. Get some sponsors together, get an MC with a big personality, hire a DJ, give street food vendors some space to set up and get a few kegs of beer in to give away. Make it a party, make sure everyone has a good time. (And while all this is happening, run the competition itself.)
2. Make It Fair
The hosting of a national event should be looked at as an opportunity to help bring a coffee loving community together. It’s not an opportunity to promote your company over your competitors. To this extent, national hosts must be prepared to be inclusive, engaging and fair. Hosts putting on events solely to serve themselves will probably not host again.
3. Design A Poster
National organisers must commission and produce a poster for their event and where required, include the official World AeroPress Championship and global sponsors logos. A high definition digital version must be submitted to H.Q., alongside rights for publication, distribution and use.
4. Event Reporting
You’re our eyes and ears around the globe. A thorough report of the event needs to be completed and sent back. This should include a review of the events itself, the top 3 competitors’ recipes and the names and workplaces of all competitors must be submitted. A collection of photography (and video if possible) is crucial to good reporting, so organise a decent photographer!
5. Pony Up For Travel
National hosts must ensure that an appropriate amount of funding is provided for the winner to get to the World AeroPress Championship event. Travel should be by air where required, and hotels should be of a decent standard.
6. Meeting Global Partner Requirements
Where stipulated, national hosts must work in conjunction with arrangements we have agreed with global partners. This may include the use of particular equipment, cups, water, coffee or media reporting. Or it may not. Either way, details will be communicated in good time.
Please Note: All applications to host a national AeroPress competition must be submitted to and approved by World AeroPress Championship HQ. Hosting one year does not give you automatic permission to host again. If we don’t approve it, it’s not a sanctioned competition, and your winner will not be competing in the World Championship event.
The incredibly influential and supportive legends at SPRUDGE celebrated 6 years of frothy gossip yesterday. They’ve been great friends of the World AeroPress Championships from day 1, and we’re pumped for more love, support and collaboration with them in 2016.
Part of the celebrations, was for Liz, Jordan and Zach to pick their 6 favourite articles from the past 6 years, and Liz selected an article from May, 2014 : “A Good, Single Serve Coffee For Myself” — Our Interview With AeroPress Inventor Alan Adler
I’ve copied and pasted it here, for your viewing pleasure. Happy Birthday SPRUDGE!
Engineer Alan Adler founded Aerobie in 1984 to produce the world-record holding Aerobie Pro Ring, and has since invented no fewer than 26 additional products. In 2006, Aerobie took a deviation from sporting goods to produce a coffee maker: the AeroPress. This plastic device is basically an oversized, blunt syringe with a coffee filter attached, but its versatility and unique extraction profile has turned the brewer into an unlikely smash-hit amongst coffee obsessives of all stripes.
Last year, and for the first time, the AeroPress accounted for more than half of Aerobie’s total sales. Meanwhile the competitive AeroPress circuit, which started as somewhat of a lark, has matured into an engaging, freewheeling network of competitions across the globe. Don’t believe us? Look at this catalogue of amazing national competition posters, from Singapore to London, Scotland to the Philippines.
The world of competitive AeroPressing is an unlikely global coffee phenomenon, so much so that Alan Adler, founder of Aerobie and designer of the AeroPress, was on hand at Stumptown Coffee Roasters to observe the madness for himself at the US AeroPress Championships in Seattle a few weeks ago. Mr. Adler sat with Sprudge for an interview, during which we asked him about the roots of his invention, the culture of Aerobie, the wild turns the product has taken in consumer hands, and unexpectedly, his work as a flautist.
Let’s start at the beginning. How did Aerobie get started?
I was an electronics engineer most of my life. I had a hobby with sailing and sailboat design and that motivated me to study aerodynamics. When I started the company I had already been designing flying rings, flying discs, and boomerangs, and licensing my designs to other companies. I had been doing that for six or seven years. The Aerobie Pro Ring was the best flying toy I had ever designed and my wife suggest we start a company and that’s what we did.
Have you always been a coffee drinker?
How would you make coffee before the AeroPress?
We had a variety of ways. We had an old pod machine that used the old paper pods. We had an automated drip machine. We had a Chemex. And it was from a little tiny instruction sheet that was packed with the Chemex that I first learned about the benefit of lower temperature. That little instruction sheet said coffee tasted better if you brewed it at lower temperature.
Is that was sparked you desire to make your own device?
It began with a desire to make a good, single serve coffee for myself.
I had a conversation with the wife of our sales manager and we were commiserating about how an automated drip machine worked pretty well for a batch of coffee but fell flat when you tried to make a single serving. I started experimenting with pour-overs. I experimented with temperature and I found I liked 175 degree water.
I was frustrated by the fact that the wet time was four to five minutes with a pour-over and I tried to start pushing on the slurry with the back of a soup spoon–and that had no effect whatsoever. So I realized I need a closed chamber that I could pressurize. I had my own shop–so I designed and made something in my own shop in a day that wasn’t too terribly different than the AeroPress today. It just worked amazingly well. I was just absolutely blown away by how sweet the coffee tasted–it wasn’t bitter!
So I made a number of them and at some point I brewed a cup of coffee for our general manager at Aerobie. I still remember his exact words, he said, “Alan, I can sell a ton of these.” (laughs) So we decided to make it a product. I spent nearly a year perfecting the design, experimenting with different variations.
Can you tell us about those variations?
Some of the variations were really a waste a time because I didn’t know how to use my own invention. By that I mean I thought you could push down on the AeroPress and within a few seconds “woosh!” you would have a cup of coffee. I didn’t appreciate that you had to wait to let it flow through slowly.
So I was experimenting with ideas to create much higher pressure–I even had a few designs that were pressurized with a bicycle pump, believe it or not. In the end I chose what we have today, because it’s also self-cleaning. It took nearly a year to get production moulds fully debugged and working well. They were finished and ready for the Fall Seattle CoffeeFest in 2005, right here in these very halls.
Did you ever think that the AeroPress would spawn the World AeroPress Championship?
Not in my wildest fantasy dreams did I ever consider that. The funny thing is that we’ve encouraged competition with our flying toys. We’ve put on competitions for the longest throws. But the idea of competing with something to make what you drink every morning never occurred to me.
That idea came from Tim Varney and Tim Wendelboe. Tim Wendelboe held a World AeroPress Championship at his cafe. When I reflect on it now, the AeroPress really is a perfect thing for a competition because it’s so flexible. It encourages innovation. You couldn’t really have that with an ordinary espresso machine because it’s pretty set with how it works–but the AeroPress, there’s just an unlimited amount of ways you can use it.
Being a inventor myself with some forty patents I’m mindful of the fact that there are people that love to innovate–and those are the folks that come to the championships, for the most part. Although the winner this year at the US AeroPress Championship, Jeremy Moore, he had a pretty straightforward way of doing it. If you look at his recipe on Sprudge, it wasn’t terribly different from what we tell people to do.
At times, it’s been wildly different. Andy Sprenger’s win in Boston last year was really odd. Bizarre, but it won, it must’ve tasted really good!
What coffee do you like to drink at home?
I mostly like high-grown Guatemalan. The most important thing about coffee to me is the degree of roast. I like full-city or sort of medium roast. I say that I like my beans to look like a milk chocolate Hershey bar.
Do you still use the recipe on the box?
Yes. The whole motivation for making the AeroPress is a short wet time. I think a short wet time gives a sweeter cup. I think the temperature with 175 was not my invention–we tested a lot of temperatures on a lot of testers and they all preferred 175.
How many AeroPresses does Aerobie make a year?
About a half a million. And they’re all made in California.
Is the demand for AeroPress growing?
Yes, it’s our fastest growing product. It grows by about forty percent a year.
Are AeroPresses surpassing the demand of the flying discs?
Last year, for the first year, it crept past the sales of everything else combined. Our second best seller is our very first product, the Pro Ring. It’s still a favorite of mine, too. I still play with it, I still go outside and throw it around with friends.
Yes! I believe Sightglass Coffee sells it alongside the AeroPress.
Sightglass, pardon me! I didn’t know that.
Any new AeroPress products in the future?
Well, off and on, a few people have asked about a larger AeroPress and I’ve conducted experiments on a larger one but I haven’t found a design that I really love. Most of the occasions I experience when making coffee, the amount of coffee I make is covered by the existing AeroPress–it can make up to four servings in one pressing. It’s extremely rare–maybe once or twice a year, that I want to make more of that. So I don’t feel any sense of urgency to make a bigger one but it could happen–I’m just not sure.
Any other coffee products you’re tinkering with?
There are things that we think about from time to time but none of them have appealed to us strongly enough to make that move into a product. A lot of other companies feel like they must come out with products every year and we tend to wait until we just really love something before we bring it out. So every product that we’ve ever brought out in the thirty years we’ve been around is still in our line-up. We’ve never dropped a product.
Author and Coffee Ratings founder Kenneth Davids famously wrote a glowing testimonialfor the AeroPress. How did you get connected with Ken Davids early on?
I had all of his books and I knew he was a Bay Area person and I just called him up. I tested the earliest prototypes on him and his encouragement was one of things that helped us go through with it and invest in it.
Can you tell us more about your interest in flutes?
Well that’s just a hobby.
When did you start playing the flute?
I first got interested in it thirty years ago. Then I abandoned it for many, many years. About six years ago I started again.
What type of flute do you play?
I like end-blown flutes which are a cousin of the Japanese Shakuhachi. I’ve come up with my own mouthpiece design which works well for me.
If you Google Image Search my name Alan Adler and “flutes” there’s a few pictures out there on cyberspace of my flutes.
You record some of your music?
Yes. I like to improvise. At first I was trying to transcribe the things I invented with pencil and paper and then I discovered the lazy way is just to record them. When I want to play the same piece again I just listen to the recording and can easily play off of that.
Would you mind sharing your recordings with our audience on Sprudge?
I guess not, I can do that. But please be sure to tell them I’m a total amateur.
Thank you so much for the time, Alan.
Lock up your leprechauns and dust off your shamrocks. Practice your patronising accent and get ready to trot out those well-worn stereotypes… The World AeroPress Championship is coming to Ireland!
On the evening of Thursday June 23rd, 2016 the only coffee competition that actually matters will be descending on Dublin, Ireland where a field of around thirty-five national champions will compete to take home the World AeroPress Championship’s metaphorical pot of gold.
In 2016, we’re going to build on this success of 2015 by providing even more support and exposure for national events. We had such a cracking 2015 season and we worked with some truly inspiring and dedicated coffee professionals who hosted, organised and brought the AeroPress Championship to their respective local markets.
So, do you think you have what it takes to host a national or regional AeroPress championship?
If so, anyone interested in hosting a national championship should complete an application here before October 31st, 2015 — we’ll be finalising and announcing the competition schedule in mid-November. The national championship season window is open from January 1st until May 31st giving winners a clear three weeks preparation time for the World Championship event in late June.
There are lots more details, exciting announcements and Irish jokes to come to be sure. Stay tuned, the 2016 plunge towards glory begins here.
— Tim & Tim
David Friedman at Likely Media has shot and produced this excellent portrait of the unsung hero to coffee lovers everywhere and the inventor of AeroPress, Alan Adler. Many of you will remember Alan taking the mic and keeping us entertained during a partial power outage during the 2015 World AeroPress Championship in Seattle. We were very fortunate to have him there.
So dim the lights and microwave yourself a very small bag of pop corn for this six and a half minute snapshot into the mind and methods of Alan Adler.
Demonstrated in a sexy new video, Lukas Zahradnik , the 2015 World AeroPress Champion, presents his winning recipe. Here is a summary of his method:
Specs : 20g coffee / 230g water @ 79c / Ground @ 7,3 on EK43 / 1:30 total brew time
Method : Bloom 15 sec with 60g water at 79c / Turbulent wiggle for 15 seconds / Pour the rest of the water (230g total) for 10 seconds / Press / Stop pressing under 1 on AeroPress chamber / 1:30 total brew time / 230g water total / Serve & Enjoy
A number of weeks have passed since the highly successful 2015 WACs in Seattle, and time has been spent reflecting on the 2015 World AeroPress Championship circuit. Our attention is now on the national competitions for the 2016 season.
There was such an incredible response from the 35 nations who hosted regional and national competitions across the globe. We had some new countries come on board; it was Mexico’s first go at running a competition and by all reports, they did a cracking job. New Zealand put together an incredibly professional event in a small coastal town with competitors flying/driving in from other major cities. Poland hosted an unbelievable 72 competitors and in Australia and the UK multiple regional competitions were held.
All the events delivered great returns for hosts, sponsors and supporters with many national organisers hosting their 2nd or 3rd competition. There is real value for them, and with increasing attention from mainstream and social media, the value of hosting and supporting in only increasing. The atmosphere of the competitions meant spectators had fun watching and cheering along, and the inclusive, accessible format of the competition meant competitors had fun and were rewarded with flights across the globe for getting involved.
For the 2016 season we are looking into a few rule changes, and there will be more on that in the coming weeks, so stay tuned.
In the meantime, start thinking about hosting your own regional or national competition. There is now a fairly light vetting process to ensure the right people are hosting the competition and that the essence of the event is held in tact. Register your interest in hosting a competition via this page – and if there are any people/companies/philanthropists wishing to get involved, don’t hesitate to contact us at WAC headquarters.
Well, there we have it. By far the most successful World Aeropress Championship to date. 35 nations competing head-to-head for the chance to take home the ‘bronze piston’. According to the clicker at the door we had over 400 people come to enjoy the jamboree of competition and disco music. The atmosphere was electric during the competition; the level of ability impressive. We’ve had amazing support from a truly generous bunch of individuals and companies. Without them, there is no way we’d have been able to put on such a spectacle for people.
Firstly, CafeImports. So big-hearted, so wonderful to work with. They sourced us an incredible coffee from Costa Rica, roasted it and shipped it all over over the World to all 35 competitors. We also had the cupping talents of Noah Namowicz & Meister as part of the notable judging panel. So much love from them.
Boni-avita, at least that’s what they could be called. Marcus Boni of Bonavita lavishly gave the competitors the tools to perform on the night and kettles and scales to take home for the top 3 place getters. Another dream to work with.
Intelligentsia came to the party too making sure all the required elements for a great party were there : beer and awesome limited edition Aerobie flying rings. Stephen Morrissey himself was there to judges through some rounds and projected his own jolly vibes onto the room.
La Marzocco, a long time supporter of the WACs, once again came to reinforce the event with an amazing price pack for the winner and lots of love from Italy.
Baratza, practically a member of the sponsorship family now, donated a Forte, Vario W and Preciso grinders for the winners. Year after year, they’ve been there for us.
Those guys at Sprudge, our official media partners, propping us up with extra coverage of the National AeroPress competitions and making sure the World Championships were in the limelight.
Those 2 beautiful ladies on top of the back bar, were a couple of Mahlkönig EK43s, so thanks to Gary at Mahlkönig for hand delivering them to the event.
We had some competition grade water from Everpure USA for the competitors, of which practically every last drop was used to ensure their coffee tasted and extracted beautifully.
And what goes without saying, the lovely people at Aerobie, incredibly supportive, incredibly generous and true lovers of the World AeroPress Championships. Stay tuned for more reports, recipes and more photos!
This amazingly ‘Wheel of Fortune’ style spinning wheel will give you the chance to judge a round at the 2015 World AeroPress Championships if you land on ‘Lucky You’. A randomly selected spectator will have a ‘Price is Right; Come on down!’ moment to join the MCs on stage to spin the wheel 3 times to select the 3 judges for each round. If you land on ‘Coffee Time’, you’ll get a very special swag of WAC goodies!
Spinning the wheel isn’t your only chance to pick up the official WAC merchandise, thankfully. Manning the Merch Desk will be David Salinas of Department of Brewology, who created the exhaustively laboured over and staggeringly awesome artwork of the WAC poster. We’ll be stocking just 75 A1-sized prints on 100lb speckletone white French paper, and it’s strictly first in, best dressed. Thirty-five dollars, please.
There are totes, t-shirts and the uber exclusive WAC comp coffee. It’s an incredible coffee – an SL28 variety selection, grown and produced by Don Carlos of La Perla del Cafe in Costa Rica, and donated by our esteemed coffee partners, Cafe Imports. Don Carlos was the first to get SL28 seeds into Costa Rica and gave them away selflessly to his fellow producers to help everyone improve their coffee quality. Roasted by the fine folk of Elm Coffee Roasters here in Seattle. It’s bloody yum.
And once again, the incredibly popular Aerobie Flying Discs will be flying about…
Make sure you bring cash for the sweet, sweet merch! And make sure you have a ticket, because without a ticket you’ll be forced to go to one of the other lesser fun parties…