AeroPress Clear and Go Plus Review: Colorful, Portable Coffee Makers

AeroPress is one of the most beloved brands and coffee brewers in all of coffee-dom. Part of this is because the brewer is so unique. Alan Adler invented it. He’s the same guy who invented the Aerobie, a flying disc so aerodynamic that you could chuck it out of a stadium, and he seemed pretty happy with his two-product product line. Years after its debut, it still feels clever and makes great coffee. Pour hot water over grounds in the brewing chamber, stir, wait a beat, then use a plunger to push the coffee through a filter and directly into a mug. It’s like making coffee in a giant syringe.

After the AeroPress Original came the sublime Go, a compact model beloved by travelers and campers where all of its parts pack into a cup held together with a rubbery red lid. Both make outstanding coffee. While fans clamored for more, it was also hard to imagine what that would be. For a while, they didn’t get anything. After a 2021 investment by the Canadian firm Tiny, more AeroPress gear appeared. The Clear seemed like it would be a natural upgrade of and replacement for the Original, yet the plunger in early models connected to the base in a way that was a little too wobbly for me.

The XL was indeed big—twice as large as the Original—but the extra size brought extra peril, which is extra bad considering that while AeroPress spills are rare, they are a true hot mess. Besides, if you already owned another AeroPress, adding another one didn’t make a lot of sense. Finally, a flow-control cap and a metal filter left our testing crew unimpressed. This put a funny amount of pressure on two new arrivals. The slightly retooled Clear now comes in a mini-rainbow of colors, and there’s now a full-size brewer and travel mug combo called the Go Plus. I ordered a giant bag of coffee and got to testing.

Rainbow Bright

First up was the Clear, which is made of BPA-free Tritan plastic. It first came out in late 2023 and since then has been subtly reworked. It also comes in a brand new set of colors. Normally, colors aren’t really my thing, because I am more interested in performance. The brioche and chiffon pink Dutch ovens from Le Creuset perform the same as their classic reds and oranges.

But the AeroPress coming in different colors could open doors. For years, their Original has been made from an opaque gray plastic that would be right at home in a lab- or plumbing-supply shop. The Clear comes in a clear and clear gray, but it’s not much of a stretch to think that cheery colors like red, green, blue, and purple can change a lot there.

Two coffee makers side by side both with cylindrical containers sitting on top of clear mugs as coffee drips down inside

Photograph: Amazon

The coffee it produces is identical to the excellent coffee the Original and Go make. It is also just as neat and tidy as they are. After you depress the plunger, you can remove the cap and push out a neat little puck of spent grounds directly into your compost bin. There is barely any mess.

This isn’t a problem exclusive to the Clear, but I wish they could have used the move to Tritan as the time to clear up an issue where the filter cap doesn’t connect to the brewing chamber easily, a process that the company calls “engaging.” It becomes more noticeable when using the inverted brewing method, where you stand the plunger on the countertop, mount the brewing chamber on it, add the grounds and water and agitate, then put on the filter and cap, carefully flip it onto your mug, and depress.

On the flip side, AeroPress seems to have cleared up an issue with the Clear where the end of the plunger didn’t fit as snugly into the end of the brewing chamber as I’d like, but I wish they’d fix that engagement for all of its brewers.

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