Engineers Continue to Develop Coffee Brewing Processes
Tom Spendlove posted on November 05, 2016 |

Christopher McLean and Bruce Constantine have dedicated much of their lives to refining the process of coffee making. They met at QuestAir Technologies, designing fuel cell vehicles and talking about a mutual love of coffee. Taking inspiration from the sleek look of the Mercedes Benz vehicles and the different filtering methods around them, McLean and Constantine began to develop ideas about brewing. Their passion turned into the Espro Press and eventually the Espro travel press.

After finalizing the brewing process, the focus turned to workers who drank their first cup outside of the home or coffee shop. The guts of the problem statement that the team used was a lack of portability for coffee presses. Creating tools that would allow users to make their own french press, pour over, or tea in a travel mug presented design and development challenges.

The french press module seals itself inside the mug and descends to brew the coffee, allowing the coffee's aromatic oils to escape into the brew and leaving the grounds underneath. Extraction is blocked after filtering so the coffee tastes the same through the entire mug. A paper filter locks between two microfilters for users who like pour over coffee, creating a new process they call 'paper filter pressed coffee.' Tea drinkers who are frustrated with overextraction, burnt fingers, or tea leaves escaping into their drink also have a solution. A smaller unit for tea presents the same seal and the team says their filter is up to twelve times finer than current tea filters.

Espro's mug itself is 450 milliliters, holding 12 ounces of tea or 10 ounces of coffee when the plunger is inserted. The mug's diameter is 70 millimeters with a 200 millimeter height when closed. Involving all phases of production - farmers, roasters, blenders, manufacturing partners, suppliers, and consumers - has been a constant force in the product development process. It's great to see what can happen when engineers dedicate their lives to developing products based on their hobbies and interests. The first patent that would become Espro is more than a decade old, and the newer patent for this portable infusing container has also been years in the making.

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