cold brew coffee: north America’s newest sweetheart


As temperatures skyrocket, coffee consumers turn to the iced versions of their favourite beverages for their caffeine fix. Iced coffee can be made with either hot or cold brew coffee, and in Canada, cold brew coffee is officially in. Cold brew coffee refers to coffee that is steeped for long periods of time using room temperature or cold water. This method yields a smoother, sweeter brew with less acidity than its hot counterpart.

Cold brew coffee is particularly on trend this summer, as evidenced by Starbucks’ new line of cold brewed drinks. However, cold brew coffee has been around for centuries the earliest evidence comes from Japan in the 1600s, where they used the Kyoto method to produce cold coffee. The Kyoto method involves controlling the flow of water so that it falls drop by drop into the coffee grounds. In the past 10 year or so, this method along with the full immersion method have become increasingly popular in North America, starting in Southern USA and spreading to the rest of the continent.


First, you’ll need coffee. This one is great for cold brew coffee:

Honduras San Marcos

Full Immersion: This is the easiest and most popular way to make cold brew coffee at home. All you need is coarsely ground coffee, chilled or room temperature filtered water, and either a French press or a mason jar and a coffee filter. Measure out the coffee grounds and water based on an approximate 1:8 coffee-to-water ratio. Place both in the French press or mason jar, stir, and let sit either in or out of the fridge for 18 24 hours. If youre using a French press, use the plunger to separate the grounds from the coffee. If youre using a mason jar, filter the grounds out using a coffee filter or a fine mesh strainer. Store in the fridge.

Easy Kyoto-Style Cold Brew: For a taste of Kyoto-style cold brew without investing in a cold brew drip tower, use this hack.


50 g coarsely ground coffee

12+ oz receptacle


2 Aeropress filters

12 oz chilled water bottle

Push pin


Puncture the cap of the water bottle with the push pin, making the hole as small as possible. Test the flow one drop should come out every 1-2 seconds. Assemble the Aeropress and place the coffee grounds inside. Moisten the grounds with a small amount of water from the water bottle. Level the grounds and trim the second filter so that you can place it on top of the grounds. Place the Aeropress on top of the receptacle and the water bottle cap-side down on top of Aeropress. When the water bottle is empty, disassemble everything and store the receptacle in the fridge.

Hot bloom: Some coffee lovers are not fans of cold brew coffee because it removes the lighter, acidic notes present in good quality coffee that’s brewed hot. The hot bloom cold brew method is perfect for people who enjoy the acidity of hot coffee but don’t want their iced coffee watered down with melted ice cubes. For this method, follow the above recipe for full immersion cold brew, but heat about 30% of your initial water volume and slowly pour it over the coffee grinds before adding the rest of the water.


If you’re like me and you can’t handle your cold brewed coffee “neat” or “on the rocks,” here are a few different serving ideas.

Iced Latte: Start with a 1:1 ratio of cold brew to water or milk, and adjust according to your taste. Add simple syrup or agave syrup if you prefer your coffee sweet. Serve over ice.

The Derby:

1.5 oz cold brew

¼ oz mint syrup

1 oz bourbon

2-3 oz of club soda

Combine and serve over ice.

Mocha Smoothie (

2/3 cup cold brew

2/3 cup milk of choice

1 scoop chocolate protein powder

2 pitted dates or half a banana

1 tsp cocoa powder

2 cups of ice

Blend and garnish with cacao nibs.

*Consuming caffeine and alcohol at the same time can make you feel less inebriated than you really are. Please enjoy responsibly.