Everyone has heard of cold brew, but do you really know what it is? How does it differ from iced coffee? The answer is quite simple. Iced coffee can be made with either hot or cold brewed coffee, and this summer, cold brew 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.
3 COFFEE CHOICES
Panama: Light roast for delicate sweetness, notes of toasted almond and honey
Honduras: Medium roast for chocolatey body, citrus highlights and good intensity.
Black Velvet: French roast for punchy intense flavour, burnt sugar notes with sharp acidity.
3 WAYS TO MAKE IT
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 grease or cotton 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 you’re using a French press, use the plunger to separate the grounds from the coffee. If you’re using a mason jar, filter the grounds out using a grease or cotton filter. Store in the fridge.
- 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.
3 WAYS TO SERVE IT
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.
- 1.5 oz cold brew
- ¼ oz mint syrup
- 1 oz bourbon
- 2-3 oz of club soda
Combine and serve over ice.
- 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.