Cold Brew Coffee Explained
Cold brew coffee has captured the hearts of coffee drinkers new and old. This drink’s unprecedented exponential popularity compels us to investigate and clarify the true definition of “cold brew.”
Cold Brew? False. On the coffee family tree they are distant cousins at best. Iced coffee is merely hot coffee that has been traditionally brewed, chilled, and poured over ice. You can tell iced coffee from cold brew by the bitter taste that is associated with hot coffee.
Cold Brew Coffee
Now this is cold brew. The anchor of the ready to drink coffee beverage industry and the most popular drink at your local coffee shop. It’s smooth, sweet, and has a lower acid than its iced coffee cousin. To make cold brew, combine coarsely ground coffee with room temperature water and let sit for 12-24 hours. Simply strain the brew, chill it, and serve over ice!
Nitro Cold Brew
If iced coffee is the distant cousin to cold brew, then nitro cold brew is the cool older sibling. Nitrogen-infused cold brew takes the foundation of standard cold brew, but is then infused with nitrogen gas through a pressurized valve to make it creamy and stout-like in texture. The thin layer of foam tops off the drink, whether it be served from keg or can.
The draft latte is the newest development to hit the specialty coffee market. While draft lattes are in their infancy, they have successfully filled the niche of milk-based cold coffee drink without need for ice.
Ready to Drink Cold Brew
The RTD cold brew market has exploded with major players like Stumptown Coffee, Blue Bottle Coffee, Lucky Jack Cold Brew. Many others are also dominating the grocery shelves and introducing coffee to a whole new group of potential coffee drinkers. Cans to cartons, the takeaway cold brew options continue to grow and vary as consumers are clamoring for the smooth cold brew to go.