It has been a few years since its debut, but cold brew coffee still seems to be rendering many caffeine lovers a little confused.
Iced Coffee In Front of Window By: Skyler Ardrey
What is it?
How is it different from a latte?
Why are coffee enthusiasts so crazy about it?
These are all great questions! And the Coffee Collective has found the perfect way, and the perfect people, to answer all of these classic caffeine inspired questions.
First, it is time to break down question #1 what is cold brew coffee?
Cold Brew In Glass Mug By: Mariah P. K. Ardrey
According to Meyer, when it comes to cold brew coffee, there really isn't much of a mystery hiding behind the name. Cold brew, quite simply, is coffee that is brewed without the use of heat, traditionally. The only real question is, why do so many people treat this method of coffee crafting as such an outlandish idea? After all, the outcome of cold brewing really should not come to most as a surprise, according to Meyer, "The truth is, if [something] is put in water—and that something is at all water soluble, meaning it can dissolve—it will infuse the water with its flavor,". Hence, coffee in general. But, even more so (in this case) of cold brewed coffee.
With that being said, if cold brewed coffee really isn't so different from any other type of coffee, what then, is the purpose for question #3 why are coffee enthusiasts so crazy about it?
According to the Time's brief introduction/explanation on "why cold brew", "...cold-brewed coffee is actually dirt simple to make at home...just add water to coffee, stir, cover it and leave it out on the counter overnight....Except for the time it sits on the kitchen counter, the whole process takes about five minutes."
Now, to be clear though, the real beauty in cold brew does not all surmise in the ease it takes to make it. As a matter of fact, the process, or as some experts refer to it, "the method", behind cold brew coffee, varies greatly.
The Benefits Of Cold Brew By: Mariah P. K. Ardrey
In the end, to make good cold brew, designed to satisfy any one individuals specific tastes, the brewer must take into consideration...the bean, the time brewed, the temperature of the water, the machine being used, and so much more.
But according to Haley Nahman, in her article titled Cold Brew vs. Iced Coffee: an Investigation, on Man-Repeller.com, this is how question #2, how is cold brew different from regular iced coffee? , is answered.
Nahman reports, that in a discussion with Nick Duckworth (Co-Founder of Banter) he said, “Cold brew is the strongest form of iced coffee...the term “iced coffee” is used very loosely, but that colloquially, 'iced coffee is [hot] filtered coffee over ice, whereas cold brew is ground coffee beans soaked in water for 12 hours to form a concentrate.'”
"So, while technically cold brew is a type of iced coffee, people usually differentiate between the two based on the temperature at which they’re brewed," Nahman also said.
And it all depends on the desired outcome of the brew that any coffee expert, barista, or at home brewer, is trying to aim for.
Striped Ceramic Coffee Mug By: Slyer Ardrey
Sands' dedication to craft has come a long way, despite the coffee expert's youth. He helped to co-found Grady's Cold Brew in 2011. And since the New Orleans styled concentrate made its debut within the company, Sands has been making leaps and bounds towards further success. But, with success, there comes struggle.
According to Wired's article, "Cold brew coffee is both a labor of love and an exercise in meticulous crafting. Its unique brewing method transforms otherwise simple ingredients into a style of iced coffee with distinct color, character, and flavor. But Grady’s has elevated the cold brew process altogether with its own unique recipe. Sands and his Grady’s co-founders created a carefully metered marriage of rich coffee, ground chicory, spices, and cold water, steeping the mixture steep in a cool, quiet place for about 20 hours before extracting the grounds in a two-step filtration process. [The] resulting concentrate lets consumers dilute and serve to [personal] preference, yielding a bold but smooth cup-of-cold-joe without any of the bitterness associated with hot brewed iced coffee."
Pair that with the apparently remarkable service of both Sands and his fellow crew mates, "The appeal was immediate. What started as a kitchen-based hobby quickly transformed into a growing business..." and from there, Grady's only kept growing.
And, just like Grady's growing success, cold brew's (as a singular and separate entity) popularity only continues to grow.
In the end, that leaves only one last question.
Luckily though, it has an easy answer.
Question #4 Never tried cold brew, but are curious/looking to try something new? Order a cup, today!