Cold brew has been around for a very long time, but it has gained insane popularity in recent years, which I am certainly not mad about! Let’s talk about cold brew and what makes it so amazing.
First and foremost, cold brew IS NOT iced coffee. Iced coffee is simply taking a regular brewed cup of coffee and pouring it over ice. Cold brew refers to the process of steeping coffee in water (like making tea) for 12-24 hours. This long process results in coffee with significantly less acidity & bitterness (so it’s easier on the stomach) and a smoother, sweeter flavor.
Something people don’t realize about cold brew is that it can also be served hot. Cold brew just refers to the brewing method, but it doesn’t need to actually be served cold. Heating it up will give you an amazing cup of coffee with very little acidity!
Let’s talk about some tips for making your own cold brew. Steeping the coffee at room temperature actually extracts more flavor and yields a much bolder, stronger coffee. Keep in mind that when I say stronger, I do not mean caffeine-wise. Most the caffeine is extracted in the first few hours, so you won’t get more caffeine by letting it sit for longer.
The general rule for cold brew is 12-24 hours to steep, but I’ve found 16 hours to be the perfect length. Once you get over 20 hours, you start to get a bitter, over-extracted flavor. 14-18 hours is the sweet spot.
A lot of people are intimidated by making cold brew because of all the equipment out there- but you don’t need any of it! Sure, these devices make brewing much easier, but aren’t a necessity. You can get a great cold brew by letting coffee grounds sit in a large bowl of water, and then filtering out the coffee grounds. It’s really that easy!
All of that being said, it starts to become obvious why cold brew is always more expensive than hot coffee. But it is 100% worth it!