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Brewing Guides - Cold Brew Guide

There's nothing quite as refreshing as a smooth, cold-brewed coffee over ice, perhaps with a dash of cream when summer is in full swing.

We'll go over a few ways to make coffee cold, as well as the benefits. First off, one of the outstanding traits of cold brew is the smoothness of the beverage. Another great feature is that brewing is mostly hands-off, either making a Kyoto-style drip or immersion brew; the number of interactions you have with the coffee is minimal, lending itself to consistent brews.

Immersion Brewing

We'll start by covering immersion brewing. This is the easiest way to make cold brew.

What You'll Need

  • You'll need an extremely coarse grind, french press, or coarser. We'll do 150 grams. (medium-medium dark roasts are a good place to start)
  • 750g of cold water
  • A filter, either cheesecloth or a paper drip filter
  • A large brewing container like a 32oz mason jar
Cold Brew Immersion Method

Combine your coffee ratio to water in your brewing container, and store refrigerated for anywhere from 8-48 hours depending on the strength desired.

Once finished brewing, strain it through either a coffee filter or a cheesecloth. If you have an immersion bottle with a removable filter, this will be easy.

A good starting ratio is 1g of coffee to 5g of water, although this will make a concentrate, and dilution is recommended to keep the caffeine content lower

Kyoto-style Drip

Kyoto-style Drip

The other method is the Kyoto-style drip, also known as Dutch-drip. This involves a glass tower filled with ice water, a precise dripping valve, and a coffee bed for the water to drip through. Kyoto drip can bring out the best in lighter roast coffees.

To get started, you'll need a slow drip cold brew maker. These can be somewhat expensive, but Hario makes some reasonable options.

What You'll Need

  • A cold brew tower
  • 750g iced water (the more ice, the better)
  • 150g coffee
  • Some filters appropriate for your brewer (Aeropress often are compatible)  

This one isn't as hands-off as the immersion brew. Slide in and wet the paper filters, then add your iced water and coffee to their respective holders. There are some schools of thought that mandate the filter on top of your coffee as opposed to the bottom. Seeing as this makes no sense to me, I’ve opted to put it on the bottom.

You’ll want to add a little bit of water to your coffee to make a slurry, this will help prevent channeling, maybe 50 grams or so.

Once you've got that going, set a timer for about an hour. Come back and check to see if the drip rate is still accurate. Repeat this process until all your water drips through the coffee.

Now you have some delicious cold brew! Drink it on ice or with milk. You can even add some into drinks for a delightful boozy coffee cocktail.