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Your fool-proof guide to Cold Brew Coffee

I love cold brew coffee. Even more than a hot brew. Maybe because I live in a tropical place where there’s barely any winter. But its not just because the climate around me that I like a cold brew. A cold brew gives me a better coffee drinking experience. Since there is no heating involved during brewing of the coffee, a cold brew will have up to 70% lower acidity than a hot brew as a lot of oils in the beans do not get released. Due to this, a cold brew will have a smoother and sweeter flavor profile. And that’s what I like. Plus, a cup or two more than usual of cold brew will have lesser chances of giving you that acidity and heartburn than a hot brew would.

Do not mix up a cold brew with cold iced coffee. They’re not the same. Cold brew refers to the way the coffee is brewed, while an iced coffee is the way it is served. Cold brew is best had black, without milk and sugar. Though this is not a rule, everyone has their own preference. Iced coffee is coffee brew poured on ice, may or may not be served with milk and sugar, not necessarily made using cold brewed coffee.

I often find people really confused about cold brew. A lot of them find it really tedious to have to plan a day in advance to be able to drink their coffee the next day. Well, for me, I always have a jar of coffee brewing in my refrigerator, that ways, I always have some to drink whenever I want to. I even used to carry the brew with me to office in a flask. Its easy and convenient. You don’t need any fancy equipment to brew it – no French Press, no Aero Press, no Moka Pot, nothing. Just a jar, some coffee and some water.

Today, I am going to help you break down some myths and learn more about the often confused and misunderstood cold brew coffee with this fool-proof guide.

What is Cold Brew Coffee?

Cold brewing a is a brewing technique. It can be used for tea as well as coffee. Instead of brewing the beverage with hot water for a few minutes, cold brewing involves steeping the beverage – coffee grounds or tea leaves in cold water for 12 to 24 hours. Those wanting a milder beverage can steep it for about 12-15 hours, while those wanting a stronger beverage can steep it for 24 hours.

Cold brewing generally requires twice the amount of coffee as compared to traditional hot brewing methods. Also, the resultant cold brew will be quite strong on its own. Due to this, most people tend to dilute the brew with some more water before drinking their coffee. However, to dilute or not, is a mater of personal choice.

What are the benefits of cold brew coffee?

Cold brew coffee has its own benefits compared to traditional hot brews.

Lower Acidity

Cold brew coffee is less acidic than hot-brewed coffee. As a result, it is smoother and tastes sweeter The bitterness in cold brew is also less than hot brew coffee. Due to the lower acidity, its easy on the stomach, and has lesser probability of giving you that much-dreaded acidity and heartburn.

Smoother Coffee

Well, coffee is a smooth beverage to have, no doubt. But cold brew is smoother and more mellow to taste compared to hot brew coffee. This happens because hot water causes the coffee grounds to release their oils and acids, something that does not happen with cold brews.

Doesn’t feel watery

Cold brew coffee is generally quite concentrated, however, this would depend on the amount of water you’ve used to make the brew. If you follow the standard instructions, you will get a concentrate, which when diluted for consumption, will not feel watered down. Now when you make iced coffee by pouring a hot brew over ice, it can feel watered down, but if you pour the cold brew over ice, it won’t feel watered down.

Better shelf life

A hot brew can go stale in a day, but a cold brew, when brewed properly and kept under refrigeration can be stored for up to 10 days. So, it has a better shelf life. You can make a batch, say on a weekend, and then use it all through the week.

The Mason Jar Method

You can follow this simple mason jar method to make your cold brew. As I said before, all you need is some coffee grounds (ground coarsely), some water and a jar. And yes, a refrigerator to brew it in.

The Mason Jar method for making cold brew coffee

The French Press Method

Alternatively, if you have a French Press, you can use it to make cold brew coffee and tea as well. Here’s how you can use the French Press to make cold brew coffee.

The French Press method for making cold brew

In this way, you can use the French Press to make your cold brew coffee easily. It will keep your French press busy for a day, and you won’t be able to use it for making any other coffee or tea. But isn’t the glass of cold brew coffee worth everything?

So, that’s how you make a cold brew coffee easily. Now you also know the difference between an iced coffee, a cold coffee and a cold brew coffee. IT makes for a perfect chilled beverage in the hot summers, though I quite enjoy it all through the year no matter the weather outside.

Cold brew coffee doesn’t have to be complicated. With these easy and simple instructions, you can now enjoy the smooth, mellow flavor of cold-brewed coffee at home. And do remember me when you take that first sip. You can tell me how you like the cold brew coffee in the comments below.

Quick tip: You can try to dilute it with coconut water instead of regular filtered water for a lovely coconut flavor. You can also mix it with some tonic water to make coffee and tonic, which is quite a hit beverage these days. You can also mix it with ginger ale for a great kicking mocktail. And if you’re in a mood to take it up a notch, then make a lovely cold brew martini by mixing the cold brew coffee concentrate with some gin or vodka. Finish it with a squeeze of lemon or some coconut water.

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