An introduction to
Why is Cold Brew so Awesome?
In terms of a extracting a smooth and velvety coffee, the cold brew method stands mountains above the rest. In the cold brew method, the coffee is ground coarse and is steeped in cold water over hours to days. This allows the coffee to extract slowly and evenly, reducing the acidity and giving you the perfect cup of refreshing brew.
Through precisely measured coffee: water ratios, enabling the coffee to bloom and degas, and facilitating a slow extraction process, the cold brew method yields a consistently pure, crisp and smooth brew. The reduced acidity in cold brew also lets you enjoy more of the undertones that make each coffee unique.
Plus, it’s pretty easy and doesn’t require expensive equipment. So, let’s get started.
- Clean 64oz Mason Jar
- Coffee Grinder
- Coffee Scale
- Whole Bean Coffee
- Filtered Water (38°-42° F)
- Coffee Filtering Device OR Cheesecloth
Average Brew Time: 18-24 hours
Measure, or dose-out, your coffee : water ratio.
For this Cold Brew method, we recommend using a 1:4 ratio of coffee to water. This will yeild what is known a a concentrate, and can be diluted to taste once finished. This way you are able to make the most out of each batch .
We recommend 250g of coffee to 1000ml of water.
Bring your water to temperature by putting it in the refrigerator for ~3 hours (pro tip: pour your water over ice to jump start the process)
Let your water settle and allow the temperature to stabilize as you complete the following step. You want the temperature to be precise and consistent throughout your vessel for the most even extraction.
Grind your coffee.
For the Cold Brew method, you will want to aim for a coarse grind, similar to that of Kosher salt.
The reason for the large grind size is that it reduces the surface area for coffee to water contact. This allows a slow and even extraction which prevents the coffee from becoming bitter. This long extraction process is what makes cold brew coffee so smooth to drink.
Try to make the grind as consistent as possible to get an even extraction of flavor from your beans.
Initiate the extraction process.
Add your fresh grounds to the 64oz mason jar and pour in about 200ml of chilled water, or until all of the grounds are wet.
Wait 30-40 seconds or until the coffee stops bubbling.
This process is called blooming. Wetting the grounds like this, before pouring the rest of the water lets the coffee release some of it’s volatile gasses (namely CO2) and ensure that your grounds will be evenly extracted when you pour in the rest of the water.
Pour in the rest of your chilled water, then stir lightly until all the grounds are wet and evenly distributed throughout the water.
Close the mason jar and store it in the refrigerator for the next 18-24 hours.
Because cold brew is extracted over a long period and the optimal extraction time can vary based on the grind, and type of coffee. We recommend tasting at the 18 hour mark. Then you can filter it, or decide to leave it longer depending on your taste.
Filter your delicious cold brew.
We recommend using a french press or cheesecloth for this step, but other filter devices can work as well.
Pour your cold brew concentrate through the filter into a clean glass vessel (eg. a pitcher or mason jar).
Once filtered, you can pour a glass and dilute your cold brew with water, ice, or milk and enjoy a smooth, highly caffeinated drink that was worth the wait.
While your home equipment may seem sufficient, we have outlined our recommended line-up below if you want to dial-in your coffee set up.
In terms of Cold Brew equipment, we recommend the Toddy Cold Brew System. The system is simple, convenient, and affordable. The mason jar method works, but can sometimes yield murky, sub-optimal, brew if not filtered properly. Toddy also provides a strong and pure cold brew concentrate, but the slow filter process prevents the grounds from breaking up, keeping the coffee clean and crisp. As a result, you get to enjoy the smoothest and least acidic cold brew in your cup.
For a coffee grinder, it would be difficult to beat the quality of the Baratza Encore for the price. It is hands-down the most affordable quality grinder on the market, and it yields consistent and even grinds. Consistency is key, especially with cold brew. Since this method takes place over hours, uneven grounds can disrupt your brew and lead to over extraction and unwanted bitterness.
Since precision is essential to a quality brew, you may consider a Brewista Ratio Scale for its precise measurements. This coffee scale also has the ability to give your pouring speed when using a V60 brew method, which optimizes extraction time for the perfect cup.
The whole bean coffee you use with the Cold Brew method can vary to your taste. However, since the Cold Brew is so capable of pulling out the undertones in complex coffee, we'd suggest a high-altitude coffee with a medium to light roast profile or one of our blends that we designed specifically for Cold Brew. You can find these qualities in our Dominican Republic, Haiti, and Peloton beans, bringing you the most enjoyment in your Cold Brew experience.