Cold-Brewed Iced Coffee. Or as it’s more popularly known, simply “Cold Brew”. It’s a thing.
The simplified name sums up the process of the way we make iced coffee. Cold Brew coffee is made by putting coffee grinds in a filter bag and submerging them in cold water from 4 to 24 hours. Once the desired time is reached, simply drain the brew out. Pour over ice; you’re done!
Now, it all seems so simple, yeah?
Whether it’s our human-ness or our desire to improve upon what’s good enough, we’ve really been focusing on what makes cold brew better than cold brew. We’ve gone to great lengths to refine what’s good about a beverage and we feel like our cold brew embodies that.
(Nitro Cold Brew on ice)
Our Cold Brew brewing method entails a very quick, hot preinfusion phase with a small percentage of our total water weight. This aids in a quicker finished product and eliminates any potential of off flavors. After we’ve added the portion of hot water, and once we’ve seen the coffees de-gas, we immediately add the rest of our water weight with ice-cold water. Most recipes require 24 hours, though are not incorporating a hot preinfusion phase. Through much experimentation with this method, it has become clear that coffees are totally extracted within 4 hours. Any steep times after 4 hours tend to just add flavors that are not ideal.
Once the Cold Brew has steeped its last steep, we filter it through two stages of filtration, finishing with a very fine filter which leaves no trace of sediment behind. With no excess sediment, the mouthfeel is clean and smooth. Also, by removing all sediment, the possibility of further extraction of grind particulates is eliminated. Basically we’re trying to avoid any chance of some flavor being changed or added.
Our chosen recipe yields a brew that’s very high in strength %, though falls right in the awesome range of extraction %. In order to bring out more nuance and aromatic qualities to the brew, we add water, somewhat like adding water to a fine scotch. This really opens up the brew, allowing aromatics to escape and flavors to be immediately identifiable.
From there it’s kegged and immediately charged with Nitrogen. By charging the Cold Brew with Nitrogen, we’re pressurizing the tank to force the brew through a Guinness beer tap. Another reason we chose to work with Nitrogen is that it dissolves into the brew itself, creating a creamy mouthfeel, and causing a beautiful cascading effect.
The result is Nitro Cold Brew. You may have seen Gracenote Coffee popping up on the Greenway over by Hanover St. recently to hand out some free samples. If you did, you were one of the lucky ones! We had two amazing Kenyan coffees on offer. These will be available occasionally at the café, as well as other amazing coffees on our daily rotations of Nitrogen-charged, Cold-Brewed Iced Coffee. There will always be something great to try.
Don’t hesitate to ask about our Nitro Cold Brew! It’s gonna be great.
See you soon!