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The Cold Brew Thread

edited October 2014 in Other Brewing Methods
I'll start this one off.

I'm talking about cold immersion coffee.  It's a very simple process that requires a few things:

Brewing vessel - Bucket or otherwise
Coffee - Duh
Filter - Many options available
Dispensing vessel - Can be same as Brewing vessel, but not easy to pour from a bucket.

Coffee Ratio: I use 10:1 water:coffee grounds
Grind Size: I prefer very coarse, bit coarser than plunger
Roast Level: This is up for debate, but I prefer lighter roasts on 1st crack
Immersion time: Another debatable subject, but I try to keep things less than 8 hrs

Method:

Grind coffee, and add to brewing vessel with some water in the bottom.  This makes it easier to saturate the grounds before adding rest of water.  I use filtered tap water, but you're welcome to add any sort of water you like.  Cap and place brewing vessel in the fridge for allotted immersion time.  Pass brew through a courser sieve to catch the big stuff.  Second pass through your filter media of choice.  I'll use wither cloth or ultra fine mesh, depending on what I want.  Place back in fridge and enjoy.
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Comments

  • My method: Brewing vessel - 5L water dispenser Coffee - Generally I use african Filter - Clean generic Chux cloth Dispensing vessel - As per brewing vessell Coffee Ratio: I use 10:1 filtered tank water:coffee grounds Grind Size: I prefer very coarse, bit coarser than plunger Roast Level: Light roast, pulled as it hits rolling first crack Immersion time: At this point in time I've tried between 12 and 24 hours. So in shot, I use a similar method to WotB. I strain with a standard metal strainer to get the bulk out, and then run it through a single chux lined in a colander, then through a double chux back into washed brewing vessel. The point of my cold brews is to mix 50/50 with milk for delicious iced coffee without sugar, so the extended brewing time might make it a bit muddier in flavour, but that's not so bad for milk based drinks - they taste delicious. I will try bringing my brew time down to see how it affects it. I usually do about 3L at a time. I highly recommend everyone try this method, as it's cheap (generic chux style cloths can be had for 10c each in a 10 pack), and only costs the coffee and a bit of time.
  • I recently tried the following method (see Picture):
      [li]Foam box for stand[/li] [li]Plastic bottle with small hole in the lid for managing the drip[/li] [li]Hario Coffee Syphon upper bowl with filter etc to hold the coffee[/li] [li]Small disc of calico fabric on top of coffee to disperse drips[/li] [li]Old Coffee pot to drip into[/li]
    I used about 1 coffee to 4 water Yirgacheffe Special Prep roasted to just before 2nd Crack. (Should have dropped it much earlier I reckon) Ground to about plunger grind Took about 8 hours or so to drip through Not as good as the one I had at Dandelion & Driftwood a week or so ago, but getting there. I have just roasted some Haiti Grand Cru to try for next time (This time to half way between 1st & where 2nd Crack would have been) Graham
  • My setup: Approx 150g coffee ground slightly coarser than for french press. 750ml french press Metal sieve Paper towel 600 ml bottle Method: Grounds in french press Add water half way up Insert plunger. Top up with water Lift plunger almost to top, but ensure grounds remain submerged. Leave for 8 - 10 hours at room temp. Push plunger down to compress grounds. Put sieve in a jug or bowl Line sieve with paper towel Pour the coffee concentrate through sieve/filter Put into clean 600ml bottle Store in fridge up to a week Good either hot or over ice. I dilute about one part concentrate to four parts water. I'll be trying a couple of the ideas from above.
  • My current method, 170g/l coffee water ratio. Coffee ground for filter mixed with the water and left for approx 12 hours at room temp, hot weather this is down to 8 hours. Filter through coarse mesh, then cova kone (original) then through cheese cloth (might adjust this with the suggestions above). Put into bottles and enjoy with milk 50:50 ratio. Coffee is a medium roast espresso blend, I am going to experiment with some other coffees shortly. Brett
  • Just an update, test batch of Ethiopia Yirgacheffe Harfusa (Thanks Bottom Line). 200g/2L coffee/water.  Let infuse for just under 5 hours.  Filtered off, tastes like apricot jam! This roast was just on the near side of 1st crack. For storage, I recommend a container that seals.  The brew will easily keep for a week or so in the fridge.
  • Harfusa comes up a treat as a cold brew.  I do mine at a higher ratio of coffee:water, and let sit at room temp for about 24hrs. The last batch I did was using a fine grind, and after brewing & filtering let sit in the fridge to mature for a least a week.  Diluted with cold milk, on a hot day it's pretty damn good!
  • Jeff's Maybe Mildly Monsooned Harrar taken to just on first crack, soaked 14 hours. BEAUTIFUL with milk. Light, refreshing on the palate, with a distinct caramel aftertaste.
  • on 1322872163:
    Jeff's Maybe Mildly Monsooned Harrar taken to just on first crack, soaked 14 hours. BEAUTIFUL with milk. Light, refreshing on the palate, with a distinct caramel aftertaste.
    :rofl: MM Harrar - that's a pissa....... Interesting you detect caramel, although I never roasted it that light or extracted via cold press. Does produce amazing blueberries though when the espresso roast is nailed.
  • on 1322874749:
    :rofl: MM Harrar - that's a pissa....... Interesting you detect caramel, although I never roasted it that light or extracted via cold press. Does produce amazing blueberries though when the espresso roast is nailed.
    "YES!" I had blueberries with this at work and everyone looked at me like I had 'lost it.' this is such a seriously good Harrar, I'm eking it out.  Thanks Jeff!
  • on 1322460659:
    Just an update, test batch of Ethiopia Yirgacheffe Harfusa (Thanks Bottom Line). 200g/2L coffee/water.  Let infuse for just under 5 hours.  Filtered off, tastes like apricot jam! This roast was just on the near side of 1st crack.
    Did a similar one - first snaps of first crack. 150g in 600ml water, 10 hours infuse then filter. I can usually pick out chocolate, caramel etc., but when it comes to subtle fruit flavours my palate isn't up to it. This one is really like apricots, no messing around its just like someone stuck an apricot in there.  This is a really nice drink straight, no need for sugar, milk or other additives. I have never roasted this light before. did try some of these beans as an espresso and it was (as expected) very acidic and not at all pleasant I'm going to try a few more beans processed like this.
  • I tried one of these. I only had two Africans and I roasted some Kenya Kagongo Peaberry just into rolling first crack (in my Baby Roaster) and then let it rest for a few days and then ground it coarse and put it to brew, one part to ten by weight. I meant to take it out last night but went to bed instead and strained it this morning. Next time I won't leave it as long to see what difference that makes. It was probably there about 20 hours. I have half that roast left. The smell is simply amazing and the taste is good but maybe I'm just not educated enough to pick out different flavours. I also did some for my son (he's 11) with a tad less coffee in the milk and a bit of sugar and he's happy too. There is a very nice long lasting aftertaste. I'll keep playing about with this with different parameters. I have a bunch of new beans coming too including Yirgacheffe which I've not had before, so I can try some of those as well. I can see myself always having some cold brewed coffee in my fridge.
  • I had two brews sitting in the fridge, and needed to clear some space, so mixed a South American with a Ethiopian Harrar. Tastes like a caramel milkshake with milk in it :)
  • Today's brew: Yemeni and bit of Ugandan 100g/L ratio - 3L batch. Pre-chilled water: 4C at start Infusion time: 3.5hrs Grind size: Coarse (near size of large cous cous) Colour: Similar to brewed red tea Aromatics: Berry fruit Flavours: Cocoa, olive, sweetness Acidity: Near nil
  • on 1328017481:
    Today's brew: Yemeni and bit of Ugandan 100g/L ratio - 3L batch. Pre-chilled water: 4C at start Infusion time: 3.5hrs Grind size: Coarse (near size of large cous cous) Colour: Similar to brewed red tea Aromatics: Berry fruit Flavours: Cocoa, olive, sweetness Acidity: Near nil
    wow - a 3lt batch - that's a serious amount of coffee? what setup are you using to achieve this? p
  • Large cous cous? Now that is coarse!
  • on 1328042713:
    Large cous cous? Now that is coarse!
    The native cuscus (or couscous) draft_lens5083692module37837432photo_1244168272cuscus.jpg
  • Bit darker than the picture.  Was quite the challenge stuffing into the grinder. Re: size - not as big as "giant" cous cous (nearly pea sized), still quite chunky. Pat, as per my first post, I don't do the pretty glass setup, instead utilising full immersion in cold water to achieve results. Re: roast depth - I'm in the area around first crack.  Due to fixed probe location and subsequent discrepencies, posting any worthwhile temperature data is a bit misleading.
  • oh - just read your first post - like the sound of that must bear that in mind for my next catering gig!
  • Just for reference, I've used WoTB's methods, and come up with fantastic results - generally better with africans than south americans for my palate. Bucket/chux/funnel. Cheap, effective. Use ~1:10 ratio of water to coffee, and mix 40/60 with milk for iced coffees. Throw some sugar in if selling commercially. Quick, easy, profitable from your point of view.
  • well, I began bottling and mass production today - invested in a second cold drip filter and managed to bottle 30 x 45ml bottles this afternoon and proceeded to sell ten of them in a very short space of time!
  • Don't suppose you have a photo of the finished product?
  • here's some images of me cold brew packaged and ready to go!
  • Sold 50 cold drip filter coffees at work today - not bad for a product and application which some believe is a passing fad and a distraction from the task of making 'real' coffee!
  • on 1330177090:
    Sold 50 cold drip filter coffees at work today - not bad for a product and application which some believe is a passing fad and a distraction from the task of making 'real' coffee!
    It is real coffee, haven't had much cold brew, but I like it KK
  • If it's well made I find the taste indescribably delicious - and it has approximately twice the caffeine of espresso - except that the body takes up the caffeine more slowly over a longer period of time - so if I have a 45ml shot of cold filter first thing in the morning, this keeps me going till after lunch with an abundant supply of energy that gradually tapers off (unlike espresso which seems to pick me up and then throw me down a half hour latter like a lover scorned which is why I keep on drinking them all day long) It's a win win situation as far as I'm concerned - and with teenage kids coming through the shop in their droves to purchase the cold drip it's opened us up to a whole new demographic!
  • on 1330205482:
    If it's well made I find the taste indescribably delicious - and it has approximately twice the caffeine of espresso - except that the body takes up the caffeine more slowly over a longer period of time - so if I have a 45ml shot of cold filter first thing in the morning, this keeps me going till after lunch with an abundant supply of energy that gradually tapers off (unlike espresso which seems to pick me up and then throw me down a half hour latter like a lover scorned which is why I keep on drinking them all day long) It's a win win situation as far as I'm concerned - and with teenage kids coming through the shop in their droves to purchase the cold drip it's opened us up to a whole new demographic!
    Brilliant mate! You've convinced me to make another batch but if any teenagers come through my door  :pan
  • I took some of the cold brewed to a meeting the other day because I just can't drink the coffee they supply. What do people do to create a hot coffee drink from it? I'm looking for tips. All I did was mix it with some milk and put the mixture in a thermos to keep cold, and then add boiling water while there. It was certainly better than what was supplied but it could do with some improvement. (A Zip type hot water supply is the only hot facility at my most regular meeting venue.) I'm thinking I could have it without milk. Mostly I've been having it as iced coffee but for hot coffee for meetings and so on I need to work something out. It would be good to have a way to make it into a good hot coffee to let other people try, who don't have iced type coffee drinks.
  • Depending in how you make the cold brew and what resources you have available, there are different ways you might go. My cold brew is quite strong (1part coffee, 4 part water, leave 8-10 hours). I  dilute with water just off the boil and drink it black and warm rather than hot. If making it to take in the insulated travel mug, I will then zap in the microwave for 15 seconds. By playing with the concentration of your brew, you should get something that works well with the hot water available. The milk may cause problems though, so why complicate things? Also why spoil perfectly good coffee by adding milk?  :stir :coffee2:
  • I'm a straight up served over ice man myself but if I was going to serve it any other way I'd add it to the milk in the jug, then steam and pour !
  • Thanks for the thoughts! I put milk in it because I usually  make iced coffee from it and was just on "autopilot" in the morning. I'll be doing it without milk next time.
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