Cold brewed coffee has been around for decades. This might be news to many people but I can tell you that my grandfather actually cold brewed his coffee for 40 years and that was 30 years ago. The actual origin of cold brewing is a bit unknown, but there are stories of ancient people in Central and South America brewing coffee using a cold water process.Whatever the case, this brew method is coming out of the shadows and taking center stage in the world of coffee brewing.
Cold brew coffee can be now be purchased at virtually any grocery store. From companies such as Stumptown, and Califia Farms bottling cold brew in stubbies, growlers, or cartons, to large corporations like International Delight selling iced coffee in cartons in the milk aisle, cold brew coffee and it’s sidekick iced coffee, (although not all iced coffee sold at the store uses a cold brew process) are now going mainstream. Heck, even Starbucks is getting into the cold brew business.
The problem is buying pre-bottled cold brew or a drink at a coffee house can be expensive, costing up to $4 per serving or more, some of the options out there are not that portable (glass bottles are not something many people may want to tote around with them in their bag) and none give you the choice of coffee or brew time. While buying pre-bottled cold brew, or stopping in for a drink at a local coffee house, might be great options once in awhile, long term nothing beats making cold brew at home using your favorite coffee, filtered water and the brew time that suits your taste.
How Long Does Cold Brew Coffee Take To Brew?
Let’s be honest, cold brew coffee does take time to make (12-72 hours depending on how strong you like it) but it’s an easy adjustment to fit into any lifestyle. For me, I prefer a 24 hour brew cycle, so when I’m drinking my last serving I start my next brew cycle, which is really nothing more than adding grounds to the filter, adding water and letting it sit on the counter until the next morning. All in all, about 60 seconds of preparation. The next morning I have 12 days of coffee (if I don’t share) that I can use to make instant hot or iced coffee whenever I want a cup.
The extract is easy and convenient to use, stores in the refrigerator, and can go anywhere I go in one of the accessory pieces that the BOD (my cold brewer of choice) includes. All I need is hot or cold water and I’ve got cold brew coffee, at about .30 per serving. Making cold brew at home also gives you the flexibility to try different beans, roasts, and brew times to really personalize each cup. Because cold brewing produces a super-concentrated extract that needs dilution with water if you make your own cold brew at home you have the added benefit to adjust the coffee to water ratio based on your taste (you can’t do that at the coffee house).
One thing is for certain, cold brewed coffee is here to stay, because people love the taste. Once you have cold brew it’s hard to go back to anything else. Taste buds have quite a memory!