Summer is around the corner. A cup of hot coffee is less tempting for most people. However, as coffee lovers, we still need our caffeine fix as usual.
A friend from Chongqing (Hotpot city) asked me about cold brew coffee because she would like to introduce a new beverage in her recently opened hotpot restaurant.
My first reaction was: This is cool! It’s a bold and chic combination, and yet its flavor is mysterious.
My friend has inspired me to understand what cold brew is and how it is made.
What is cold brew?
Many people know about cold brew from Starbucks.
We usually order a pour-over or siphon single-origin coffee as hot brewed, i.e., using hot water to extract coffee and also then drinking it hot.
Cold brew is different from ordinary iced coffee, which was brewed with hot water and then added into ice cubes.
Cold brew is to extract coffee using room temperature water or even ice water.
Due to low temperature, substances with larger molecules, such as tannic acid, are not easily extracted. Therefore, cold brew coffee is smooth, less bitterness, and has zero astringency.
Cold beverages are instantly refreshing durning the hot summer. Cold brew not only energizes our brain but is also convenient. It can keep the original flavors of the hot coffee we love, depending on coffee varieties and roasting level, but now with the new trend of home-made cold brew.
In fact, cold brew has been popular in the U.S. for quite a while and is still increasingly trendy.
Data show that as new products continue to surprise us, sales of cold brew in the United States in 2017 are 28% higher than those of regular iced coffee, and by 2018 it is 40% higher. Meanwhile, cold brew is more popular in Canada than in the United States. To put it into perspective, in 2018, Canada sold 85% more cold brew than regular coffee!
The cold brew trend is continuing to get hotter and hotter.
Nitrogen cold brew coffee is amazingly delicious!
By adding nitrogen into the cold brew coffee, a unique silky and dense texture will be created. While drinking, countless small bubbles make the mouth feel thicker and smooth.
In addition, nitrogen helps keep coffee liquids fresh.
According to Matthew Hartings, a professor of food chemistry at a university in the U.S., coffee is highly oxidizable. Similar to rusting of iron, the longer it’s exposed to oxygen, the more acid and bitterness it produces. Therefore, adding nitrogen can slow down the degradation rate of coffee flavor substances.
Through adding nitrogen, the oxygen in the coffee liquid is forced out, which makes the flavor essences in coffee more stable.
In the hot summer of almost 40 degrees, who can refuse a glass of smooth, delicious and flavorful nitrogen cold brew?
Making and storing is easy
Most of cold brew can be produced in bulk. Since it's extracted in a lower temperature, cold brew beverages can be stored for a longer period of time, which is convenient for (chain) coffee shops of higher volume.
--How many ways to serve cold brew?
-- The answer is infinite!
You can make different extraction cold brews by adjusting water and coffee ratio, or adding juices, syrup, honey, milk, soda, alcohol or even food.
Maybe my hotpot restaurant owner friend will dip hotpot food into cold brew coffee and eat. Who knows, it may work! The recipe combinations of cold brew drinks are beyond your imagination.
For example, at Torch café, we added nitrogen into cold brew coffee, which makes an explosive mouthfeel.
Not only do we have millions of flavor combinations, but also thousands of creative packaging ideas.
Some designs are dazzling and too lovely to resist.
Some cold brew capsules are designed as pocket-sized takeaway cups.
Some are like tea bags that can be soaked and drunk.
Mixed with Gin is also a popular choice.
Maybe you would like some spice.
Of course, you can be adventurous and add fruit and cream.
For coffee shop owners, these are all ideas of seasonal drinks!
How can we not love this one drink that satisfies our many desires? Come on and check out this trendy beverage immediately!
We’ll share more about the theory and methods of making cold brew next time. Stay in tune and feel free to share your thoughts or recipes!