Cold coffee brings the best of both worlds during the summer, offering a respite from the sweltering days plus a welcome jolt of energy to get us into gear. And good news: cold coffee offers just as wide a variety of styles and flavors as hot coffee, so there's something to satisfy any palate - provided you enjoy coffee on the whole! In this blog, we'll cover a couple of different approaches to making cold coffee at home and offer some enticing cold coffee recipes to try next time you're after a new and tasty way of cooling down.
Cold coffee method 1 - cold brew coffee
Cold brew coffee is made by steeping coarsely ground coffee beans in cold water at room temperature for an extended period, typically 12 to 24 hours. Once time's up, the coffee is filtered to remove the coffee grounds, leaving you with a cold coffee mixture that you can enjoy on its own, with ice, water, milk, or any other preferred ingredients. The slow-brewing process used for making cold brew coffee leaves behind a lot of the compounds that give regular coffee its bitter taste, resulting in a smooth, low-acidic drink that many find more palatable than regular coffee.
Here are a few different cold coffee recipes you can make using this brewing method:
Classic cold brew
A classic cold brew coffee is made in the way described above. To make your classic cold brew, simply:
Nitro coffees are made in much the same way as cold brew coffee, plus they're infused with nitrogen to give them a layer of foam on top. Only created in the early 2010s, this coffee style has grown in popularity in recent years thanks to its distinctive creamy, velvety texture that sets it apart from other coffee styles.
Making nitro coffee at home requires a bit of kit, but an alternative approach makes it a little more inclusive. To make yours, begin by following the standard cold brew process of steeping your coffee grounds for 12-24 hrs before straining it to remove the grounds. Next comes the 'nitro' part. If you're fortunate enough to own a nitro coffee maker, add the coffee to the machine, charge it using two nitrous oxide cartridges, shake the dispenser for roughly 30 seconds, and pour it into your Nachtmann coffee glass.
If you don't own a specialized nitro coffee maker, you can instead add the nitrogen dispensers to a whipped cream dispenser, seal the dispenser, shake for around 30 seconds, pour into your glass, then wait a minute or two for the foam to form on top.
Whichever method you use, as with regular cold brew coffee, you can then add your choice of milk, syrup, cream, or anything else you fancy to alter your coffee's overall flavor.
Cold coffee method 2 - iced coffee
On the face of it, there is no discernible difference between cold brew coffee and iced coffee, but their brewing processes and resulting flavors differ considerably! While cold brew coffee is made by brewing coffee at a low temperature, iced coffee is brewed using hot water and traditional brewing methods like pour-over or pressurized espresso shots. The hot coffee is then cooled down quickly by adding cold milk, cream, or water and adding ice, or by pouring it over ice.
This faster brewing process results in a chilled coffee that retains the bitterness of regular coffee, in contrast to the softer, sweeter qualities that the steeping process imparts into cold brew coffee. That doesn't make iced coffee any less delicious in our eyes, though, and the faster nature of the chilling process compared with cold brew coffee means you don't need to plan as far in advance when making iced coffee. Like with cold brew coffee, there are many ways to utilize iced coffee, so here are a few examples you can try out to delight your tastebuds.
Vietnamese iced coffee
A sweet classic that uses sweet, creamy condensed milk to balance out the rich bitterness of the coffee. To make yours:
Iced Dalgona Coffee
This is one recipe you can make using instant coffee! First developed in Macau in 2004, this unique recipe took on the name 'Dalgona Coffee' in 2020 after it featured on a Korean tv show, and viewers observed its likeness to the Korean honeycomb toffee called dalgona.
To make your own Dalgona Coffee at home, whip together equal parts instant coffee, sugar, and boiling water until the mixture becomes creamy (about 5 minutes). Add this mixture to your half-filled glass of milk, add ice and stir, and your Dalgona Coffee is ready to serve!
We hope you find the above information helpful for those days when chilled beverages are a must, or if you simply prefer the overall experience brought by a cold brew or iced coffee. For more coffee-related content, check out our blog detailing the many coffee-related variables you can alter to maximize your coffee enjoyment.