Cold brew coffee is some of the strongest, most customizable brews out there. It’s increasing popularity has led the specialty coffee industry into unexplored territory that continues to create profound and interesting cups of coffee. Whereas ice coffee is typically brewed hot and then poured over ice, cold brew is brewed in ambient or cold temperatures, creating a well-balanced cup with almost no acidity, lots of chocolate notes, and more caffeine than your typical brew.
But rather than overpaying cafes each time you want to get your cold brew fix, there are a handful of ways that anyone can brew cold brew at home, using equipment that you probably have lying around if you’re not wanting to buy a cold brew brewing mechanism, which, while some are fairly inexpensive, still takes up room in your cupboard or pantry or counter, and really only serves one purpose: to brew coffee cold.
If you have a French press, then it’s as easy as coarsely grinding your preferred coffee, we recommend Volcanica’s Cold Brew blend, and loading it up with twice the amount of ground coffee that you’d normally use for hot French press coffee. A good ratio to use that comes out with a consistently delicious cup of cold brew is 1:8 coffee to water, though this can easily be adjusted based on preferences of strength and caffeine sensitivity.
Next, you’ll just fill up your French press with cold or room temperature filtered water, and then let it sit in the fridge for 10-12 hours, or overnight. What we like about the French press method for making cold brew is that it has a built in filter that you easily plunge down when the time is right, and pour your cold brew into a container, like a jar or really large glass that you can keep in the fridge and dispense your cold brew whenever you have a fancy for it.
Other methods of making cold brew is very similar to the French press method, but with a mason jar, or any other similar types of container that you can put water and coarsely ground coffee in. Use the same 1:8 ratio of coffee to water. After letting it brew for the above stated time, you’ll place a cheesecloth over a bowl and pour the grounds and cold brew in, and then simply separate the ground and coffee by hand. The process sounds a lot more tedious than it is. All the grounds will be separated from the cold brew once you’ve fully squeezed out every last drop, and you’ll have great upper body strength once it’s all said and done.
Ultimately, if you’re as big of a cold brew fanatic as we are, then we recommend simply getting a brewing mechanism at your local cafe, grocery store, or any other provider, either online or brick-and-mortar, because after less than a month of consistent use it’ll pay for itself when you don’t have to find yourself scrambling out the door at 4am before work to get your cold brew fix.
After the 10-12 hour brewing time has passed, make sure to remove the coffee grounds. Leaving it in longer will add bitterness to your cold brew.