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What is Cold Brew Coffee?

If you love to go for café-hoping, or visit Starbucks or Coffee Bean on daily basis just to grab morning caffeine, I am pretty sure you have noticed ‘Cold Brew Coffee’ is in trend lately. You can also find this “new” concept coffee in artisanal cafes such as CSHH Coffee, Common Man Coffee Roasters, Oriole Coffee etc. (which are also known as the pioneers of the third wave coffee movement in Singapore).

Some of you might be still wondering – what is cold brew? How is it different from normal espresso coffee? Well, as the name suggest, cold brew is one of coffee brewing method where cold water is used to extract coffee from the coffee ground.

There are two different ways to make cold brew coffee – one is cold brew immersion method and the other one is cold-drip method (which is also known as Dutch Coffee). How are they different?

Usually Immersion method requires coarsely grounded coffee to be steeped in water 10 to 24 hours. Whereas for cold drip method, icy cold water is dripped over freshly grounded coffee to extract the coffee concentrate, and this whole process will take up to 12 hours.

The coffee concentrate from these cold brewing method is just like an espresso from espresso machine. You can either add water or milk with it to make a cup of americano or latte. Personally, I love to drink cold brew coffee with chunks of ice, but for those who love hot coffee, you can also add warm/hot water or milk to experience new aspect of cold brew coffee.

The flavor of cold brew coffee is very distinctive from that of espresso coffee. As cold brew uses icy water, there is barely oxidization, which makes coffee less acidic and bitter. Slow brewing allows extraction of all kinds of fruity flavors with chocolatey aftertaste. This is the reason why cold brew is often called ‘the wine amongst coffee’. And did you know- all the aromas you smell when brewing hot coffee are flavors that evaporate into the air, whereas for cold brew, it allows aromas to be locked within the coffee.