Before we go on to discuss the pros and cons of the superhit cold brew coffee, let us ensure that we understand them correctly. If you are a coffee lover, you’ll love the cold brew style of coffee. Its light body makes all the difference.
These cold brew coffees are quite different from our regular iced or hot coffees. Right from the time consumed in preparing to how you grind your coffee beans differs for cold brew.
You might also have already heard that cold brew coffee is usually lighter, crisper, brighter, fruitier, and more fun!
So, before we get into the nitty-gritty and the actual pros and cons of a cold brew, let us quickly understand how we prepare it.
All About Cold Brew
While cold brew coffee is becoming more popular as a way to ingest the bean, it is not a new concept. Many people have been brewing it in the French press for a long time.
Cold brew coffee has been drunk in Japan since the 1600s, and maybe much earlier. This brewing method results in a less astringent beverage than hot brewed coffee.
A cold brew can take anywhere from 12 to 24 hours to fully brew and be ready for drinking using effective brewing methods. Because cold or room temperature water is used, it takes this long to let the coffee steep and absorb all of the taste and caffeine from them.
We also need to grind coffee beans coarser than we normally would for hot coffee. And we use filtered water to make cold brews. You can also secure pre-grounded coffee.
We use cold to normal temperature water to brew this kind of coffee which results in less bitter components and an overall sweeter flavor.
Pros of Cold Brew Coffee
Apart from being significantly sweeter and lighter in taste than iced coffee, this cold brewing coffee also boasts several health benefits. Let’s discuss all pros of cold brew coffees.
1. Cold Brew Lasts Longer
These days cold brew coffee recipes like cold brew concentrates are gaining traction among the fans. This method produces a concentrate that can be mixed with cold water at demand.
This coffee can last up to two weeks. Although it lasts longer, it starts losing the potency of flavor after one week.
2. Low Astringency and Bitterness
Depending on the brewing methods, a cold brew can be as much as 70% less acidic than a standard hot coffee on ice. Thus, this makes it a healthier alternative for those who suffer from acid reflux or gastrointestinal issues.
Cold brew coffee is a smoother drink for most individuals due to the lack of non-deprotonated acid molecules.
3. Improves Mental Acuity
We generally dose a higher amount of coffee to steep them longer in cold water. This is because we want maximum extraction from our coarsely ground coffee. But this also means that it will have a higher caffeine amount.
Caffeine in this type of coffee makes you feel more concentrated and energized. It naturally boosts brain activity in the same manner that all stimulants do.
4. Health Benefits of Cold Brew
Drinking coffee offers several health benefits. According to several research studies, people who drink one and a half cups of cold brew (equal to three or more cups of regular-strength coffee) each day are 40% less likely to develop type 2 diabetes.
Also, this coffee is better for people with sensitive stomachs, as we mentioned earlier. It avoids bloating, diarrhea, and abdominal pain, unlike normal iced coffee.
Cons of Cold Brew Coffee
Unlike regular iced coffee, this coffee tends to have lesser cons than pros (or at least less severe cons). Read on to find the cons of cold brew.
1. Takes A Long Time to Brew
Preparing a cold brew is not an instant process. To prepare iced coffee, you can use your standard brewing method and serve it on ice with minor tweaks in the recipe.
We can make iced coffee using hot brewed coffee from our drip coffee maker, V60, or espresso machine. Due to the smaller brew ratio, making coffee this way is less time-consuming.
However, cold brew coffee takes 12-24 hours to brew. This means you have to prep for this brew a day in advance. You need at least 12 hours in hand ahead of the time you need to drink your cold brew coffee.
2. Requires Precision and Practice
Again, brewing a cold brew coffee is an art and science. We need to take care of precise ratios, keep glass jars (or French press) and cup ready to brew and wait overnight to drink the coffee the next day.
This means the process is tedious and requires a lot of patience from the barista. It is not everyone’s cup of joe.
3. More Expensive Than Iced Coffee
If you buy your coffee from the coffee shop, you’ll notice that iced coffee is generally cheaper than cold brew coffees.
Since brewing this coffee is more challenging, cafes tend to charge more for exotic cold brew coffees.
4. More Caffeinated Than Hot Coffee
As we discussed above, a cold brew cup contains more caffeine than your regular coffee. That’s why people too sensitive to caffeine must avoid drinking a lot of this coffee.
People with anxiety and blood pressure issues might also struggle after drinking cold brew coffee.
Cold Brew FAQs
Let us quickly address the most popular queries people might also have regarding cold brew coffees here:
How Many Types of Cold Brew Coffees are There?
There are several other iced coffee methods that we can make with a drip coffee maker or French press.
But while you can prepare and drink your cold brew coffee however you like, popular coffee shops serve them in the following popular ways:
- Nitro Cold Brew
- Almond Milk Cold Brew
- Cold Brew With Cream
- Salted Caramel Cold Brew
Is Cold Brew Healthier Than Iced Coffee?
This depends on the health issues you are facing. If you have blood pressure issues, cold brew can be a bane for your health owing to the higher caffeine amounts.
Otherwise, cold brew can be healthier for people with stomach issues as it is less acidic.
Is Cold Brew A Waste of Coffee?
If you consider one bag of coffee, cold brew will yield lesser brewed coffee from the same when compared to hot brew.
Thus, cold brew coffee might be cost and time inefficient for many. In that, it needs more coffee grounds and time to prepare.
Final Word: Is Cold Brew Better Than Hot Coffee?
This is totally a personal preference. Many people like the bitterness and astringency of regular iced coffee, made by adding ice to coffee brewed hot.
Others enjoy the crisp and clean flavors of a cold brew. Many also claim that they find it to be the least flavorful coffee. Thus, it is a personal taste thing.
Also, consider your health issues before deciding on your drink.