July 3, 2013
It's hot here in Oakland...not as hot as other parts of the country but hot enough to make us crave iced coffee. We thought this would be a good opportunity to try out all those different methods we have been scoping out on different websites and traditional recipes we have done before.
The Drip-From-a-Bottle-Into-an-Aeropress Method
Prima Coffee recently posted an article with a cool cold brew drip tutorial that didn't require an expensive drip brewer. A 1 liter plastic bottle with the bottom cut off and a hole poked into the cap, when turned upside down, serves as the tank in which ice and water are held. You want to make a hole small enough to allow about 40 drops a minute. Use an Aeropress funnel as a holder for the upside-down bottle. This will suspend the bottle on top of a plunger-less Aeropress containing a filter, in it's usual place, ground coffee with a little chicory and another filter (trimmed to fit) on top of the coffee. Use whatever decanter you want. Mason jars and small French press beakers work well. Get ready to sit and stare...it's gonna take a while. A fast dripping bottle takes an hour to fully empty itself. We thought the coffee turned out tea-like and lemony, with a nice mouthfeel and good body. It was surprising how clear many of the tasting notes were and that as a cold coffee, how true to our coffee review it was.
-40g coffee (we used Ethiopia Sidama Deri Kochoha)
Prima Coffee's Aeropress method.
The Syphon-Used-as-a-Cold-Brew-Dripper Method
We tried to replicate some online photos of a pour-over cone on top of syphon as a cool-looking way to drip hot coffee over ice but quickly realized that the airtight nature of a syphon's bowl won't allow liquid to rise above the bottom of the funnel. This resulted in our hot coffee flooding the funnel and quickly melting the ice. Fail. Luckily we aren't quitters and tried again, replacing the syphon bowl with a jar and switching the filter cone with our new friend, an upside down plastic bottle. We placed a trimmed paper on the bed of coffee to help distribute the dripping water. The results were a thin but very refreshing cup with floral notes and sweetness.
-45g ground coffee (we used Kenya Kagumo-ini AB)
The failed syphon method.
Watching and waiting...the improved syphon method
The Let-it-Soak-for-18-Hours Method
Keeping things simple produced great results. We let a half pound of grinds and 5 cups of water sit in a fridge overnight and then filtered the sludge through a Chemex filter. Our iced coffee turned out thick, heavy and intense. There were concentrated notes of dark chocolate brownie w/ raspberries and butterscotch. This would be a great cup to cut with extra ice, a little water, milk or cream. In an identical batch we added some chicory and ended up with similar tastes. It was a little brighter with beer/IPA notes.
-1/2lb coffee (we used Ethiopia Sidama Deri Kochoha)
-5 cups water
-20g chicory (optional)