On a hot summer day, coffee is not likely at the forefront of anyone’s mind. Most consider it a warm beverage meant only for morning caffeination. However, here at Baba Java, we have the privilege of offering cold brew iced coffee that is perfect for a hot summer afternoon. Cold brew coffee can come in all shapes and sizes; it can be served to the customer’s personal palate. Whether that be black, with cream and sugar, nitro-infused, or even as a Japanese cold brew, cold brewed coffee is a perfect summer drink (or even winter if that’s what you like).
Cold brew coffee sounds like a very simple concept. It’s just cold coffee, right? Maybe the hot coffee sat out for a little too long, so you reuse it as cold coffee? Cold brewed coffee is actually its own drink. It is made with a special brewing method that uses a lower temperature of water in order to extract coffee in a way that will bring out its best tasting notes when served cold. Traditionally this kind of brew takes several hours. This means that most of the time, the price of having delicious cold brew coffee is hours of preparation. The traditional way of making cold brew is letting a coarse ground coffee sit in either cold or room temperature water overnight or for at least twelve hours. Here at Baba Java we have started using a newer method of “cold” brewing our coffee. But before we look to our present, it would be helpful to peer into cold brew coffee’s rich past.
Cold brewed coffee is a relatively new method of brewing coffee to the United States as it has only become very popular here over the past decade or so. The popularity of cold brew has surged alongside the recent rise in specialty coffee. Although we have only recently been introduced to this brewing method, cold brewed coffee is actually goes back to the mid-1600s in Japan. Rather than submerging coffee grounds in cold water for hours and hours, they would allow one drop of water to fall upon a bed of grounds at a time. This process would still take several hours, but instead of grounds in big tubs of water, the Japanese constructed extravagant towers to be the vessel of their brewing method. These towers are known as Kyoto Towers and can be found in many cafés today. The Japanese made both their towers and their coffee into a form of art, which we have the privilege of enjoying today. After traders tried this brilliant Japanese cold brew, they began concocting different cold brew methods which led to what we know as cold brew today. Here at Baba Java we have begun using even newer methods of brewing coffee at cooler temps, which make it more efficient and even allows for more control over the details of the brew.
In our shop we use our Ground Control batch brew machine to make our cold brew. We are the only shop in Birmingham that has a Ground Control machine and one of two in Alabama that uses this revolutionary machine. The Ground Control is revolutionizing batch brew specialty coffee. We are able to control the smallest details in order to make a perfect brew. We make our cold brew coffee at a warmer temperature than the traditional method, but at a lower temperature than our batch brew coffee. Brewing the coffee at a warmer temperature allows us to keep the complexity and character of each origin while a traditional cold brew method mutes the richer and earthier flavors of the coffee. The longer method of brewing is more ideal for sweeter fruitier coffees, whereas the Ground Control is able to bring out the flavors for all kinds of coffees. This allows us to have more variety and to offer the best coffee fit for cold brew. With the Ground Control we are also able to bring out more sweetness and less acidity which is perfect for a nice cold brew. Perhaps the biggest reason we use our Ground Control rather than a traditional method is the speed and ease of the process. Rather than a twelve-hour brewing time, we can brew a batch of cold brew in 7 minutes and have it ready to be served in 30 minutes once it cools.
Though we believe that the more traditional ways of cold brew are great and can make great coffee, we love the Ground Control for its efficiency user friendliness. It is the best of both worlds. It allows us to simultaneously make better cold brew with extreme ease with almost no labor. With all the time we save making cold brew in this way, we are able to put more thought into the best coffees for our cold brew.
We are always experimenting with recipes and other coffees to try on cold brew. We just recently began experimenting with our Yemen coffee on cold brew and its results are divine. The Yemen’s natural dried fruit notes are enhanced when on cold brew, and even more so as a Nitro-infused cold brew. In the future we hope to offer other options for cold brew as we continue to search for other coffees that taste amazing.
Now that you know all about cold brew, come enjoy a cup on this hot summer day! We promise you will not regret it. Here at Baba Java we offer both a Nitro-infused cold brew and a regular cold brew, both of which are the perfect cure to beat the heat.
No matter if you are brewing for one person or fifty, from pour over to drip machine to French press, and for any coffee type, there is one factor that is more important than any other. It’s the thing that happens after the perfect cup of coffee is enjoyed.
The big secret to making great coffee is...cleaning!
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