Cold Brew Coffee – What's It All About?

DENVER, CO - Optimum Wellness Presented by King Soopers, Sponsored by Cold-Brew High Brew Coffee

Author- Dr. James Rouse

Coffee lovers really don’t need to be convinced to consider cold brew coffee, do they? In the broadest sense, coffee is coffee, right? Or is it? Is there a difference between cold brew and traditionally hot brew coffee? As it turns out, there is, but it’s not that big of one.

Coffee has certainly become a beloved beverage here in the States, as it is around the globe. It is appreciated for it’s deep, smoky aroma, it’s bitter, yet creamy taste, and of course for the mental clarity and alertness that one derives from its consumption (and the caffeine). We have learned over the last several years that coffee also has a multitude of possible health benefits due to some of its active constituents including potent antioxidants, caffeine, chlorogenic acid, cafestrol, and melanoidins. Population studies have linked coffee consumptions to such health benefits as prevention of chronic degenerative diseases like cancer, dementia, type 2 diabetes, and heart disease.

While the benefits of coffee consumption hold true for both cold brew and hot brew coffees, there are a few qualities that stand out with cold brew coffee. Cold brew coffee requires a much longer steeping time compared to hot-brew. You begin with coarse ground, roasted coffee beans, and filtered water. A recommended ratio is about 1 part ground coffee to 4 parts filtered water. Place the grounds and coffee in a glass container (a mason jar or French press work quite well). Allow the grounds to “steep” for about twelve to fourteen hours.  Make sure the grounds are fully saturated in the water. If you’ve used a French press, you can then press the grounds to the bottom of the container and your coffee will be ready. If you used a mason jar then you will need to filter out the grounds by pouring the mixture into a typical coffee filter and allowing the liquid to pass through, or use cheese cloth or other fine mesh to filter the coffee.

Cold brew coffee appears to be less acidic (therefore easier on the stomach and the tooth enamel) than hot brew coffee. Lower acid actually gives the coffee a sweeter flavor so less or no sweetener may be desired.  Many people would describe the flavor of cold brew as “smoother.”

Some research suggests that the antioxidant content of cold brew coffee may be higher compared to hot brew. Certainly more research is forthcoming as the popularity of cold brew continues to increase. Until that time, you truly can’t go wrong. Give cold brew a try and draw your own conclusion.

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