The Cold Brew Craze
You may have turned your attention to this article thinking the topic was beer. And for those who have not hear about "Cold Brew" in context of the coffee industry, you must have been asleep at the wheel for awhile and in need of the very caffeine that this beverage provides. After all, cold brew coffee has rocked the industry, and has demonstrated a staying power that elevates this product to here-to-stay status. So what is it? And why is it such a big deal?
Understanding cold brew starts with discovering its distinctions from traditional iced coffee. Whereas traditional iced coffee is brewed hot just like its warm beverage counterpart, and is then "flash chilled" after the brewing sequence is complete, cold brew coffee is steeped like tea but by using ambient water over a longer period of time, resulting in highly perceivable difference in flavor profile. But why?
When hot water is used to brew coffee, all of the flavor is captured from the sourced bean, but so is all of the acidity of that bean. Because water is denser the cooler it is, the tempered water used in the cold brewing process is able to capture the flavor of the bean as well, but not all the acidity. Thus, the denser water inhibits acid absorption, resulting in a virtually acid-free version of traditional iced coffee.
Reports from the field have even included new coffee drinkers who, because of severe acid reflux, were unable to drink traditional iced coffee, but can now partake of cold brew without fear of debilitating discomfort. It's a game-changer.
Now, for the old-school coffee drinker, their excitement is mitigated, as they report missing out on the "bite" when consuming cold brew. That bite is the acidity in traditional iced coffee. Some consumers want that, but most don't miss it, and in fact, enjoy its absence. That's why cold brew has captured a whole new coffee-consuming market.
But the cold brew difference doesn't stop with the brewing process. Nitro cold brew has also captured the hearts of coffee connoisseurs. Simply put, nitro is the coffee version of Guinness. Using the same base cold brew product packaged in 5-gallon kegs, we infuse the keg with nitrogen gas at a high pressure, creating a creamy consistency that gives the mouthfeel of milk or cream. The result is delicious.
In 2019, How You Brewin capitalized on the cold brew craze by expanding their Surf City location to add an open-air production area, giving it a micro-brewery feel. We not only service our two locations through that production space, but we have the privilege of partnering with other local brands to provide them with their cold brew and nitro cold brew via a wholesale relationship. We've recently even added a canned version - perfect to fill coolers on beach days. We also offer seasonal flavors of cold brew year-round: Caramel Kiss near Valentine's Day, Hawaiian Hazelnut in the summertime, Peppermint Bark around the holidays.
Still not sure about the whole craze? Consider trying a How You Brewin "Cold Flight" Which provides four 5 ounce samplings of our cold brew, nitro, flavored cold brew and iced coffee. By the end, you'll have your go-to narrowed down for next time.