Are you an iced coffee or cold brew person? Or maybe a nitro-coffee enthusiast? Well, I am here to tell you that there is no wrong answer. All of these beverages are delicious in their own ways and will always warm your soul with caffeine on a hot summer day!
You just have to know which one is right for the occasion. Read on to learn about each type of cold coffee so that you can be sure to pick out the perfect beverage next time you head over to your local coffee shop!
Cold brew vs Iced coffee vs Nitro-coffee
So, you want to get yourself a cup of coffee. Maybe it's for the caffeine boost, maybe it's just because you love that delicious taste. Whatever your reason is, there are so many options out there that it can be overwhelming!
You could buy regular brewed coffee and drink it hot...or iced...or cold brew...OR nitro-coffee? What even is nitro-coffee?! It sounds like something Harry Potter would drink, but I'm here to tell you all about this mysterious liquid gold called nitro-coffee so you don't have to go through the same confusion I did.
Grab your favourite mug and let me guide you through all this!
What is cold brew coffee?
Cold brew coffee is an easy-to-brew alternative to iced coffee that produces a less acidic, more concentrated flavor. It's simply hot coffee brewed with room-temp or cold water instead of hot water.
Cold brew can be made in two ways:
1) The "cold steep" method involves mixing room temperature or cold water with coarsely ground coffee and leaving it to brew overnight, typically 12 hours; this method tends to yield coffee with cleaner flavors but doesn't fully extract all of the oils and acids, which gives this coffee its character.
2) The Japanese immersion method involves mixing cold water with finely ground, very fresh coffee then using low heat to maintain just below simmering temperatures for about 3 hours. Full extraction occurs during this time resulting in a robust coffee concentrate, which can be further diluted with hot or cold water. This process tends to produce more balanced, flavorful iced coffee.
You can easily make your own cold brew at home as well if you follow some tips and tricks on how to get it right!
What is nitro cold brew coffee?
Nitro coffee, or "nitro cold brew," is a relatively new trend in the coffee world that has been catching on.
At its most basic, nitro cold brew is simply cold-brewed coffee with nitrogen gas infused into it at the time of serving. Nitrogen doesn't dissolve as readily as CO2 does, so when you pour a glass of nitro coffee, you don't get those little bubbles floating to the top like sparkling water. This is what results in a creamy mouthfeel and beautiful cascading effect.
What are my favorite things about drinking nitro coffee? There are likely many reasons why this drink has become so popular lately: The mild acidity means that there's no tang or bite at all, which makes it a great option for those who don't typically drink coffee.
Also, nitrogen may preserve some of the flavor notes that are often lost when coffee is brewed or served hot. Have you ever had a cup of hot coffee that didn't taste quite right? If the water used wasn't hot enough or if there was too much exposure to oxygen during brewing, then all you can taste is bitterness. Nitrogen doesn't have much surface contact with the coffee, so less flavor will be lost in the transfer compared to other gas or liquid mediums!
What's the difference between cold brew and nitro cold brew?
Cold brew and nitro cold brew both start off by mixing coffee grounds with room temperature or cold water but the similarities end there.
Cold brew is then chilled and served in a tall glass often filled with ice, while nitro cold brew is pressurized with nitrogen gas, infused with tiny nitrogen bubbles, and served on tap like a pint of Guinness .
The other main difference between cold brew and nitro cold brew is that nitro cold brew has a creamy mouth feel like draft beer. This is because heady nitrogen bubbles make up about 70% of what you're drinking, and each sip is less acidic than traditional cold brew. Nitro cold brew has a nice coffee aroma and tastes sweeter than traditional iced coffee.
Nitro cold brew also holds its bubbles longer than draft beer so it doesn't go flat as quickly after being poured. It's best to drink nitro cold brew within 14 days of brewing because oxygen exposure makes it stale more quickly.
What is iced coffee?
Iced coffee is a form of brewed coffee that has been chilled and served with ice cubes. In contrast to iced tea, iced coffee is not usually sweetened. However, some coffee houses use whipped cream in their iced coffee to add a sweet flavor and make the drink more aesthetically pleasing.
The base of an iced coffee is usually an espresso shot of coffee brewed with water at around 192 °F (89.6 °C). The most common types of iced coffee are the iced latte and the iced Americano. An iced latte is a version of iced coffee where cold milk is used instead of ice cubes. The iced Americano is made with a shot of espresso topped with chilled water and ice cubes.
Cold brew vs. Iced coffee
Essentially, their main difference is that iced coffee is made with an espresso shot, while to make a cold brew you need to use the drip coffee method.
Cold brew, on the other hand, takes a long time to prepare, but yields a strong-tasting drink that can be stored in the fridge for up to two weeks. The caffeine content of cold brew is stronger than that of iced coffee, and cold brew still retains the flavour profile of the beans used.
You can add milk in both drinks according to your preference. Both are super refreshing on hot summer's day!
Nitro cold brew vs. Iced coffee
Everyone loves a good iced coffee, but if you're looking for the best of both worlds: creamy, yet loaded with flavours - nitro cold brew is right up your alley. My take on this trendy beverage differs from traditional iced coffee in two ways. First off, it's made using a special cold-brew process, where coffee beans are steeped in cold water for up to 12 hours as opposed to being brewed with hot water.
This results in a creamy and smooth beverage that's less acidic than regular iced coffee. Second, the product is infused with nitrogen gas, resulting in a creamy foam head once it's poured into a glass. The creamy texture and the refreshing flavours of the drink often tempt people into having more than one.
Iced coffee on the other hand, is made using espresso coffee, topped with cold water and ice cubes. It's texture is not creamy but light and if not topped with milk, it can actually bring out a lot of the flavour and aroma attributes of the coffee bean.
As you can see, there are many different types of coffee and it can be difficult to know which one is right for you.
I hope this article has helped clarify the difference between these three popular drinks so that now you can make an informed decision about what type of coffee to drink!