Greetings and welcome to our blog. This is both the first blog post and first blog I have attempted…so go easy on me.
The idea behind this blog is to introduce you to ourselves and our business, share some incites we have learned on our journey and introduce you to the ways of cold brew coffee. All this with the hopes that you start your own journey and end up loving it as much as we do!
THE BIRTH OF A BUSINESS
Ideas and inspiration can come from many places, for me though, I find the best ones come via reading and running. The concept of cold brew was first introduced to me (and Daniel) while reading a fictional book written by Cory Doctorow called Homeland.
The description and explanation was just a couple of paragraphs but the words clearly resonated with me enough to spark a discussion with Daniel. The results of which lead us on a path to trying our hands at making cold brew.
To say we were ill prepared for this initial excursion is an understatement. We decided to go away for a long weekend with one of the planned activities to make cold brew. We had coffee beans (at least) but did not think to bring something to grind them. Not being people to give up so easily, various methods were attempted to break up the beans. We finally settled on putting the beans in a plastic container and crushing them with a glass measuring jug. Comical yet effective. We left the beans steeping for well over 48 hours (what I believe now to be way too long).
I would be lying to you if I told you it was the best thing I had ever tasted and it changed my life there and then. The experience and flavours that came through were new and exciting which was more than enough to spark curiosity and further experimentation.
So, what started as mere words in a book lead us on a journey to start this venture. Cold brew coffee and coffee in general has long since become more than just words, it is now a way of life…a source of much joy.
BRIEF HISTORY OF COLD BREW COFFEE
Through my many hours of scouring the internet I came across an article on the guardian website which I thinks covers the origins quite nicely. It basically says that cold brew dates to around the 1600s. It is thought that Dutch traders developed the idea of cold brewing to transport large quantities of portable coffee, which later they would reheat or serve cold. One day these traders ended up on the shores of Japan and exposed the Japanese to this method of production. This communion gave birth to what we know today as the Kyoto style or slow drip cold brew.
Fast forward a couple centuries and it appears that cold brewing is becoming more and more popular. The Kyoto style system and immersion systems are starting to pop up in quite a few places. I would not say that it is quite mainstream just yet but it is certainly becoming more popular. To me this invokes a sense of excitement as it is indicative of an increase in cold brew culture and exposure to the world.
WHAT IS COLD BREW COFFEE?
Cold brew is like a flavour punch to the face. It will often be described as “strong” which is generally confused by most to mean “bitter”. I think one of the most surprising things about cold brew is that, yes, it is strong, but the flavours that come through are not bitter and highly acidic but rather sweet and pleasant. Giving to me what I would describe as a very clean taste which leaves a very pleasant and lingering aftertaste at the back of the throat. In fact, I find the more you drink the better that aftertaste gets, which can stay with you for quite some time.
Ok, so now that I have described what it means to me, let me give you the basic definition. Pretty much what the term infers, it’s coffee brewed only with cold water. By following this process and not exposing it to heat, you avoid extracting certain acids from your beans. Making good coffee in my opinion is an art, whether producing it hot or cold, and if not done right will result in the coffee tasting bitter and extremely unpleasant. The upside of cold brew though is that it tends to be much more forgiving.
There are two methods that can be used to cold brew; immersion cold brew and slow drip cold brew (also known as Kyoto style cold brew). Personally, I have never used the slow drip method but have tasted cold brew made that way. Still delicious. As mentioned in the ‘Brief history’ there are numerous brands to choose from, so really it all comes down to your own preferences. We will be dealing with how to make cold brew and some equipment suggestions in a future post.
We have now arrived at the end of this post. That was a lot harder than expected but I made it through. All I can hope is by you reading this it will inspire you to go out and at least try making some cold brew for yourself…or if you are too lazy just buy some of ours.
http://craphound.com/homeland/download/ (Check out the website for free downloads of all of Cory Doctorow’s books)