With so many different ways to make coffee it can sometimes get confusing. Names sound similar, the smallest adjustment in ingredients can change the entire drink, and there’s new ones popping up every single day.
One of the biggest confusions comes from cold brew coffee and iced coffee. Their names signify that they are both a colder coffee drink (as opposed to traditional coffee which is warm), but are they actually very different drinks.
What is the Difference Between Cold Brew Coffee and Iced Coffee?
With large coffee chains pumping out different types of coffee drinks in record numbers, there’s no doubt that we’ve been exposed to more ways to make coffee than ever before.
This is great for those who don’t necessarily like traditional coffee as it gives them the opportunity to try different recipes, different types of coffee, and different methods of preparation.
Cold brew coffee and iced coffee are two of those types of coffee that have been pushed into the mainstream by these coffee chains and the public has really taken a liking to them.
But what is the difference between these two types of coffee?
Iced coffee is exactly what it sounds like. It’s any regular brewed coffee served over ice. This type of coffee is much faster to make than Cold Brew Coffee, but the ice can slowly water down your drink over time. To combat this, it’s best to cool down your coffee before you pour it over the ice, so that the ice doesn’t melt as quickly when touching the hot liquid.
While iced coffee is a lot quicker to make than cold brew coffee, it does have a more bitter and acidic taste to it and does not taste great after the first day. This is the type of coffee you make, or buy, if you’re looking for a nice cold refreshing drink to start your morning. It’s easy, fast, and simple. It’s also a lot cheaper than cold brew if you’re picking it up from a coffee shop.
Cold Brew Coffee
Cold Brew Coffee is a bit more advanced than just pouring coffee over ice. It involves a different method of preparation and takes much longer to brew than iced coffee.
To make cold brew, the coarse coffee grounds are steeped in cold water for between 12-24 hours. The longer you leave the coffee steeping the stronger it’s going to taste, so if you don’t like your coffee too strong, then 12 hours would be our recommendation.
Once you have waited the desired time, you then filter out the coffee grounds and are left with a coffee concentrate that you can then mix with milk or water to desired taste. You can also serve this drink over ice if you wish, which would then make this a Cold Brew Iced Coffee.
Cold brew generally has a less acidic and less bitter taste than iced coffee because you’re not using heat to brew the coffee, instead you’re using time. When you use heat you extract oils from the coffee beans which can cause your cup of coffee to be more acidic and have a more bitter taste.
Cold brew coffee also tends to have higher levels of caffeine than traditional coffee because of the amount of time you are allowing the coffee grounds to steep in the water. It also requires twice as much coffee grounds to make a cup of cold brew than it would a cup of traditional or iced coffee.
Iced Coffee vs. Cold Brew Coffee
While the names are very similar, iced coffee and cold brew coffee are very different. Iced coffee is any coffee that you pour and serve over ice, while cold brew coffee uses time to extract the coffee flavoring instead of heat and can take up to 24 hours to make.
Cold brew coffee can be iced coffee if you pour it over ice, but any other iced coffee cannot be considered cold brew.
Whatever the method, using 100% pure Kona coffee beans will elevate any cup of coffee. The flavors of Kona coffee cannot be reproduced anywhere else in the world due to the unique nature of the soil and climate of Kona, Hawaii.
So if you really want to elevate your next cup, please check out our shop and order some 100% Kona Coffee.