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How to Make Unbelievably Great Cold Brew

Cold brew has become a hot item in specialty coffee shops. And it's easy to understand why: It tastes great!

Premium coffees hold their taste profiles together at a variety of temperatures. They don't "fall apart" as they cool. If you want to test this, order your favorite coffee (preferably in a mug) and sip it. Then, sit and chat. Try it again in 30 minutes, and again in an hour. You'll see what I mean.

Not only will the best coffees not fall apart, but different slices of that coffee's flavor profile will shine at different temperatures.

For instance, if a coffee has berry and citrus notes, let it cool, and see how the balance between those flavors changes likes two girls on a teeter totter. One will peak at the higher temperatures, and other at the lower temperatures.

The simplest way to make iced coffee is to brew a hot pot of coffee and pour it over ice. But that doesn't bring out the most interesting flavors in your cold brew.

Do it like this.

Coarsely grind your favorite coffee. At Nine Flags, we love the way Ethiopia and Costa Rica both make for a mouth tingling cold brew ( 

Now, fill a big jar or pitcher with purified water. Water with high percentages of dissolved solids will mute the coffee. If you don't have pure water at home, buy some at the grocery store; it's cheap! 

What's the water to coffee ratio? 4 cups water to 3/4 cup of coarsely ground coffee. So a gallon of water is 16 cups of coffee. That means if you are using a gallon of water, you would use 3 cups of ground coffee.

Now, here's the important part, wrap the grind securely in cheesecloth. Here's how to do that step by step.

1. Pile your coarse grind in the middle of the cloth. We pour it carefully, right from the bag.


2. Now, hammock the grind, being careful to keep the grounds from escaping out the side.

3. Roll the top sides of the cheese cloth down until it's snug against the grind. But keep your hands up which will keep the grind in the middle of the cloth.


4. Begin to twist the ends to keep the gind securely situated inside the cloth.

5. Notice her thumb which keeps the top down as she twists. 


6. Now tie the two sides together being careful to keep the cloth from opening up as you tie (note the position of her thumb).

7. Finally, finish the knot.

Now that you have the grind securely tied up in the cloth, put it into your pitcher of jug and pour pure, cold water over the bundle. Remember to do this carefully so that no little particulates of grind get it into their minds to swim out of the cloth. In other words, pour slowly.

The last step is to leave it in the fridge for 20 hours. So, if you make it at 4 or 5 in the afternoon, your cold brew will be ready early in the afternoon by the following day.

Because your brew is perfect, just a little ice is all you need. So a few cubes of ice, and pour the delicious brew that you made yourself into the glass and enjoy.

This method retains the sweetest flavor notes of your selected grind and gives you a light refreshing drink.

Nine Flags Coffee Options for making excellent cold brew.