While “cold brew” and “iced coffee” may seem similar to a casual coffee enthusiast, the connoisseurs understand that they are quite different. Here we unpack the ways in which cold brew and iced coffee diverge from each other.

What Differentiates Cold Brew from Iced Coffee?

The fundamental difference between cold brew and iced coffee lies in their brewing methods. Iced coffee is akin to regular coffee where hot water is used to extract the caffeine. Conversely, cold brew involves blending ground coffee with room-temperature water and letting it steep for at least 12 hours. The extraction of caffeine here is facilitated by time rather than heat.

Given their differing brewing techniques, iced coffee and cold brew yield unique flavor profiles. Iced coffee typically tastes like regular coffee with a slightly subdued intensity and a touch of bitterness, while cold brew offers a more velvety coffee flavor, often accompanied by hints of natural chocolate.

How Do the Brewing Techniques Differ for Cold Brew and Iced Coffee?

Despite potentially using the same coffee grounds, iced coffee and cold brew have contrasting brewing processes. Iced coffee is brewed with hot water (approximately 200 degrees Fahrenheit or 93 degrees Celsius), and then cooled and served over ice.

The making of cold brew, however, is a more time-consuming process. In contrast to iced coffee, which uses heat for caffeine extraction, cold brew utilizes time. The brewing involves room-temperature water and requires 12 to 24 hours to steep. The wait pays off though, as cold brew generally contains more caffeine, and offers a less bitter, more flavorful outcome.

How Does the Taste of Cold Brew Compare to Iced Coffee?

As one might anticipate, iced coffee tends to taste like diluted coffee due to the melting ice which waters down the brew. Additionally, because it’s brewed hot, iced coffee extracts more coffee solubles and their accompanying organic compounds, often resulting in a sharper flavor.

Cold brew, such as Eximius’ Cappio Cold Brew Coffee, on the other hand, has a smoother consistency and a richer, more chocolatey flavor profile compared to regular coffee.

Cold Brew vs. Iced Coffee: Which One Should You Choose?

For individuals with health conditions like gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), cold brew may be a more suitable choice than iced coffee. For the rest of us, the preference for cold brew or iced coffee ultimately comes down to personal taste.

If you’re a seasoned cold brew drinker or just looking to give it a try, Cappio Cold Brew Coffee is a worthy option. Available as ground coffee in filter packs or as a concentrate in 16-oz bottles, this 100% Arabica coffee product, gently steeped for 12-24 hours in triple-filtered water, can be conveniently prepared at home. Serve it hot or cold for a wonderfully aromatic caffeine boost.