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Friday, May 31, 2013

238

This Summer: Stop Buying $5 Iced Coffees

It is summer. It is hot. Tomorrow is the first day of June, which means that you're contractually obligated to consume only cold beverages. Can I get you something to drink?

ICED COFFEE

While the subject of iced coffee preparation is somewhat controversial, I am unafraid to come down squarely on the side of the cold brew preparation. Living in New Orleans made this my jam. Cold-brewed coffee (and tea) is less acidic, smoother, hella strong, and you don’t heat up your kitchen to make it. I also use way less sugar in cold-brewed iced coffee.

Now, you can buy a Toddy coffee maker or whatever, but that is not actually necessary. I once made a cold-brew concentrate in a Ziploc bag and brought it along on a road trip in a cooler. That was rad. It can be kind of messy, what with all the grounds, but if you have a French press, you do not have a problem.

You will need:

- A French press, if you have one. If not, you need some sort of glass, plastic, or stainless steel jar or pitcher or bowl with a lid. You will also need a fine-mesh strainer (or even a colander lined with paper towels).

- Coffee, coarsely ground (like a French press grind, if you use one at home)

- Water

- This Times recipe uses a ratio of one ounce of coffee : five ounces of water, so if you have a four-cup French press, you’d use 6.5 oz of coffee, or 3/4 cup + a skosh. (This is an inexact science, obviously.) Scale up or down accordingly. If you want to use an entire pound of coffee (and end up with eight cups of coffee concentrate, which will keep for two weeks in your refrigerator), use 10 cups of water.

Put the ground coffee and the water in your container. Don’t push the French press’s plunger down, if you’re using one. Refrigerate 8-12 hours, then strain, either with your French press or with your strainer. Now you have a concentrate that you can dilute with water and/or milk.

To serve, use 1/4 cup concentrate to 3/4 cup milk or water. (Extra milk makes it creamy-delicious, but also compounds the coffee poos, if you’re the sort who is susceptible to them.)

ICED TEA

Listen up, America. Nostalgia kills. Stop with the “sun tea.” Get rid of your sun tea. It is revolting. That shit is crawling with bacteria because the temperature of water heated au naturel (about 130 degrees) does not get high enough to actually kill bacteria (195 degrees). I mean, you’re into whatever you’re into, but Alcaligenes viscolactis causes “gastric upset, diarrhea, and other flu-like symptoms.” Not a good look for summer. Cold-brew that shit instead, sister.

You will need:

- Some sort of tea-brewing vessel that has a lid to keep fridge smells out of your beverage (a jar or a pitcher, or even a bowl with a plate over it, will do).

- 1-2 tea bags (or 1-2 teaspoons of loose tea) per eight ounces of water

Put the tea bags in the water, obviously. Refrigerate anywhere from 4-12 hours! Green and white teas need less time than black teas.

What might you add to your tea? Ideas: sliced ginger, fruit (citrus peels, berries, anything sliced, lychee), cucumbers, herbs (muddled or chiffonaded lavender or mint, maybe even ROSEMARY?), spices (think chai: cinnamon sticks, vanilla beans, cloves, lightly crushed cardamom pods, black peppercorns). After brewing, you can add sweetener or juice (or make an Arnold Palmer).

SIMPLE SYRUP

Use simple syrup and you won’t end up with gritty sugar at the bottom of your cup (unless you're into that sort of thing).

You will need:

- A small-to-medium saucepan

- 1 cup sugar

- 1 cup water

Combine sugar and water. Boil, stirring frequently, until sugar dissolves. Let cool and bottle for storage.

This will last two weeks in your refrigerator, unless you add a skosh of vodka as a preservative, in which case it will last a little longer.

That was delicious. And yes, I’d be thrilled if you washed the glasses.

Photo via ks_marks/flickr.

Simone Eastman is a cat lady. She thinks you are perfect and beautiful.

238 Comments / Post A Comment

Anne Helen Petersen

I REALLY LIKE THIS ICED COFFEE RECIPE SIMONE but GIRL come home so we can write about Lauryn Hill

Judith Slutler

@Anne Helen Petersen UM YES

SIMONE GET YR BOOTY HOME

simone eastbro

@Judith Slutler y'all and my cat need me, so kind of can't wait

jams

Keep it up. Keep blogging. Great stuff, worth reading. Thanks for sharing! Seo Service Barcelona

jams

Rock and Roll Ken Doll Boston, but the tea drinkers in my family are also super germaphobes, so that probably has something to do with it. does highster mobile work

jams

I have on hand. The dark roast from my fave coffee roaster (Metropolis) is WAY WAY dark, so I can go with something in the middle. Weight loss drops

jamsbond

Put the ground coffee and the water in your container. Don’t push the French press’s plunger down, if you’re using one.

is bubblegum casting legitimate

jams

We originate a actually well-familiar restaurant giving baked furthermore and barbequed beef's appendage. Weight loss drops

jamsbond

Your website is good, but you let Spammer throw everything on your page

is bubblegum casting legitimate

pollypeachum

I had never even heard of sun tea before I read this and now that I have, I'm glad that has never seemed to be a thing where I live.

Rock and Roll Ken Doll

@pollypeachum
Query where you lived?

professionalmess

@pollypeachum Don't even listen to these lies. Sun tea for life.

pollypeachum

@Rock and Roll Ken Doll Boston, but the tea drinkers in my family are also super germaphobes, so that probably has something to do with it.

up cubed

@pollypeachum: Yea, I don't get the hate, unless you're using stream water or something. It should be sanitary if you use tap water.

Rock and Roll Ken Doll

@pollypeachum
Interesting! I grew up in central Pa. and my mother made it every week in the summer.

chevyvan

@pollypeachum I grew up in Texas with sun tea. We drank it all summer. Maybe if you have some kind of compromised immune system don't drink it? Otherwise, I'm sorry, but it's not reasonable to heat up your house with boiling water for tea when it's 103 degrees outside. Just make the sun tea.

Amphora

Does cold-brewing tea improve the taste?
I've been pouring my cold-brew coffee through a regular filter but it takes FOREVER (like two whole minutes). Refrigerating it might be a good idea, too.

cosmia

@Amphora It kind of makes the taste more mellow and a bit sweeter? Tea releases more tannins when its boiled, which makes tea strong and sometimes bitter if you leave it for too long. I like my tea strong strong strong, so it doesn't necessarily improve the taste for me, but if you like iced tea that's light and sweet than you'll like cold brewed tea.

Amphora

@cosmia I've got a ton of old black tea sitting around - time to buy some pitchers. And maybe a bigger fridge.

lora.bee

Seriously though...the coffee poos. Whyyyy.

(Whoops, sorry to be TMI)

Judith Slutler

@lora.bee ///TMI ALERT ///

and then there are those of us who rely on coffee to make us poo

///END TMI///

the roughest toughest frail

@lora.bee The one time I made cold-brew coffee with extra milk, I turned into Ben from Parks and Rec.
"The coffee ... betrayed me."

lora.bee

@the roughest toughest frail This sums up my feelings completely. How can something so delicious be so mean to me later??

RK Fire

@lora.bee This is why I stopped drinking delicious, delicious chai lattes... :(

SarcasticFringehead

@lora.bee Today I have extra-stinky coffee farts (possibly compounded by eating cheese and crackers for dinner last night?). So that's fun.

lora.bee

@SarcasticFringehead The worst is period poos + coffee poos. That week really makes me question whoever decided to build our bathroom down a long hall.

Nocs

@lora.bee My office is right across from the bathroom here. I can smell when people have had extra coffee. I DID NOT SIGN UP FOR THIS.

thebestjasmine

@Judith Slutler I had to give up coffee recently, and...it's making the poo thing difficult. Coffee, I miss you so much.

SarcasticFringehead

@thebestjasmine I was thinking of doing that after I finish my thesis, and I was thinking about what would happen if I also stopped eating my daily yogurt. Would I just never poop again?

vonrouge

@lora.bee Wait wait wait this is blowing my mind. It's the EXTRA MILK in the coffee that gives coffee poos? What? How did I, milkiest coffee drinker in the land, never know this? Do black-coffee drinkers not suffer c-poos?!

Ham Snadwich

@lora.bee - Nah. I drink my coffee black as death. Same effect.

lora.bee

@vonrouge @Ham Snadwich Yup, I am also a black coffee drinker, and am plagued by the c-poos.

red pen

@lora.bee the caffeine is what does it to me (same effect with caffeine pills)--and it's a great, cheap, gentle laxative for when you get all constipated from long airline flights!

harebell

@thebestjasmine

butbutbut... coffee is a health drink!

think of all the antioxidants! (that's what my mother always told me!) :)

the angry little raincloud

@lora.bee Since we are all sharing in this particular thread: I recently was wondering if, perhaps, milk was doing something to me, digestive-wise. (I use milk for no other purpose than coffee.) So, I've been doing this experiment-- going on 3 weeks now-- of drinking coffee black. I haven't cut out cheese, yoghurt, ice cream, or other dairy.

It's made a difference.

vonrouge

@lora.bee @Ham Snadwich That's what I thought. Tis a plague indeed.

frigwiggin

I just started cold-brewing tea--only rooibos so far, but I want to try oolong or something next. The rooibos has come out delicious every time!

frigwiggin

Also good for a summer drink is ginger-cucumber water; simmer a slice of ginger in water for 5-10 minutes, let cool, fill up a pitcher with cold water, add the ginger water and some cucumber slices, and let sit overnight. I love many variations of this with lemon and herbs, too. (Although I hate every recipe that refers to it as "sassy water" and/or touts its impurity-flushing properties.)

Judith Slutler

@frigwiggin Ooo I need to try this! I drank mineral water with cucumber and fresh mint all summer last year. (also good with vodka)

cosmia

@frigwiggin Green tea is super delicious cold brewed too, especially sweeter green teas like Japanese senchas. White tea is also yummy, and a little sweeter than green teas, but way more understated. It's nice if you just want a lightly flavoured water.

Rosebudddd

@frigwiggin How much water do you use to simmer the ginger in?

frigwiggin

@Rosebudddd Two cups! For better reference, here's the "recipe" I use.

Nutmeg

@frigwiggin Yesterday at my Sandwich Job my coworker made me some icy cucumber water with a splash of lime, and it was the tastiest thing. I don't even really like cucumber but I drank it all, ate my cuke chunks, then made myself another (my Sandwich Job is so very hot)

Judith Slutler

OK friends of cold brewed coffee - does it really taste better/different? I currently just make myself a french press full o' coffee in the morning and drink the rest of it with ice cubes and milk (no sugar) when I get home in the afternoon.

muddgirl

@Judith Slutler Yeahh, I will cop to the fact that I take regular old drip coffee out of our Mr. Coffee, pour it over a cup full of ice, and call it good. It's a bit bitter (I'm guessing that cold-brewing cuts a lot of the bitterness), but that's kind of refreshing in it's own way.

celeec4@twitter

@Judith Slutler Cold-brewed coffee cuts a lot of the bitter/acidic tastes. For me, there's the additional, not a morning person thing, and after scalding myself via French press accidents in the morning one too many time...I can handle pouring out coffee concentrate and milk in the morning, and that's about it.

Valley Girl

@muddgirl @Judith Slutler Freeze that hot coffee gone cold to make ice cubes for your properly cold brewed.

meetapossum

@Valley Girl Also use coffee ice cubes for whiskey.

LJ6000

@Judith Slutler I tried it for the first time today, and I was surprised by how good it was. Definitely tasted better than regular, I thought. My concentrate came out kind of weak though so I need to make it stronger next time (maybe a coarser ground?), as it was I pretty much drank the concentrate with a splash of almond milk.

grizzle_bees

@meetapossum WHOA. WHAT. I...am speechless. And furious that I have three more hours of work to get through before I can go home and do this.

Judith Slutler

@meetapossum !!!

Lily Rowan

@Judith Slutler I guess I like the acid/bitterness of coffee, because I really don't care for cold brew.

meetapossum

You can used them in any delicious booze that you would usually use for coffee! Put coffee cubes in amaretto! Put coffee cubes in Bailey's! Put coffee cubes in Qream!

grizzle_bees

@meetapossum Coffee...qubes?

fondue with cheddar

@meetapossum Don't you mean Qoffee Qubes?

meetapossum

@fondue with cheddar You guys are more on top of things than I am today. That's the second (seqond?) Qream spelling opportunity I've missed.

grizzle_bees

@fondue with cheddar OMG SAMESIES

anachronistique

@Judith Slutler I can't really drink hot coffee without sugar, but I can drink cold brew without any at all.

fondue with cheddar

@shart_attack *hi-five*

whizz_dumb

@Judith Slutler I am with the author on this. Cold brew is noticeably less acidic, therefore, smoooootherrrrrr. I have made a few batches that were very tasty upon first sips (no heartburn) and then *boom* I'm jacked, also incredibly strong.

This is my new username

@whizz_dumb Yes, cold-brew coffee is way easier on my tummy because it is less acidic.

Lucienne

Ugh, I can't wait for summer to be over so people stop trying to talk me into hot drinks served cold.

frigwiggin

@Lucienne What, you don't find a Cold Toddy refreshing?

Lucienne

@frigwiggin Okay, okay, I'll make an exception for whiskey sours.

thebestjasmine

@Lucienne Preach. Both iced coffee and iced tea are repulsive. Can no one make lemonade anymore? That is the best summer drink, people.

cosmia

I GUESS THE PIN HAS NO NEED FOR A RESIDENT TEA LADY NOW :(

seriously though, sun tea is revolting and its so incredibly easy to cold brew tea so what are you waiting for?

frigwiggin

@cosmia No, we still need you! There are questions besides cold-brewing for you to tackle, surely!

fondue with cheddar

@cosmia I hereby second the vote for you as our Resident Tea Lady.

par_parenthese

@cosmia Thirded. Motion passed.

simone eastbro

@cosmia no no please don't worry, i am not at all interested in being the resident tea lady, you're safe, i just wanted to write about cold brewed summer drank!

EpWs

I just realized I have lemon simple syrup in my fridge. It was in there for cakes but it will now be in there for tea. TEA.

MmeLibrarian

1. Brew mug of hot black tea. Add milk and sugar.

2. Forget about it for a while.

3. Stick it in the fridge.

4. Enjoy. So good.

spanglepants

@MmeLibrarian NO! I cannot.

RubeksCube

Simple syrup is also amazing when you add one actual vanilla bean, and possibly some orange slices...okay, okay, we do this at my house for cocktail purposes, but come ON, how can that not be good???

Shara

@RubeksCube Hm, orange slices. That would be really good in an old fashioned. I tried simmering my simple syrup with rhubarb and vanilla last week, and combined with some gin and club soda (and maybe lemon?), it made the loveliest pink summer drink.

cosmia

@RubeksCube I MADE SIMPLE SYRUP INFUSED WITH LAVENDER BLOSSOMS ONCE AND IT WAS INCREDIBLE

RubeksCube

@Shara That's exactly what I use it for! I have a big air-tight container that I stick all of it in and pop in the fridge. That way I can also add an actual slice of orange to the old fashioned.
Also, that sounds like an AMAZING drink. I love rhubarb. And gin.

grizzle_bees

@cosmia Lavender-vanilla simple syrup. I have some chilling in me fridge that I am going to add sparkling wine to this weekend. Come over!

grizzle_bees

@shart_attack AAAAND thai basil-lemon syrup for whiskey smashes and vodka gimlets.

RubeksCube

@cosmia OMG YES

discombobulated

@RubeksCube yes! I went on a syrup making kick last weekend and now have ginger, cherry, cardamom, mint, rosemary, pineapple, and rhubarb. I have no idea how I'll use them all before they go bad, so you're all invited to my place for cocktails.

grizzle_bees

@discombobulated Combine the cardamom syrup with some rosewater for Turkish coffee.

Judith Slutler

@discombobulated Cardamom syrup? Be still my heart.

wait do you think cumin syrup would work if I made it with whole cumin

RubeksCube

@Judith Slutler Why not? At worst you've wasted some sugar, but at best you've discovered an amazing new thing to add to tequila!
I am such a lush...
@discombobulated I feel like 'Pinners would have the best cocktail parties.

Jinxie

@shart_attack Another herby option: ROSEMARY simple syrup. Makes THE BEST lemonade (which is, in turn, improved by the addition of vodka or gin).

Amphora

@Jinxie So basically you could use any leftover fresh herbs to make syrup? Like parsley syrup for Bloody Marys?

Jinxie

@Amphora Yes! Though I'm not sure I'd want to put simple syrup in a Bloody Mary. But I am a big fan of herby/almost savory cocktails. Parsley simple syrup in something with gin would be a pretty fantastic summer drink.
And if you wanted to add a parsley flavor to your Bloody Mary you could also try just infusing some vodka with it. I made horseradish vodka and jalapeno vodka for New Years Day Bloodies a few years ago and it really took the drinks to the next level.

discombobulated

@shart_attack Oh, yum! I hope my Trader Joe's has rose water.
@Judith Slutler I don't know, but you could try it! Maybe toast the cumin seeds in the dry pan for a minute before you add water? They get a nice, nutty aroma when they're toasted.

grizzle_bees

@Jinxie Oooh, ooh, infused boozes! I made jalepeno tequila for strawberry-jalepeno margs once. Infusing is the best. Just put some shit in some liquid shit and let it sit for a while and BOOM, deliciousness.

grizzle_bees

@RubeksCube Yeah, who's the organizer in this gaggle of lushes? Get on it!

Amphora

@Jinxie And speaking of infused vodkas have you ever tried Ginger Libation? I haven't seen it in the midwest but it's fantastic.

Amphora

@Amphora Also I am writing ALL of these down for an improptu Summer Drinking Project.

Shara

@shart_attack I think I'll try out putting shit in some liquid shit this weekend-- jalapeno tequila sounds like a good place to start.

Valley Girl

I've been perfecting my cold brew iced coffee over the last few months! You are right on the money, Ms. Eastman. I would add that I've found that using dark roasted beans is advisable to avoid ending up with brown coffee-hinted water. My next goal is to figure out Thai iced coffee.

I also make a vanilla simple syrup by using about half water/half homemade vanilla extract (split vanilla beans kept in a jar topped off with whatever clear or brown booze on hand). It really ~kicks it up a notch~

celeec4@twitter

@Valley Girl The trick to Thai iced coffee is probably to figure out what brand of condensed milk your favorite Thai iced coffee place uses. Think that getting a strong brew of some very dark coffee should be pretty easy, but mmm, what brand of condensed milk to us?

chevyvan

@Valley Girl I'm not sure where I got my original iced coffee recipe, but it suggested using beans made especially for espresso, so that would definitely go along with your dark roast suggestion. I tend to make it with whatever I have on hand. The dark roast from my fave coffee roaster (Metropolis) is WAY WAY dark, so I can go with something in the middle.

sam.i.am

Will this work OK with my metal French press?

Seriously, though, the glass French presses are just an explosion waiting to happen.

Jizzcliner

@sam.i.am It really works well with anything. I think it works best if you actually use a paper filter at the end. The fine particles that a french press misses make it taste a bit bitter, at least to my taste.

simone eastbro

@sam.i.am it should be fine because it's probably stainless steel, which is nonreactive.

meetapossum

But seriously, where are you getting your iced coffee that it costs $5?

highfivesforall

@meetapossum Yeah, I bought an iced coffee at an independent shop in the frikkin' west village the other day, and it was only $2.50 - who is charging $5??

bitzyboozer

@meetapossum I guess it depends on whether you're actually just getting regular coffee over ice or a somewhat fancier iced latte type deal. But I would say $3-$3.50 is average at coffee shops around here, and after tipping the better part of a fiver is gone.

meetapossum

@bitzyboozer Huh. I live in NYC and I don't think I usually spend around $2.50 as well, even at the good fancy places. But I just get plain ol' iced coffee, so who knows?

redheaded&crazy

@meetapossum seriously! MCDONALD'S DOLLAR DAYS PEOPLE.

(I realize I live in a different coffee taste bud universe from the $5 people, but you know what, I am okay with that!)

Diana

But what kind of alcohol goes best in these? It's important.

meetapossum

@Diana Coffee: whiskey, Bailey's, amaretto

Tea: bourbon. All the bourbon.

Judith Slutler

@Diana I've made some rum and iced coffee drinks to go with dessert, they went over well with my guests! Also, whiskey or Bailey's would definitely work.

cosmia

@meetapossum SO MUCH BOURBON. Gin is also surprisingly good in most citrus-y iced teas.

RK Fire

@Diana The kind of alcohol that already exists in your house, obviously. (Probably any sort of liquor..)

Nocs

@meetapossum Oh my god how did I not know this? I've only ever had tea with...more tea. It has somehow never occurred to me to booze up tea.

EpWs

@RK Fire The bottle of sweet tea vodka above my sink should do nicely, right?

Jinxie

@Nocs A few years ago my roommate and I discovered the brilliance of tea-infused vodka. Dangerously easy to drink.

Jinxie

@The Everpresent Wordsnatcher I loved that stuff more than I should until I started experimenting with DIY tea-vodka so now I can have all of the tea vodka with none of the "oh god what is IN this stuff" sugar/artificial color-enhanced hangovers.

meetapossum

@Jinxie Tell me more about this tea-vodka you make.

Jizzcliner

@meetapossum You can also make coffee infused vodka. And coffee infused butter. Some flavour compounds are water soluble, some are alcohol soluble and some are fat soluble.

meetapossum

@Jizzcliner You just pour some coffee/tea in the vodka and let it sit for a while?

Jizzcliner

@meetapossum There are a lot of different methods. Some involving heat, some cold. Some use a whipping siphon to extract flavour faster, some with ground coffee, some with whole beans. Making it the same way as regular iced coffee is great, but you lose some alcohol yield because it soaks the grounds.

Jinxie

@meetapossum It's stupidly simple! I add 3 tbs good-quality loose black tea (I know there are some good tea bags out there, but the ones I tried tended to make for a really bitter drink.) to 1 - 750 ml bottle vodka, and let steep from 1-3 hours (depending on how strong I wanted it). Once it's steeped to your liking, strain the vodka and pour into the clean vessel of your choice. If you like, you can add simple syrup (again, to taste) directly to the bottle, but we usually left that out so we could sweeten our drinks to taste (or not sweeten them at all). If you're worried about which tea to use or which steeping time works best, you could also just experiment with small jars of vodka and less tea. Green tea also works nicely (especially this mandarin-flavored green tea we made once) but I found it harder to gauge the right steep time. Haven't a clue as to how it'd work with herbal teas, but I imagine the basic formula can't be too different.

MilesofMountains

@Nocs I went to a talk on tea-based cocktails. There is an amazing variety. My favourite one was made by infusing whiskey with a black tea with oranges and cloves.

Jinxie

@MilesofMountains A talk on tea-based cocktails?? JEALOUS.

MilesofMountains

@Jinxie It was so good! I took so many notes on it. Maybe I will try out some more of the techniques and see if the Hairpin would be interested in a post on it.

mustelid

@Jinxie I'm way late to this thread, but I made a tea-based cocktail this weekend -- jasmine tea, gin, limoncello, other stuff -- and it was really good.

PatatasBravas

But I thought Michael Whatever wanted us to re-up the bacterias in our system, so maybe we need to drink more sun tea?

SarcasticFringehead

@PatatasBravas Don't worry. Whatever you do, you're Doing it Wrong.

Judith Slutler

@SarcasticFringehead You're Doing It Wrong And You Will Die.

fondue with cheddar

@PatatasBravas Bacteria is good for you! Except when it's bad!

Clare

If you just want plain simple syrup, you don't need to dirty a pot or heat up the stove. I once saw a bartender use a no-heat method to make simple syrup in a quart container and it works great.

Use the same ratio as regular simple syrup, but put the water and sugar in one of those sturdy reusable plastic quart containers from the Chinese restaurant or a quart mason jar with a screw-down lid. Shake the bejeezus out of the container for 30 whole seconds and walk away from the container for five minutes. Repeat the shake-and-walk away process two more times. It's magic!

cosmia

@Clare I do this! I also sometimes just boil water in my kettle and pour it into a glass tupperware with the correct ratio of sugar, then stir it and stick it in the fridge for later

highfivesforall

I now keep coffee ice cubes in my freezer for instant (well almost instant), non-diluted iced coffee whenever I want, because of a wonderful hairpin commenter! I don't remember who mentioned it, but: thank you!

frigwiggin

Okay, but what if...one has never bought coffee before and knows nothing about it. WHAT IF. Does one go to the grinder area at the grocery store? I assume the red tub is a no-go.

Judith Slutler

@frigwiggin Sure, go to the grinder area! Smell the coffee. Buy a couple of coffees that smell good, in small amounts. Drink and compare. Keep buying your favorite. There, that's all you need to know.

fondue with cheddar

@Judith Slutler I hate hate HATE coffee, but I LOVE the smell of the grinder area of the grocery store.

Beatrix Kiddo

@frigwiggin Go to the grinder, because it will taste much better if it's freshly ground. Also, bonus if you can find coffee beans that were roasted very recently, because that also makes it fresher than if the beans were ground today but roasted weeks ago. Dark roast coffees are usually best for cold brew.

anachronistique

@frigwiggin Go to the "Latin"/"Hispanic" section of your grocery and see if they have Cafe Bustelo or El Pico! Those are my favorites - they're dark espresso-style roasts.

ach_so

@frigwiggin Buy at Trader Joe's! You can't go wrong.

theharpoon

@frigwiggin I'm a fan of Viennese Blend for cold brew, it seems to be pretty standard across grocery stores and I've found that a lot of places have it.

elissa_what?

@frigwiggin I think cold brewing it makes it so smooth that I cheap out on the grounds - pre-ground red tin all the way.

Jizzcliner

@frigwiggin Do you live anywhere near a roaster? Sometimes they have cuppings, where you can taste the coffee and see what you like. There is a lot of variety to coffee!

telling_everyone

@frigwiggin yep! grind the beans yourself, especially because the pre-ground stuff is likely too fine for cold brewing & french press. you want a pretty coarse grind setting when you cold brew.

telling_everyone

@Jizzcliner this! When I first starting working in coffee I was so surprised at how much variety there is. everything from the roast to the growing region to the preparation method affects taste. I like to use latin american beans for my cold brew because of the one's I've tried, they tend to be a little heavier and less bright & fruity than afican coffees.

Oh--another thing to try: to make the concentrate a little heavier and darker, try using some regular coffee beans and some roasted for espresso. I use a 3-to-1ish ratio, but trial and error is part of the fun, I think.

/coffee nerd

Jray

Sun tea RULES

ayo nicole

YES. I cold brew my coffee the Pioneer Woman way because I don't have a french press. So easy.
http://thepioneerwoman.com/cooking/2011/06/perfect-iced-coffee/

par_parenthese

@ayo nicole Re: that recipe, man, I am a FOOL for anything with sweetened condensed milk in it. A FOOL.

amirite

Can I brew the coffee concentrate and use it over several days, or does it start getting bitter?

Beatrix Kiddo

@amirite It definitely stays good for at least 3 days. I've never had any leftover after that long.

theharpoon

@amirite 2 weeks is for true, especially if you vacuum seal - I use a wine sealer pump thingy if I think it's going to take me a while to finish it.

Jinxie

@Beatrix Kiddo What if you froze the leftovers? Ooh! Iced Coffee slushies!

the angry little raincloud

@Jinxie I freeze leftover coffee (like, when there's just a itsy bit left in the pot, not enough for a cup), and then I use those Coffee Ice Cubes to chill my iced coffee to avoid that gross watering down. That was one of the better discoveries of my life! (Call me Marie Curie, over here!)

anachronistique

Last time I strained my cold brew, I just opened up the top of my coffee maker and poured it directly through the basket into the pot. (With a filter, of course.) And then I didn't have to wash my strainer, which always makes me feel like I'm not actually cleaning it properly.

werewolfbarmitzvah

This whole time I thought sun tea was when you pee into a bottle!

Jinxie

@werewolfbarmitzvah :(

elissa_what?

@werewolfbarmitzvah It is if you're Frank Rossitano!

Lurkasaurus

@werewolfbarmitzvah yes! Me too! I had no idea the entire concept wasn't just a joke 30 Rock made up before I read this.

Also, your username and your comment go together quite nicely :D

redheaded&crazy

These all sound real fancy folks. I made iced coffee for the first time yesterday, and it was completely delicious! My eyes are opened to the way, the light, the truth, etc.

Oh yeah but, I make mine with instant coffee. HAHAHAHAH coffee snobs look away, blasphemy resides herein.

1 cup boiling water
2 cups cold water
3 tbsp instant coffee
1/2 cup milk/cream
1/2 cup sugar

fill glass with ice, pour over ice. SO EASY.

redheaded&crazy

@redheaded&crazy oh yeah, it makes about 4-5 servings I guess.

theharpoon

Yay cold brew recognition!! It's the best.

chevyvan

@theharpoon I can immediately taste it when coffee places don't cold brew. It is disgusting. COLD BREW 4 LIFE.

singstrix

Aaagh I am an idiot, why have I never thought of straining cold brew with my French press! I have a dusty Toddy system somewhere, but its filters are revolting + buying new filters is harrrrd + French press has built-in washable plunger. (But tiny coldbrew batches?) ((But CONVENIENCE??))

chevyvan

@singstrix It took me a who summer of making iced coffee in a glass pitcher to figure this out as well. But honestly, I still strain it with a fine mesh strainer and a paper coffee filter after I'm done with the french press b/c otherwise it's still comes out of the french press with a little coffee silt in it.

Jinxie

I love how quickly the comments turned to the question of "But how can we add alcohol to this?"

par_parenthese

@Jinxie What do we always say is the most important thing?

meetapossum

@par_parenthese Breakfast.

simone eastbro

@Jinxie this is where I mention that I wanted to title this "SUMMER DRANK, Y'ALL"

par_parenthese

@meetapossum BREAKFAST WITH ALCOHOL

charmcity

@Jinxie "...and a piece of toast."

Jinxie

@par_parenthese

Jinxie

@Jinxie Also appropriate:

MrsLlama

YOU CAN PRY MY SUN TEA FROM MY COLD, REFRESHED, DEAD HANDS. No one I know has ever gotten sick from it. Although since I have been pregnant, I won't drink it. So I guess I'm a hypocrite?

and Re the iced coffee, this is something I constantly struggle with. Growing up my mom always kept a big pitcher of cold-brewed concentrate in the fridge and it was/is delicious and way cheap. However, I will usually go down to the coffee place and buy said $5 coffee for two reasons-

one, it's a social activity/a reason to get out of the house and take a walk and interact with other humans. And two, if I have that much delicious iced coffee in the house I will drink it ALL AT ONCE and then I will die. So it's a HEALTH ISSUE really, mental as well as physical. That is worth my $5.

Sarah @twitter

I will never stop making sun tea EVER. In fact, I am going to make sun tea tomorrow.

likethestore

This summer I want to figure out sweet tea. You can't get it up here in the arctic north and it's my #1 favourite thing about visiting the states. The McDonald's kind is especially amazing. God bless the USA and your affinity for sugar.

Cat named Virtute

@likethestore I thought Canadian iced tea was sweet tea, and that most Americans drink a more bitter version of iced tea than is sold here. Is that wrong?!

Passion Fruit

@likethestore

Your comment made me laugh out loud on my shitty, shitty Friday evening. Yes, "God bless the USA and [our] affinity for sugar."

likethestore

@Cat named Virtute Here iced tea is usually something like Nestea, which is sweet, but I was talking about southern sweet tea. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sweet_tea It's a totally different taste and completely amazing.

does it need saying

@likethestore I will give you my mother and aunt's secret...
Lipton Decaf either brewed on the stove or run through the coffee maker (3-5 regular bags or 1-3 family bags for a 12 cup maker), pour into a pitcher with 1 cup of sugar while hot (or 2 cups if you're my aunt). Stir and refrigerate. Oh, and if you like that McDonald's flavor add a little molasses.

Ham Snadwich

GERMS EVERYWHERE

Miss Maszkerádi

Does anyone know how to make Thai iced tea?! Seriously what is in that stuff to make it so heavenly....?

harebell

@Miss Maszkerádi

Yes! Very easy. I've bought the herb powder before that you can add to black tea. It's reddish and is sold in many Asian grocery stores in the US. That + condensed milk and ice cubes, and you've got it.

Sorry I don't know the name of the herbs, but it's always been labeled "Thai tea."

Miss Maszkerádi

@harebell Ooh yay thank you!

siniichulok

Pregnancy demi-kvetch: I'm 37 weeks today, I just got back from an appointment with my nice new OB, who said that slightly impaired glucose tolerance still means "regular" labor (at least unless things get interesting in some other way), and that even though my hospital is a teaching hospital, it just means I'll have a consistent team of expert OB + a couple of students during L&D, and there WON'T be hordes of additional students trooping in to look at or feel my vadge. Yay! Last two L&D fears taken care of. Also, I had an ultrasound today and the baby is 7.4 lbs ("a little juicy,just fine" according to the OB). Now that I'm home I am unable to execute all these fabulous nesting-type plans that I had, which included altering all my warm-weather maternity clothes on the sewing machine so that they fit (had to get 'em too large to accommodate my bump so they gape and sag everywhere else). I'm so tired that all I can do is stare dully at the computer. I'm so glad that it's FOT Day!

whizz_dumb

My first batch of simple syrup grew some mold on top in about 3 weeks, the next time I squeezed some lemon juice in there and it lasted so much longer. I use mine for cocktails so the slight citrus flavor is benign/welcomed.

megadith

I have been making my iced coffee in my Chemex so far this summer and it's tasty, plus has the benefit of instant gratification. You fill the Chemex with 350g of ice, put in 50g of coffee, and then pour in 350g of hot water. It makes about 3 cups, so I put any extra in a pitcher in the fridge (straining out the ice).

beecaveroad

In New Orleans, they sell iced coffee concentrate at the grocery store. I've used the recipe in that NYT article but it always ends up being a mess... the premade concentrate is like $10 for a liter but it lasts for about two weeks of at least daily iced coffees. Yaay laziness and a city that regards iced coffee as necessary for life!

mlle.gateau

Y'ALL. I have been cold-brewing tea in a mason jar for the last two days since I read this article, and it is MAGNIFICENT. I am doing it with ALL THE HERBAL TEA. If you are like me and have tons of random tea lying about, this is totally worth it. Today I am going to add some leftover Grand Marnier to my Twinings Honeybush Mandarin & Orange tea and wait for the magic to overwhelm system. I also feel like the Honey Whiskey/Bourbons will do really well with stuff. HELLO SUMMER!

Miss Maszkerádi

I can now attest to the fact that the cardamom simple syrup + rose water idea for iced coffee is DELICIOUS.

The Attic Wife

Add me to the list of true cold brew believers. I made one batch last night and it's sitting in a plastic cup in my office, being leisurely sipped. I've got another batch chilling in the fridge right now (my French Press has a three cup max, so it's MINE, ALL MINE!)

simone eastbro

@The Attic Wife eeeeee I am so glad!

Blast Furnace

YOU GUYS! SUMMER IS HERE! And I wanna say, as a long-time lurker, second-time poster, hopefully-not-spammer that my summer drink of choice is bourbon lemonade (i.e. bourbon+lemonade) which I will be drinking liberally before the opening of this improvised musical I am in and drew the poster for! I don't know if you ladies are gonna be looking for some good-times-musical-make-'em-ups instead of patio time on Wednesdays in June, but here's the link if you want: https://www.facebook.com/events/465662526845431/?fref=ts

SUMMARRRR!

Kelsey@twitter

This is mostly dead on but you kinda lost me at this notion of "diluting" cold brew by 3/4. THAT IS WATER. THAT IS NO LONGER COFFEE.

simone eastbro

@Kelsey@twitter OK having recently made my own recipe for the first time in a while: you are totally right. this does not need to be diluted.

AmandaElsewhere

I registered on the Hairpin and everything just to comment on this post to say THANK YOU SO MUCH for saving my bank account and this coffee is the best coffee.

simone eastbro

@AmandaElsewhere YOU ARE WELCOME!

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