There are many ways to enjoy coffee. You can drink it hot or cold. If you love milk, you can even add in mild. There are a variety of flavors for you to choose from. A good coffee can make a day for you. As a coffee lover, do you love hot brew and cold brew? How much do you know about it?
Cold brew had popped up on the menu some years ago. The popularity of the cold brew has been increasing ever since. Hot brew coffee is hot, while cold brew coffee is cold. It isn’t wrong technically. But if you assumed that a cold brew is a cup of hot coffee that was left cold or cooled down with ice, then you may be wrong.
The difference between cold and hot brew coffee is mainly the brewing method. Both coffees have their unique taste. If you are confused with cold brew and hot brew coffee, let’s go through this article and see what you should know about it.
What Is Cold Brew?
Video Credit: HomeGrounds Coffee
Cold brewed coffee is a type of cold coffee made by soaking ground coffee in cold water or room-temperature water for several hours. Usually, it will be 12 to 18 hours or even longer. It will then be taken out and chilled before serving it. It can be served as-is or diluted with water. You can even make iced coffee.
Cold brewing will extract the flavor from the coffee beans along with the caffeine. It will produce a rich, flavorful, and stimulating brew. You can add in milk, sugar, and/or cream according to your taste.
Using cold brew method allows the flavor to be much smoother and milder than ordinary brewed coffee. It also lacks acidic quality. This is because brewing the coffee bean with cool water doesn’t have the chemical changes that produce the acidity and the bitter taste you get from hot coffee.
What Is Hot Brew?
Hot brew coffee is made by pouring hot water over the ground coffee beans. It allows the mixture to steep before filtering out the ground. You will get a richer, more flavorful coffee for your break time during the day.
There are a few brewing methods, including a drip machine, a French press, or a pour-over coffee maker. The versatility makes hot brew very appealing, which is why millions of people from all around the world enjoy it. There are endless ways to suit your tastes when trying out a regular hot brewed coffee. You can enjoy it at home or in a coffee shop.
Cold Brew VS Hot Brew #1 - Cold Brew Has Lower Acidity And Bitterness
You can taste the difference between cold and hot brew the moment you take the first sip. This is because brewing the coffee beans with cold water can produce changes from brewing with hot water. The obvious one will be cold brew coffee has lower acidity and bitterness.
Extraction is the main reason. It happens when water dissolves and pulls things out of coffee beans. It can be acids, oils, sugars, and other stuff. The things that are being pulled out depend on the temperature and speeds.
For example, if you use 210 degrees to brew your coffee, you will most probably get a stronger bitterness. Using 185 degrees may cause your coffee to taste too sour. That is why we should use the speed to balance without allowing the acid or bitter compound to overpower the flavor of the coffee.
But if you use cold water, it will slow down the extraction. It changes what is extracted and what stays behind in the ground.
Cold Brew VS Hot Brew #2 - Flavors Can Change Dramatically
Oxidation and degradation can happen much slowly with cold water. Not only will cold brew be less bitter and acidic, but there will also be big differences in flavor. Using the same batch of coffee beans to may a mug of hot and cold brew coffee, you will be surprised at how different the flavor is.
A good cup of hot brewed coffee has a satisfying aroma, a rounded flavor, a crisp acidity, a gentle sweetness, and lower bitter notes. While a good cup of cold-brewed coffee has a smoother flavor, a gentle acidity, richer sweetness, and no bitterness.
Cold brew coffee doesn’t have the rich aromas of hot brewed coffee, and there is a reason for it. When coffee oils are hot, they are able to evaporate quicker. But when you use cold water, the oil will remain cold and won’t evaporate fast. They will remain in the coffee.
So when you swallow the cold brew coffee, you feel those aromatic oils hitting your retro-nasal passage. Your brain will interpret them as vibrant floral flavors.
Cold Brew VS Hot Brew #3 - Cold Brew Has More Versatile
Hot coffee can be rich, cozy, and satisfying. You can make a few drinks with it, but if you are going for versatility, it won’t be something that most people will go after. On the other hand, cold brew coffee can be made into various drinks.
Cold brew coffee can be made into various drinks because the process doesn’t produce a ready-to-drink brew. It creates a coffee concentrate that you can pair with many other ingredients. For example, you can mix it with cold milk and ice or cold water and ice. If you want something more interesting, mix it with sugar, a spirit, and another mixer.
There are many ingredients you can pair with. If you like to explore more flavors, cold brew is a better choice for creative drink-making.
Which Is Better? Hot Or Cold Brew?
There’s no right answer to this. It depends on your own preference. Some people prefer cold brew coffee, but some will find the taste too diluted and go for hot brew coffee.
Both coffee are great options, but if you are unsure which to choose, you can go for cold brew coffee if you are looking for a refreshing coffee. It can sweeten your taste bud. If you prefer a more robust coffee flavor, you will want to go for a hot-brewed coffee that can be made within minutes.