Summer is here! So for us coffee lovers it means that cold brew coffee is also in season. We all love our regular cups of coffee of course, but when the temperature is going through the roof, a hot coffee becomes less and less enticing. The answer is to switch to Cold Brew Coffee.
Cold Brew Coffee or just Cold Brew, is fantastic when the temperature is warm, but is truly an all year-round beverage. The terrific flavour of sweet and smooth coffee combined with icy cold milk takes your coffee experience to the next level.
Creating café quality Cold Brew at home is easy. In essence, it is ground coffee, steeped in room temperature water for up to 24hrs, filtered to create a concentrate that can be enjoyed with milk or straight.
The two Cold Brewers that we recommend are the Hario Mizudashi Cold Brew Pot and the Toddy Cold Brew System because of their simple, no-hassle approach, but most importantly they produce an incredible, decadent brew!
The two are the opposite ends of the brewing spectrum, Iced coffee is brewed hot and served cold, cold brew is brewed at room temperature and served cold.
Iced coffee is where you chill hot coffee either by pouring it over ice or refrigerating it for a few hours before serving.
Ice Coffee has its place and can be incredible, it does have its drawbacks.
A thin, weak drink can occur simply from the melting of the ice watering down your coffee.
Ice Coffee can be bitter.
A traditional iced coffee contains up to 67% higher levels of acidity that manifest as bitterness than cold brew coffee.
Espresso brewed coffee from your local café is particularly prone to a higher acidic taste because the oils in coffee solubles oxidize more quickly at higher brewing temperatures.
Simply- the oils in coffee combine with oxygen at a rapid speed thanks to the heat, causing the coffee to taste sour.
Cold brew fans say it tastes smoother than typical iced coffee, and those who are sensitive to acid believe it is easier-drinking than hot coffee.
The Hario Mizadashi Cold Pot enables you to make cold brew by adding water to the fresh coffee trapped in the neat filter. The mixture the placed in the refrigerator or leaving it on the benchtop.
As with all cold brew systems, the vital brewing element is time, so you will need to leave for around 8 hours. The best time to brew your coffee is over night so you can enjoy cold brew for the rest of the following day.
The Hario Mizadashi Cold Pot is an attractive and functional piece of kit. It is made in Japan so as you can expect it to feature a stylish design and is well constructed from heat proof glass.
The top part of the jug is finished in chocolate brown or black and the filter is manufactured from polyester resin and is reusable. Should accidently damage any parts of your pot, spare parts are readily available
The Hario Mizadashi Cold Pot has a capacity of either 600ml or 1ltr. The 600ml pot is good for about 4-6 cups of coffee and the 1ltr for about 6-10 depending on how much you dilute it.
The Hario Mizadashi Cold Pot has some neat features. The reusable mesh filter is a great addition, so no need to buy extra filters, its inexpensive - the 600ml pot starts at $28.95 and our favourite- it fits right in your fridge door!
The Toddy Cold Brew System can be considered the pioneer of cold brewing.
Toddy cold brew coffee system was invented back in 1963 and have sold millions of systems the last 50 years
The capacity on the Toddy Cold Brew Systems is fantastic and is one of its best features. It produces over 1.5 litres of concentrated coffee which you then dilute with water or milk. This creates up to 4.5 litres of drinkable coffee depending on how strong you like it.
The Toddy Cold Brew System come with a reusable fine cloth filter to remove unwanted coffee grounds to produce a less bitter tasting coffee that is smooth and delicious.
Appearance wise, the Toddy Cold Brew System is bulker and less attractive than the Hario Mizadashi Cold Pot. The plastic brewing chamber fits on top of a provided glass carafe is functional, although a little clunky.
The coffee brewing process is also longer. It takes the Toddy between 14 – 24 hours to fully brew a batch of coffee so you will have to allow for more time than the The Hario Mizadashi Cold Pot with only needs a minimum of 8hrs.
Hario Mizadashi Cold Pot -
If we are basing our opinions solely on usability, the Hario would win.
You just grind your coffee, add it to the brew chamber, and slowly fill the carafe with water until the coffee is submerged.
When it’s done brewing, you pull the brew chamber out, dump the grounds and throw the carafe in the fridge. Done.
Toddy Cold Brew System-
The Toddy Cold Brew System needs more effort.
We greatly recommend getting the kitchen scales out and following the provided the instructions for the Toddy. Measuring the coffee and water is paramount to getting great results. The Hario is a little more forgiving to ‘eyeballing’ the coffee amount.
The way you ‘layer’ the ground coffee and water in the Toddy is critical to evenly extracting your cold brew and getting the most out of this brew device.
The large capacity of the Toddy is one of its major draw cards as it produces up to 1.5ltrs of cold brew concentrate.
Emptying the Toddy takes some dexterity by placing the plastic brew bucket over the provided heatproof glass carafe and when you remove the rubber plug cold brew will slowly pour out of the bottom into the carafe.
Cleaning the Toddy has its issues too as the process can get quite messy.
The urge to dump all the sludgy, coffee ground needs to be restrained as there is a reusable felt filter in the bottom. Make sure you dig this filter out first.
Toddy does sell single use filter bags which do make cleaning up so much easier and are worth investing in if you are regularly using your Toddy.
We believe there is.
The differences between the Hario and the Todd is how the units hold the coffee, how it is filtered and volume of coffee they produce.
In the Hario the coffee is suspended in the water carafe in a mesh filter where with the Toddy the coffee and the water are mixed together and filtered through a ‘hockey puk’ sized felt filter at the bottom of the brew bucket.
Our opinion there is a noticeable difference in flavour between the brews.
The Toddy produces a very rich, sweet and strong brew, whereas the Hario it is more sweet, mellow and allows its self to be consumed black or straight better.
We believe the way the coffee is extracted in suspension in the Hario is not as good as the mixed extraction of the Toddy. Our working assumption is that more of the water is touching the coffee int the Toddy whereas the filter in the Hario only ascends half of the length of the carafe leading to increased extraction and flavour in the Toddy.
They Toddy also allows more experimentation with brewing i.e.: more coffee and less water or less water and more coffee. Whereas you are limited to the amount of coffee the Hario can fit.
These could just be a preferences as we cannot find any scientific evidence to support this theory.
The felt filter of the Toddy does a better job at filtering out all the unwanted coffee solids compared the mesh filter of the Hario. The coffee from the Toddy is sediment free and noticeably cleaner.
Any of them.
Cold brewing is a great way to try new coffees.
We like and us both the Hunter Blend and Dusk Blends in our Fox Coffee Cold Brews as they’re both bold and strong and mix very well with our rich milk.
Toffee noted single origin coffee’s like our El Salvador Los Pirineos and Brazil Santa Lucia are both fantastic options too.
Place anywhere between 80gms-110g (depending on how strong you like it) of coarsely ground coffee into the mesh filter and then fill the pot up to the top ‘band’ with cold, preferably filtered, water.
Place the pot into your fridge door on or the benchtop and leave for a minimum of 8hrs to a maximum of 24hrs.
Once the time is up, just pull the mesh filter out put the lid back on, serve and enjoy.
Both the Hario and the Toddy Cold Brew System are highly regarded excellent quality cold brew coffee devices that offer a range of advantages.
For ease of use and mellow, sweet coffee they Hario cold brew if a perfect choice.
For rich, decadent cold brew and lots of it, the Toddy is for you.
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