I recently stumbled across a seemingly little-known corner of the coffee drinking world - the cold press.
In short, cold press coffee is essentially a method of brewing coffee using room temperature water for an extended period of time (in my case, 12 hours). The thinking behind this is fairly simple - when brewing coffee with boiling water, the flavours in the grounds are released quickly, but bitter compounds in the grounds are also released at the same time. This can lead to a wonderfully rich but slightly acidic tasting result. Enter the cold press! Instead of pouring boiling water into your cafetiere (or french press, if you’re so inclined), you add room temperature water. Straight from the tap. No kettle needed. A little strange, I admit. But the idea is that by omitting the heat from the equation, you also lose the bitter aftertaste of a hastily brewed pot.
So, here are some general guidelines:
- Grab cafetiere. I used one of those big ones that roughly makes 8 ‘cups’ (although I’ve always felt that it was a little more like 4/5).
- Grind coffee (or just take the package of coffee out of the cupboard/fridge). There are two schools of thought here - coarse ground coffee is easier to filter out at the end, but fine ground coffee gives better flavour. In any case, I used some Turkish fine ground coffee that I bought in Istanbul.
- Add coffee and room temperature water to cafetiere. I searched around online and apparently the best ratio is 4.5 parts water to 1 part coffee grounds. I used this ratio and added a mug of coffee grounds and 4.5 mugs of water.
- Stir your large pot of mud and let it settle a bit.
- After 10 minutes, stir again to make sure no coffee is sitting on the top and cover the top of the cafetiere in cling film. Don’t put the top of the cafetiere on or push the plunger yet!
- Wait 12 hours. I recommend making this in the evening and drinking the next morning.
- Wake up. Remove cling film. Put top on cafetiere and push plunger down slowly, trying to make sure no pesky grounds are stirred up and that you squash them all down to the bottom.
- Decant coffee into container/jug/very large mug. I filtered mine as I did this as I had used very fine ground coffee, but there was very little sediment in the filter at the end anyway. So you can probably skip the filtering if you want.
- Try it! It might be on the strong side, so you can dilute it a little with milk or cool water if you need to or just pour over ice. I liked mine straight from the jug and at room temperature.
I realise this may come as a slightly late recommendation as summer is definitely ending and this makes for a great iced coffee. Maybe this can be gently heated in a pan? I’m not sure. Either way, it makes great tasting coffee.