frances in the city

NeceCITYs: Iced Coffee
July 1, 2009, 1:52 pm
Filed under: NeceCITYs

Alright, so I’m not in Chicago presently. But I am in a city still (we have a metropolitan area!!), and this is one of those luxuries that has become a neceCITY, regardless of geographic location.

Anyone who has read more than five things on this here blog or spent a morning in my natural habitat is aware that I love iced coffee. For some reason, I prefer my caffeine cold, and that works for me. For maybe the past four years I’ve enjoyed the taste of coffee. Not necessarily the jitter-benefits, just the flavor. I had iced coffee occasionally and appreciated that it was nearly the cheapest thing I could buy at Starbucks.
(Secret: you can order iced coffee at any coffee shop, ask for a pump of vanilla syrup and ask them to leave room so you can add your own milk and you will automatically have a fake vanilla latte that was around a dollar cheaper. If you add skim milk instead of half and half you’ve got like the healthiest/cheapest frou frou coffee drink available. Bam. You’re welcome.)
Around this time last summer I came across an article about cold brew/cold press coffee (it’s the same thing). They spoke of the flavorful wonders of making your iced coffee without hot water. Apparently, hot water adds a bitter taste when the coffee is cooled. Being my curious father’s daughter, I set out to try it. People, it is so easy. And so tasty. Your life will be changed.

I could just link to the article where I found the recipe, but I thought I’d explain the process that has worked best for me the past year.

  1. Locate your measuring cups. Find the 1/3 cup.
  2. Scoop 2/3 cup of your favorite coffee grounds. (I’ve taken to buying dark roast, but that’s just because I like the flavor)
  3. Put the coffee grounds in a medium sized container that you can cover (that’s to keep the roaches at bay).
  4. Pour 3 cups water in the container. You can add a little more or a little less water if you want. I add another half a cup to make it go further.
  5. Give the grounds a stir and cover the lid.
  6. Leave it alone for around 12 hours.
  7. After the excruciating wait, I use a funnel and a coffee filter to strain the coffee from the grounds.
  8. Pour coffee into a glass, add a couple ice cubes and some milk and enjoy!

Some people treat the cold coffee like a concentrate and add water until it reaches their desired strength. I drink it with enough milk to make a caramel-y color and go from there. But it’s pretty strong and has lots of caffeine. You can add sugar if you’d like, but I like the flavor as is. Deliciousssssss. This recipe usually lasts me around a week, assuming I’m consuming one small-ish cup a day.

The unfortunate thing about getting used to high quality things is you become spoiled. Good iced coffee will make you a snob and you won’t want to drink Starbucks’ iced coffee anymore because the flavor is muddy. You will be pretentious. I’m sorry. This also means McDonald’s won’t cut it either. You’ve been warned.

If you don’t want to commit to making your own, next time you are in a social setting that requires you to buy coffee and it’s hot outside, see if the coffee shop has anything on the menu listed as “cold brewed” or “cold pressed.” Usually they’ll tell you if they do. Caribou Coffee has my favorite easily available cold press in Chicago. If there’s a Caribou near you, that’s your best bet. But make sure you yell at them to leave room for milk because it is STRONG. So far Seattle’s Best Coffee at Border’s is the only convenient place in Wichita to buy cold press, and it’s really good.

Ok so this ended up on the long side…my apologies. But I have spread the good news of cold press coffee and my soul can rest.



6 Comments so far
Leave a comment

It’s your Rhode Island roots Dearest.

Comment by dad

Sounds good enough to try. Lots of love.

Comment by Grandma

I love iced coffee! I am going to definitely try this out!

Comment by Jennifer Appleton

The cold press coffee is in the fridge awaiting the iced coffee time of day. Which for me is right after lunch. The weather is hot enough and it’s not too close to bed time to have all that caffine.

I must be getting old.

Comment by Uncle Kenneth

By the way, it was great. I recommend an occasional stir when you think of it.

Comment by Uncle Kenneth

so after this post I made mocha popscicles (sp?) that are basically coffee, and they were sweetened with sweetened condensed milk. I liked it so much I started using it in my coffee and it’s amazing.

Comment by Kacie

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