Cold Brew - Pros And Cons?

edited October 2013 in Bulletproof Coffee

Hey guys!

I've been making BP Coffee for at least an year now. However I recently discovered cold brewing - you basically soak your ground coffee in water for 8+ hours. The coffee you get from that tastes much better to me but I wonder Does cold brewing extract all the important components of coffee that we need for the nootropic effects.


What do you think?






  • edited October 2013

    Pros: Tastes better. Seems stronger.

    Cons: Takes longer. Won't melt butter.

    I personally couldn't understand why people drank coffee until I drank a shot of cold brew. I drank it slowly and it seemed to absorb in my tongue and alter my state of mind a little to be a bit more focused when I needed to write.

  • Yep! I really like the taste better and I can eat butter on the side :) Also I can easily brew 2.5 liter in a huge jar during the weekend and then ration it throughout the week, My main concern is whether or not I am missing some important component that the heat extracts and the cold brew does not :)


    P.S. I underline and bold the important part of my posts so people that want to go quickly through my rambling can do that easily  :ugeek:

  • KevlarKevlar I eat pizza with 9mm bullets

    I too have been contemplating cold pressing my BP coffee, and had the same main question as you about the extraction of the antioxidants etc through heat.

    I think the point about butter is workable- assuming one has a high-powered blender just put in coffee and blend till it warms up, then add butter, or melt the butter in a pot or double boiler.. and add to coffee/blender.

  • Can the cold brew extract be heated and still keep it`s properties? or is cold brew because the extract can only be served cold?

  • SkeletorSkeletor The Conqueror Worm ✭✭✭
    edited November 2014

    Can the cold brew extract be heated and still keep it`s properties? or is cold brew because the extract can only be served cold?

    Yes, cold brew coffee can be heated and served like "normal" coffee.

    "I know how to despise mere cool intelligence. What I want is intelligence matched by pure, physical existence, like a statue." --Yukio Mishima


    Let's be friends on MyFitnessPal!

  • edited December 2014

    Yes, cold brew coffee can be heated and served like "normal" coffee.


    you did not thoroughly answer his question.


    Of course cold brew can be heated and served like normal coffee.

    He didn't ask whether it would explode if heated...he asked if heating it would ruin the purported

    advantages of cold brewing .


    So we've got a strange jumble of a thread here.

    The original poster says he likes the taste of cold brew better, but he's not sure if it is as 'smart' as

    hot-brewed coffee.

    The second poster replies that he swears by cold brew being stronger and better (in other words smarter)

    than hot brew. But there is nothing posted to explain why that would be the case.


    The fifth poster seems convinced that cold brew is 'smarter' than hot, which is the complete opposite of

    what the original poster was curious about.... recall that the original poster's question concerned whether

    cold brew was even as 'smart' as hot brew.  


    He seems conviced of the superiority of cold brew, tor no reason other than a tongue anecdote....


    So, it seems that .the consensusis shifting to cold brew being not just as 'smart' as hot brew, but even smarter because it is brewed cold.


    Where is the science or even hypothesis to back this?


    A term mentioned a couple of times here in this thread is that cold brewed coffee tastes better. One poster

    also adds that it tastes stronger,

    So how exactly does it taste better? Is it sweeter? Stronger?



    Is cold brew stronger because the grounds  have soaked  in the water for over 8 hours? Is 'better' then another word

    for stronger? 


    If you just want stronger coffee- use more coffee beans  and less water, Problem solved. Stronger coffee.

    More caffiene. More tongue-focus/nootropic hocus  presumably too.

    Less snot factor, certainly..but hey , if you want glamor, bathe in the stuff and tell us all about it.


    Cold brewing sounds like it could be  a way to make expensive coffee go farther if nothing else.

    You get stronger coffee from the same amount of beans, essentially.



    The next trend will be cold-brewing your used hot-brewed coffee grounds to whatever purpose that achieves.


    I could be missing some  key point about cold brew not just being stronger but also being  better tasting

    for some unexplained reason. Maybe its more natural , less denatured, to have coffee beans leaking their

    noble raw purity into cold water. Does cold water strip  less of the 'toast' or 'burnt' notes from roasted

    beans than does boiling water?


    Could it be that ,  cold-brewed coffee may be both  less bitter than hot-brewed coffee (less burnt oils stripped from the grind), and yet also stronger than hot-brewed coffee? (because the liquid it has luxuriated for eight hours immersion)


    If cold brewed coffee is coming out less bitter and stronger than hot-brew , then I think we might have our answer to the original

    poster's question. If the burnt toast bitters/burnt oil tars etc. are left behind , yet the coffee tastes stronger, what exactly are we tasting ?

    Presumably we are tasting more of  the oily meat of the coffee, and less of the burnt shell bean irritants.



    So in that case, then we are tasting the best components of the coffee , which are the nootropic meat oils .

    The reason our friend absorbed this potion deeper into his tongue was probably because it tasted better

    and enabled some sort of lingering penetration phenomena. Who really knows? 


    The saying goes that the "nose knows".

    The nose is a big part of our ability to taste things, so it could be said too that the 'tongue knows'

    a lot of things which the nose knows. Maybe even more intimately..


    First one to invent a cold-brew bulletproof coffeee machine which does all of this stuff, from overnight

    soak to melting the butter to reheating it all together and blending it .............with alarm clock/.mp3 player included

    gets full snot rights.  (deluxe version includes bean roaster,/bean grinder)


    btw, I don't expect most Generation Stoned caffiene-fiends to even read this ..... (attention span

     < or =  30 seconds), let alone reply to it.



  • SkeletorSkeletor The Conqueror Worm ✭✭✭
    edited December 2014



    A tip of my fedora for you, my somewhat incoherent keyboard warrior.

    "I know how to despise mere cool intelligence. What I want is intelligence matched by pure, physical existence, like a statue." --Yukio Mishima


    Let's be friends on MyFitnessPal!

  • I registered here just to comment and show appreciation for your musings, Hindredd Biggs. I got through to the end, thanks to my own nootropic cold brew. :D
    There's a fascinating article here about the merits of a Japanese method. Some of Shadoweaver's question is addressed, although not from the Bulletproof angle. After reading all the comments below it, the jury's out on what's really better. In the end, I'll go with what my gut tells me: Cold brew feels better.

  • I work in a specialty coffee store, and a few times over the last few weeks people have ordered espresso served over ice, kinda like the japanese method you mentioned @ikincaid now I want to test this for myself as we also serve cold brew. Ill report back with my anecdotes later this week. Yay experimentation

  • Following up on experimentation imho, espresso>iced espresso>cold brew

  • I have the same question as the OP which I surmise from reading through the thread that we really don't know. I actually like the taste of cold brew less than my Aeropress but currently doing the RFLP so nice to have the coffee for the day pre-made and just heat up what I need for each cup.

  • seems to take more coffee to make the same amount/ concentration
    heating it for each day doesnt take away from the taste
    just do it on the stove top, not microwave & its easy to over heat it

    but good question about losing the 'good components'
    I use the metal filters for all hot brewing, to retain all the good oils
    but use the toddy for cold brew & its filter is a thick cloth thing,
    so im guessing it keeps any oils out of the final product, if cold brew will even extract the oils in the first place
    it doesnt seem to, theres no visible oil on top prior to filtering it

  • From the toddy cafe site
    "Deceptively simple, cold water brewing extracts the delicious flavor compounds (and some of the caffeine) from coffee beans, but leaves behind myriad bitter oils and biting fatty acids, including undesirable elements such as ketones, esters and amides."

    Kinda sucks

  • edited April 2017

    Hi All,

    I work in a specialty health food store and make cold brew on a daily basis. We use 5 gallons of Toddy grind beans (usually light roast for the highest caffeine content and coarsest grind available to ensure maximum surface area of the bean in contact with the cold water) to 5 gallons of water (deionized and reverse osmosis to minimize particulate remaining). Our cold brew is steeped for a minimum of twelve hours to ensure smooth taste and caffeine content is acceptable. Once steeped, the beans are removed and pressed to ensure the highest amount of the concentrate is salvaged and diluted in a 1:4 ratio (1 gallon water: 4 gallons concentrate). One can steep the beans for a longer period prior to removing them; however for every additional twelve hours the beans are steeped, the concentrate should be diluted by an additional 1/2 gallon-1 gallon to minimize cold brew bitterness and maximize flavor. I would not recommend steeping beans for any longer than 36 hours as the diluted product after that time becomes too bitter to justify the increased caffeine levels. That being said, the stronger the brew, the more slowly it should be imbibed to minimize any caffeine-related side effects.

    Cold brew tends to have higher nootropic benefits as the caffeine is allowed to disperse into the liquid over a longer period of time, and is not destroyed by any heat application during the brewing process. To understand this it is important to explain the loss of caffeine in bean roasting. Beginning with the coffee bean at its source (normally green), this form contains the highest caffeine. The bean is then roasted to add texture, aroma, and flavor to the brew. The longer the bean is roasted, the lower the caffeine content. Hence decaffeinated coffee being as dark as the bean can go without destroying the flavor or burning the coffee bean. "The truth is, however, that the caffeine content in one coffee "bean" is the same no matter if it is Light or Dark roasted. The difference in caffeine content comes from the volume of coffee used when brewing. Light Roasted beans are SMALLER than their Dark Roasted counterparts because their cellular fibers haven't been blown apart and expanded. So if you measure your coffee using a scoop, then yes, you're getting more caffeine when you used a Light Roast because more beans can fit in that scoop. However, if you weigh your coffee (like most coffee pros) the caffeine content should be the same."

    I would not recommend adding butter to cold brew as it becomes solid at colder temperatures. However adding Brain Octane or MCT to cold brew is okay; I would just halve the amount you would normally use in a hot cup of coffee so you are not left with oil sitting on top of your java. In order to achieve the creaminess of a Bulletproof coffee in a cold brew setting, I would recommend the addition of a caramel coffee syrup since caramel is essentially caramelized butter which will allow the oil to bind to the syrup and dissolve better in the cold brew.

    Hope this helps!

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