Talking Cold Brew Coffee

Talking Cold Brew Coffee

Let’s Talk Coffee® is known throughout the coffee world as an event like no other. Held in a different coffee-growing country each year, Let’s Talk Coffee® draws a higher contingent of coffee producers than any other industry gathering. But it’s not just growers who come to Let’s Talk Coffee®: Coffee professionals from around the world—from roasters to NGOs to financiers—flock to the event to create a truly unique origin experience. 

The next Let’s Talk Coffee® will take place in November in Kigali, Rwanda—stay tuned for further details, to be announced in the coming weeks. In anticipation of the Rwanda event, we’re taking a look at some memorable moments from Let’s Talk Coffee® 2014, which took place in Panama. Enjoy this blast from the past, and we’ll see you in Rwanda! 

The “cold brew” method of making coffee is one of the simplest. To make a batch, the user steeps coarsely ground coffee in cold or room temperature for several hours—usually around 12. The grounds are filtered out when the brewing process is complete, and the result is a strong brew that is typically diluted with water and/or milk.

Though cold brew is not a new method of making coffee, it’s one that people have gravitated to in recent years—maybe because it meets their desire for strong coffee, or maybe because it’s so easy to make.

At Let’s Talk Coffee® 2014, we decided to jump into the topic of cold brew by bringing together a couple of roasting companies that use cold brew in different ways. Stephen Vick is the green coffee buyer of Blue Bottle Coffee, which in 2014 launched a New Orleans Iced Coffee made from cold-brew coffee. Nathanael May is director of coffee at Portland Roasting, which has seen cold-brew coffee’s popularity increase among the company’s wholesale accounts.

Stephen and Nathanael sat down with moderator Marcus Young of Sustainable Harvest® for a panel discussion covering the many facets of cold brew. Please enjoy.