Prepare cold coffee with the Cold Brew Dripper

I maestri della tostatura media
After having told and explained how to prepare coffee with the Moka, the Aeropress, the French Press, the Chemex, the Siphon, the Clever, the V60 and with the Napoletana, now I introduce you to the Cold Brew dripper!

The Cold Brew dripper represents a real innovation in the world of coffee, as it is a method for extracting coffee at very low temperatures!

The result in the cup is thus clearly different from a traditional coffee, which is prepared hot and only after cooling.

The History of Cold Brew

The instrument used is called Toddy, from the name of the inventor, the American Todd Simpson.

Todd was a chemical engineer who tasted his first filter coffee during a trip to Guatemala in the sixties, which he wanted to replicate once he got home!

His wife, who suffered from stomach problems, was very bothered by the acidic components present in the coffee.

Todd then set to work to understand the properties of the black bean, which after several experiments realized that the acid characteristics decrease as the temperature of the solvent, that is water, falls.

This is because the soluble substances in coffee are sensitive to temperature. Therefore, in the event of cold brew infusion temperatures, substances such as oils struggle to be released in the final drink.

He also made it possible for his wife to taste excellent coffees!

The cold extraction also has another great benefit: the volatile aromatic substances present in the ground, which in traditional extractions are released through evaporation, in this case remain more trapped in the drink, enriching the taste profile to the maximum.

The tool

The Toddy is made up of 3 different parts:

  • An upper water tank;
  • Connected with a tap to a central container, suitable for containing the ground coffee;
  • An underlying container, suitable for collecting the final drink.
Furthermore, this tool falls within the percolation extraction methods.

Let’s understand better: percolation is that method of coffee extraction in which the water passes through the ground in a “slow” way. The water is in fact pushed only and solely by the force of gravity, making its way slowly through the coffee stick, to be then collected in a container under the filter.

This extraction is very delicate, making it possible to obtain a fragrant, round and sweet coffee.

On the other hand, it differs from other percolation methods, such as Clever or V60, for the required extraction time, usually very long, ranging from 6 to 24 hours.

It also differs in the dose: a higher rate is usually used, i.e. 80 g of coffee on 1L of water, while the other brewing methods tend to have a Brew Ratio of 60 g of ground coffee on 1L of water.

Result in the cup

The low temperatures, long times and a higher rate allow to obtain a

sweet and chocolaty final drink, with a round and soft body, generally more enveloping than other types of filter coffee.

Extraction with Cold Brew

Preparing coffee with Cold Brew is simple and requires:

  • The tool, the Cold Brew dripper. Available on Amazon, there are several models with different price ranges. The most aesthetically beautiful and complete is around € 280.00, but you can easily opt for other smaller variants, between € 50.00 and € 120.00;
  • The special paper filters, usually sold together with the instrument;
  • And a scale.

If you want to be more precise and technical then I recommend a scale accurate to the gram (0.01) and a manual grinder, to grind the purchased beans only at the moment of extraction and thus keep the fragrance at the highest levels.

The Brew Ratio, i.e. the dose of coffee in relation to water, is 80 grams of coffee per 1 L of water; in this case, since I have a tool capable of holding up to 500 ml of water, I will use 500 ml of liquid and 40 grams of coffee.

The coffee must be ground wide, only a little finer than the coarse salt. To be precise, the particle size should be between 800 and 1000 microns (one micron is equal to one thousandth of a millimeter, and there are special sieves to be able to measure it).

Steps for extraction:
  • Wet a filter and place it on the base of the central container;
  • Pour the ground coffee over the filter and level it;
  • Now wet another filter and place it on top of the ground coffee;

This is because the water, coming down drop by drop from the tap placed centrally with respect to the entire stick of ground coffee, would tend to pass only in a central channel, not wetting all the coffee. Placing another filter that absorbs water on top of the grind will aid in the proper navigation of the liquid through each particle in the grind.

  • Now mount the instrument and pour the water into the container above, strictly from the bottle and not from the tap. If you want to get a very fresh drink, you can pour 250ml of water, combined with 250g of ice;
  • Open the tap, letting only one drop pass at a time. This datum can be taken as a reference: about 6 drops every 10 seconds;
  • Now you just have to wait for all the water to pass through the ground and then the extraction is completed.

NB. The time can vary a lot, from 6 hours up to 24 hours. In fact, this depends on how much water you have to pass, whether 250ml or 1L, and on how slowly you decide to let it pass through the tap.

So what is the optimal time for this draw?

It’s up to you to experiment! Try making the same coffee in 6 hours, then 10 then 16 and so on and choose which final drink you like best!

The time is thus extended to compensate for the lack of thermal energy, i.e. the absence of heat, which would dissolve the substances contained in the ground much faster.

I already know what you are thinking … “But I have to wait 8 hours to have a coffee?”

Obviously not!

The beauty of cold coffee is that it can be stored for up to 5 days in the refrigerator, without going rancid. I personally prepare it in the evening before going to bed so that in the morning, and also the following ones, it is ready in the fridge.


Undoubtedly it is a perfect coffee for the summer.

You can then create many drinks or drinks starting from Cold Brew coffee.

Or for those who, like me, are a lover of cold milk for breakfast, it’s perfect for spotting it!

It is also a method that gives us the opportunity to play: in fact, we can also infuse spices, aromas or fresh fruit in water, so as to give the final drink intense and particular aromatic notes.

Or again: we can completely replace the water with alcohol. For example, in Torrefazione Ernani in Milan, all summer we offer Campari with coffee!

If you still have any doubts, check out the video below!

Recommended coffees

All of the above is valid only if you use a quality coffee with a Medium or Medium-light Roast.

In fact, you can pay all the attention in the world to make an excellent coffee, but if you start from a dark roast, created by starting green coffees with defects and without merits, the result will always be a bitter cup with notes of rubber, wood. and empyheumatic (burned), if not even worse!

This is why I recommend that you use carefully selected coffees, especially single origins or Arabica-only blends, both washed and natural depending on what you would like to obtain: more aromaticity and freshness, choosing the first, or more sweetness and roundness, opting for the seconds.

Me, Martina, I recommend the Blue Diamond:

Or the Kalledevarapura:

Do you want to practice this method and also discover all the other techniques and tools for Brewing?

We are waiting for you at the Ernani Academy Brewing course!

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    Marketing, E-commerce e Social Media Manager
    Coffee Lover


    Martina Mazzoleni

    Marketing, E-commerce e Social Media Manager Coffee Lover

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