Chill out with an icy brew

Melbourne’s iced coffee and teaSydney’s iced coffee and tea

Cold coffee has been the cafe star this summer. From cold drip to chilled pour-overs, coffee sparklers and inventive riffs on the affogato, here is our guide to the hottest cold brews and where to drink them.Cold drip

What is it? This is a slow drip-filter infusion using laboratory-like apparatus. Hario, the Japanese Pyrex, makes a cold drip set-up consisting of a beaker with a tap at the bottom that sits over another beaker for the ground coffee. The tap is set to let water flow at the chosen rate – say, one drop a second (very scientific) – on to a filter paper on top of the coffee. Once the filter paper is saturated, water seeps through the grounds and is collected in a third vessel at the bottom. The slow brew time, anywhere from three to 24 hours, and robust ratio of coffee to water (as much as 80 grams to the litre) can produce rich liquor-like flavours.

Sample Coffee’s Reuben Mardan does a quick cold brew, about three hours, with fruity coffees such as Kenyans to produce a cleaner, less boozy cup. Bean Drinking’s Keith Reay uses higher-acidity coffees and Africans like the Kenyans and Rwandans, as cold extraction reduces the acidity in the coffee. The absence of aromatics in coffee served cold – a major component of flavour – means the method works best with clean-flavoured coffees that cut through.

Where to try it: VIC Campos Coffee, Carlton; Industry Beans, Fitzroy; NSW Bean Drinking, Crows Nest; Sample Coffee, Surry Hills.Cold brew

What is it? Ground coffee is immersed in cold water and left to steep for up to 24 hours, either at room temperature or in the fridge, then filtered and served over ice. The Toddy is a purpose-made immersion brew jug with a tap in the bottom and a cloth filter. (It has nothing to do with toddy palms or hot toddies. It was invented in 1964 by a man called Todd.) Aaron Wood, of Seven Seeds, says they brew at a ratio of one part coffee to 10 parts water, then give the coffee a second filtering through V60 papers. The result is clear and sweet, more tea-like, says Wood, and free of the boozy flavours that cold drip produces sometimes. Salvage Specialty Coffee in Artarmon bottles its Toddy brew and keeps it in the fridge ready to go.

Where to try it: VIC Seven Seeds, Carlton; NSW Salvage Specialty Coffee, Artarmon.Cold espresso

What is it? Espresso coffee made the normal way then chilled for serving. In Milan an espresso shot with some sugar stirred in goes into a cocktail shaker with ice and comes out nicely chilled: caffee freddo. At Everyday Coffee in Collingwood, they add sugar syrup and give it a good shake to produce a frothy, cool espresso drink with an interesting savoury sweetness. Kino Verzosa, of Paramount Coffee Project, Sydney, says the baristas there put a double shot of espresso, two cubes of ice and some sugar syrup in a cocktail shaker ”and shake the crap out of it”. The trick is to get it nice and frothy, he says. Copenhagen’s Coffee Collective claims the froth brings out the fruity notes and gives the shakerato, as it is known here, a special mouth feel. Also on the menu at Paramount is the iced long black, made with cold water and ice cubes in the cup first, followed by a double espresso shot.

Where to try it: VIC Everyday Coffee, Collingwood; NSW Paramount Coffee Project, Surry Hills.Cold filter

What is it? Filter coffee brewed hot and then chilled. Everyday Coffee in Collingwood brews filter batches with a Moccamaster automatic drip brewer then plunges carafes of the coffee into ice to cool quickly it before bottling it. Reuben Hills in Sydney brews pourovers with hot water straight on to ice for a chilled filter coffee hit. Paramount Coffee Project’s Kino Verzosa serves the coffee with the ice melted as a fully cold beverage. His recipe: 14-15 grams of coffee, 80 grams of ice in the beaker and 120 grams of hot water poured over the ground coffee.

Where to try it: VIC Everyday Coffee, Collingwood; NSW Reuben Hills, Surry Hills; Paramount Coffee Project, Surry Hills.Sparkler

What is it? A mixture of coffee and chilled sparkling water. Bean Drinking in Crows Nest uses low-sodium sparkling mineral water and cold drip coffee. Keith Reay, of Bean Drinking, says it is less intense and more approachable than some cold drip coffee: the coffee flavours open up to make a refreshing summer drink. Coffee Alchemy in Marrickville serves a cold drip with carbonated water, on tap, while Double Roasters down the road mixes a double espresso shot with tonic water and lots of ice: an interesting mix of bittersweet espresso and sweet-bitter tonic water, with a bit of carbonated sparkle. In Melbourne, Omar and the Marvellous Coffee Bird float a double ristretto of their Black Blend on cold mineral water. ”One gulp. A sensory explosion,” says Andy Gelman, of Omar, while at Reverence Specialty Coffee & Tea, they serve Slow Dance Coffee’s cold brew with sweetened sparkling water to make a summer cooler that is reminiscent of chinotto.

Where to try it: NSW Bean Drinking, Crows Nest; Coffee Alchemy and Double Roasters, Marrickville; VIC Omar & the Marvellous Coffee Bird, Gardenvale; Reverence Specialty Coffee, Ascot Vale.Iced latte

What is it? What it says on the can: a double espresso shot served with chilled milk and ice. This is the drink that coffee-flavoured milk tries to emulate. At Double Roasters, they brew espresso shots, then add chilled milk and ice. St Ali offers a ready-to-go variation with filter-style coffee. They brew batches of something nice and chocolatey and bottle it with fresh biodynamic milk as white and white, with two sugars to go.

Where to try it: Double Roasters, Marickville, NSW; St Ali, Carlton North, South Melbourne and Bondi Beach.Affogato

What is it? The classic Italian version is a shot of espresso over a scoop of vanilla ice-cream, a mix of rich coffee flavours and warm, viscous liquid contrasting with the cold sweetness of the ice-cream, melting into a creamy-milky coffee slurp by the end. Gelato Messina does a great version: a scoop of its vanilla gelato in a glass, with a classic Italian espresso shot on the side – pour it over and get going. Sample Coffee has been pushing the affogato envelope: its Kenji affogato marries condensed-milk ice-cream (from a local Japanese joint) with espresso, while its lamington affogato – a lamington, vanilla-bean ice-cream and a double espresso shot in a glass – has been succeeded this summer by the tiramisu affogato: mascarpone ice-cream and soaked sponge finger biscuits layered with a double espresso shot of the house roast, Pacemaker. In Melbourne, Vincent the Dog pours a shot of Small Batch Candyman over a Ferrero-Rocher-flavoured scoop – delicious.

Where to try it: NSW Sample Coffee, Surry Hills; Cow and the Moon, Enmore; VIC Gelato Messina, Fitzroy; Vincent the Dog, Carlton.


Industry Beans: fifty/fifty The Fitzroy roaster brews batches of cold drip coffee – say, a Nicaragua Finca Limoncillo – and 24-hour cold immersion brew – maybe Mexico Nayarit – then serves both. The idea: sip a little of each to get the flavour differences, then mix to make your own custom cold coffee blend.

Bean Drinking: Arnold Palmer The Arnold Palmer (iced tea and lemonade) gets a  Coffea arabica reboot at Bean Drinking in Crows Nest: the tea is substituted with an infusion of cascara (coffee cherry pulp), while the lemonade is Bean Drinking’s own homemade version.

St Ali: Cold drip negroni A coffee cocktail, with cold drip coffee adding Punt e Mes-like extra bitterness to the negroni’s usual Campari, gin and vermouth mix.