With living in an apartment this summer, I have had the opportunity to embark on a coffee-inspired journey in which I brew various types of coffee. So far, I have brewed hot coffee; iced coffee; and cold-brew coffee. Of the three, hot coffee and cold-brew have been, without a doubt, my absolute favorite. However, which one do I prefer more? Below, I compare the two based on the following criteria: preparation time, the amount of ground coffee grains required to prepare it, overall taste, and the lasting effect on me.
Preparation Time (Using a French press)
Hot Coffee: It takes ten minutes to prepare hot coffee. Five minutes of this time is boiling water in the kettle, and the other five minutes is allowing the coffee to steep in the French press. That is it. Once these two steps are done, the hot coffee is ready to be poured and enjoyed.
Cold-brew Coffee: Cold-brew coffee takes a significantly longer time. In fact, it takes twelve to twenty-four hours for cold-brew coffee to be correctly prepared. You prepare cold-brew coffee by putting 2/3 cup of ground coffee grains and three cups of room-temperature water into the French press. Then, you store it in the fridge for twelve to twenty-four hours so the coffee may steep. After that, you press the coffee grains down, and it is good to go!
So, hot coffee easily trumps cold-brew coffee based on the first criteria.
The Amount Required
Hot Coffee: This all depends on how much you make. For a French press, it is advised to use two tablespoons of ground coffee grains for every six ounces of water. For me, I only use five ounces, which is just enough to fill my coffee cup, so I use one and a half tablespoon of ground coffee grains. I like this a lot because I am able to make a small bag of Verena Street Cow Tipper coffee last a month.
Cold-brew Coffee: Cold-brew coffee is drastically more. As I wrote above, it takes 2/3 cup of ground coffee grains and three cups of room-temperature water to prepare the cold-brew coffee. This depletes your coffee supply rather quickly. Which, as a poor college student, is NOT the most ideal or preferred method.
Once again, hot coffee is triumphant.
You may be puzzled by this because you may think all coffee tastes the same. You, my good sir or madam, are wrong. Coffee tastes entirely different based on the way you make it, the roast you use, and the flavor. I, personally, use medium roast coffee from Verena Street. However, even though I use the same type of coffee, the hot coffee tastes completely different than the cold-brew coffee.
Hot Coffee: I consider hot coffee to be less flavorful and have less of a caffeine kick. I honestly believe hot coffee is lacking in the taste category, which is a shame because I drink it every morning. It is just, well, dull. Don’t get me wrong, it still tastes delicious, but, still.
Cold-brew Coffee: On the contrary, cold-brew coffee is bold, packed with flavor, and downright delicious. Every gulp sends my taste buds into a frenzy. I think this has to do with the amount of time you allow the coffee to steep in the water. While the hot coffee steeps for five minutes, the cold-brew steeps for twelve to twenty-four hours. This allows the coffee to fully infuse with the water and give it that outstanding taste.
Without a doubt, cold-brew coffee is the undisputed winner when it comes to overall taste.
Since I have been drinking coffee every day for the past three and a half years, I really have developed a high tolerance to the caffeine. This is a good and a bad thing. It is good because it is just an excuse for me to have another cup of coffee. But, it is a bad thing because it is just an excuse for me to have another cup of coffee… which I know, for a fact, is not good for my health. The sacrifices I make for coffee.
Hot Coffee: It has little to no effect on me. I can have a cup of hot coffee at 7:00 a.m. (07:00) but will be exhausted and wanting a nap by 8:00 a.m. (08:00). I honestly only drink hot coffee in the morning for the taste and the warm sensation because the caffeine has no effect on me.
Cold-brew Coffee: This makes me wired. In fact, when I made it for the first time, I ended up drinking the whole French press worth. By the time I got to work an hour later, my hands were slightly shaking from the amount of caffeine I ingested. What is more, the shaking lasted well over an hour, then I was finally able to come down from the caffeine high.
It is quite obvious that cold-brew coffee is significantly better than hot coffee when it comes to the lasting effect.
Both the hot coffee and the cold-brew coffee have their positives and their negatives. The former is easy and fast to make, and the ground coffee grains required is the minimum. However, the taste does not blow my mind, and it has hardly an effect on me. The latter has what is arguably the best taste and makes me wired, but it takes a ridiculous amount of ground coffee grains and time to prepare.
When taking everything into account, I truly believe that the cold-brew coffee takes the cake. Yes, it can be a nuisance to prepare and costs a pretty penny, but it is absolutely delicious and has the effect that coffee is supposed to. I give my full recommendation to you all to try the cold-brew coffee. If you either don’t have a French press or just don’t want to go through the process of making it, head to a local (so, not a corporate coffee company) coffee shop and order it. You will be very impressed if you are a coffee lover like me.
– Kyle Majerus