espresso-bean-for-coldbrew-darlocoffee

Cold brew coffee is fast becoming the preferred coffee beverage of young people. In 2015, Starbucks began including cold brew coffee in their menu. Small coffee shops took their cue and started concocting their very own cold brew coffee recipe. Today, every major city in the world has at least one coffee shop that offers cold brew coffee.

You do not need to line up at your favorite coffee shop to get a great cold brew coffee, however. You can make the beverage yourself. There are only two very important ingredients to an excellent cup of cold brew. These are the choice of coffee beans and the correct length of time for the cold brewing process. 

Most people believe that cold brewing is a time-consuming process. And they are right. Cold brew coffee takes at least 12 hours to complete. This is an unusually long time to wait for a good cup of cold coffee.

What many people do is they prepare the coffee well ahead of time. They steep the coffee grounds in either cold water or tap water the day before they consume the beverage. They can pour the coffee concentrate into a cup the following day and add an equal amount of water or milk. Voila! A good cup of cold brew coffee.

One thing you should never do is to confuse cold brew coffee with iced coffee. The latter involves hot brewing coffee grounds before they get poured over ice. An authentic cold brew coffee should undergo a minimum of 12 hours of steeping or brewing in tap or cold water.

The length of time of steeping is crucial in the extraction of the full flavors of coffee. That is why it is also very important to choose the coffee beans wisely. You will want to enjoy a cold brew that has the best possible flavor profile and none of the bitterness of traditional hot brews. Above all, you do not want a very acidic coffee that can upset your stomach. 

As such, we are sharing with you 8 of what we believe to be the best coffee beans for cold brew.

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1. Our #1 Pick: Death Wish Organic USDA Certified Whole Bean Coffee

Death Wish is a company that is famous for producing blends that have a high caffeine content. What is most amazing is that their products are never acidic or taste bitter. You get the caffeine kick you want in a cold brew without harming your stomach or leaving a bitter taste in your palate.

The Death Wish Whole Bean Coffee makes an excellent choice for cold brewing. It gives you an amazing coffee flavor without having to worry about a bitter taste or upsetting your tummy. The company utilizes choice USDA-certified organic beans from the Arabica and Robusta varieties to give you a beverage worthy of the best coffee shops in the world. You will love the hints of chocolate and cherry like we did.

Our only issue is that the Death Wish can be very expensive on a per ounce basis. But hey, with all that caffeine you get without the risk of developing hyperacidity, this is an exceptional product to use in your next cold brewing adventure.

Things We Like

  • Certified by the USDA as organic
  • A good blend of Arabica and Robusta
  • Does not taste bitter
  • All-natural formulation
  • Notes of chocolate and cherry

Things We Dislike

  • A bit expensive

2. Stone Street Coffee Cold Brew Reserve Colombian Supremo Whole Bean Coffee

Stone Street makes artisan coffee roasters that the company sources only from the best coffee producers in the world. Its Columbian Supremo Whole Bean Coffee is one such product. You get coffee beans that are beyond perfect when it comes to cold brew coffee.

The Supremo is one of the world’s most delicious Arabica variety. You get a cup of coffee that is less acidic than other brands. Your palate will also be washed with the full flavors of the dark roasted coffee beans. It is strong, yet provides the perfect balance of caffeine and sweetness that registers in the brain as something delightful.

Some people say the coffee is too strong for their liking and that it had a bitter taste. We believe this is very subjective. The Stone Street coffee we tested never had a bitter taste. We believe this product is great for making an excellent cold brew. Plus, you get to keep the freshness of the beans because of its resealable bag.

Things We Like

  • Single-origin coffee beans
  • Had a very lovely and well-balanced flavor
  • Very smooth with a slight sweetness
  • Comes with a resealable bag
  • Not bitter

Things We Dislike

  • Some people may find it a bit too strong and bitter

3. Real Good Coffee Company Breakfast Blend Light Roast Whole Bean Coffee

Real Good Coffee is a Seattle company that aims to produce a variety of coffee products that appeal to coffee lovers everywhere. One of the company’s most sought-after products is the Breakfast Blend Light Roast Coffee Beans. These beans come from the hills of coffee plantations of Central and South America. Real Good Coffee roasts the beans fresh in Seattle before they get distributed all over the world.

The coffee is surprisingly rich. When cold brewed, you get the hint of citrus flooding your palate. There are also notes of decadent milk chocolate and rich cream. You will not get to flood your nostrils with these aromas, however. Your brain will. 

The issue with a light roast is that it tends to be more acidic than dark roasted beans. This can spell trouble for people with existing acid problems. However, the Breakfast Blend should be a great way to welcome every morning. It gives you that caffeine you need with very minimal bitterness on your tongue and palate.

Things We Like

  • Excellent coffee flavor
  • Has notes of cream and milk chocolate
  • Comes with hints of citrus
  • A very versatile blend
  • Sourced from reputable growers

Things We Dislike

  • Tends to be more acidic than dark roasted beans

4. Tiny Footprint Coffee Organic Cold Brew Cold Press Elixir

Tiny Footprint is one of those companies that offer exciting coffee blends for cold brewing. Their Cold Brew Cold Press Elixir is superb when it comes to delivering Starbucks-busting cold brew coffee.

This is a product that combines the wonderful aromas and flavors of dark roasts with the right caffeine levels of light roasts. The addition of Ethiopian Arabica beans complements the overall flavor profile of the cold brew. It lends a silky richness to your drink. It has the body of cocoa and the tones of flowers and fruits.

The only problem we see with the Cold Press Elixir is the minimum brewing time. Cold brewing requires a minimum of 12 hours. The Cold Press Elixir requires at least 18 hours. This time frame is critical to making a fabulous cold brew coffee. And for that, we admire Tiny Footprint for being honest enough to tell its customers of the best way to create a cold brew.

Things We Like

  • Specific for cold brew coffee
  • Excellent coffee flavor and richness
  • Safe and USDA-certified organic
  • A blend of Ethiopian Arabica in both light and dark roast
  • Can contribute to carbon emissions reduction

Things We Dislike

  • Minimum cold brewing time is 18 hours

5. Cold Brew Lab Organic Colombian Supremo Whole Bean Coffee

People are flocking to New York to get their hands on one of the finest artisan coffee roasts on the planet – the Cold Brew Lab Organic Colombian Supremo Whole Bean Coffee. This product makes a wonderful ingredient in your cold brew adventure.

The coffee beans make delicious cold brew coffee. It is what you can expect from using Arabica Supremo beans harvested in Colombia. The USDA also certifies these beans to be organic, so you can feel safe about drinking it. What we find interesting about this product is it combines medium and dark roasts. You get an amazing cup of coffee that is rich and bold and never bitter or acidic.

The Cold Brew Lab coffee beans are fantastic. Too bad the company cannot improve on the design or the quality of its packaging. If they can address this issue, we are certain that more people will buy the Cold Brew Lab coffee beans. After all, it is an amazing blend.

Things We Like

  • Does not contain harsh chemicals
  • Contains a good blend of dark and medium roasts 
  • Nice combination of smooth and bold flavors
  • Less acidic than other brands
  • Single-origin coffee beans

Things We Dislike

  • Packaging needs improvement

6. The Chosen Bean Premium Artisan Cold Brew Whole Coffee Beans

If you want to taste the different coffees of the major coffee-producing nations of the world, then The Chosen Bean Premium Artisan is for you. This is a bag that includes only the choicest coffee beans from Ethiopia, Indonesia, Mexico, and Guatemala. You get the interesting flavor profiles of these coffee bean varieties in a single bag.

The notes of sweet oranges, coco, berries, and spices complement the coffee beans’ chocolatey and nutty undertones. You get a cold brew coffee that has a light body and a very smooth taste. Best of all, you will never have to worry about upsetting your tummy. 

Not everyone agrees that The Chosen Bean makes excellent coffee, however. Some say the cold brew coffee that the product makes is way too strong. We think that you can always dilute it with an equal amount of milk. This is an amazing blend that should give you a very rich, albeit complex flavors.

Things We Like

  • Includes choice coffee beans from major coffee-producing nations
  • Combines dark-medium and light-medium roasts
  • Less acidic than other brands
  • Provides hints of citrus with a nutty undertone
  • Sweet and smooth taste with a light body

Things We Dislike

  • A bit strong for some people

7. Bluestone Lane Flagstaff Whole Bean Coffee

Bluestone Lane puts the Aussie coffee drinking experience into a bag of coffee beans for Americans and the rest of the world to enjoy. The Flagstaff features a unique 60-40 blend of Brazilian and Colombian Arabica. These are two of the world’s finest and most delicious coffee bean varieties.

The Flagstaff offers a drink that has hints of sweet and decadent milk chocolate and creamy vanilla. There are also the earthy and nutty undertones of roasted almonds to give your coffee a more interesting profile. Like all coffee beans used for cold brewing, the Flagstaff is perfect for people who may have issues with hyperacidity. 

We do find the Flagstaff to be a bit pricier than other artisan brands. Its flavor profile does not justify its price. However, this product remains a wise choice for people who want a good cup of cold brew coffee that will never upset their stomach or make them tasting bitterness in their palates the rest of the day.

Things We Like

  • A good blend of Brazilian and Colombian Arabica coffee beans
  • Very nice flavors
  • Comes with hints of milk chocolate, vanilla, and almond
  • Less acidic
  • Nice packaging 

Things We Dislike

  • A bit more expensive

8. Cooper’s Cask Coffee Guatemalan Coffee Beans

Coffee lovers who want a medium roast should try the Guatemalan Coffee Beans of Cooper’s Cask Coffee. This is a small artisan roaster that provides excellent coffee by roasting coffee beans in small batches. The practice helps the company better control the quality of their products, especially the flavor profile.

Guatemalan coffee beans are known for their delicious flavor and mild acidity. They are very delicious, offering a unique aroma of creamy caramel and milk chocolate. You will know that you have an excellent cup of cold brew in your hands when the hints of sweet oranges start flooding your brain. The beverage is never bitter. 

Medium roast should neither be too strong nor too light. Unfortunately, there are some people who think that the medium roast of Cooper’s Cask is more on the lighter side of things. Again, it is all a matter of perspective. Our honest opinion is that the Cooper’s Cask Guatemalan Coffee Beans are great for making cold brew coffee.

Things We Like

  • Very smooth and sweet flavor
  • Does not taste very acidic
  • Not bitter
  • Made of single-origin coffee beans
  • Hints of orange balanced with notes of caramel and milk chocolate

Things We Dislike

  • Can be a bit too ‘light’ for some people

II. Coffee Beans for Cold Brew Buyer’s Guide

best-bean-for-cold-brew-Darlocoffee

Our sense of taste is very subjective. One person can consider a certain cup of coffee as excellent, while another may have a very different opinion. That is why it is important to understand the different factors that can influence the flavor of cold brew coffee. The following are some of the most important factors that you must carefully think about before buying your next bag of coffee bean.

Single-origin Beans or Blends?

Coffee beans come in 4 different types. Arabica and Robusta are the more popular ones. Liberica and Excelsa are less common. Each of these has its own distinct flavor profile. Arabica is aromatic, has a smoother taste, and has lower caffeine content than Robusta.

Terroir can also influence the qualities of the coffee beans. Brazilian and Colombian Arabica are more delicious and have a richer flavor profile than Indonesian or Indian Arabica. Indian Arabica also tends to be more acidic than other coffee varieties. 

Given that there are tens of varieties of coffee beans around the world, using a blend in cold brew can give you a very different experience than using a single-origin bean. 

If you are preparing an espresso, a blend is ideal. However, whenever making cold brew coffee, only a single-origin coffee bean will suffice. This allows you to extract the unique flavor profile of the coffee beans that are exclusive to a region.

Light Roast or Dark Roast?

The taste of coffee is dependent on the degree of roasting of the coffee beans. Coffee beans are colored green when harvested. They are soft and have little to no taste at all. That is why coffee manufacturers must roast these fresh coffee beans. Roasting turns the raw produce into coffee beans that are crunchy, flavorful, and very aromatic. Read more about The level-of-coffee-roasting here.

A very rough guide to determining the level of roasting undergone by coffee beans is their color. This can range from light to dark and even extra-dark. The longer the coffee beans are roasted, the darker they appear. 

Light roasts have a light brown color. They have a more pronounced coffee flavor. Unfortunately, light roasts tend to be more acidic, too. 

Medium roasts have a medium brown color. They have a more balanced profile when it comes to aroma, acidity, and flavor. This type of roast also tends to have less caffeine than light roasts.

Medium-dark roasts possess a darker and richer color. It has a somewhat spicy taste and a more noticeable roasted coffee bean aroma and flavor.

Dark roasts look like chocolate in color. Some variants have a black color. You get more of the flavor and aroma of the roasting process and less of the original coffee flavor and aroma profile. In most cases, they have a smoky aroma and a bitter taste.

Smoothness

One very important aspect of the cold brewing process is the size of the coffee grounds. Please understand that cold brewing requires at least 12 hours to complete. Using finely ground coffee beans can shorten this brewing process and leave you with a very different kind of cold brew drinking experience. 

It is ideal to use coarsely ground coffee beans. The larger size of the individual coffee grounds will favor the steeping process. It allows cold water to work its way through the coffee grounds in a very slow and deliberate manner. This ensures the best possible extraction of the coffee flavors without the acidity and bitterness of hot brew. 

Read more about The level of Coffee Ground Size here.

Incubation Time

Steeping coffee grounds for a cold brew requires a period of at least 12 hours and a maximum of 24 hours. If you soak your coffee grounds beyond the 24-hour mark, there is a tendency that your drink will become more acidic. If you steep the grounds in less than 12 hours, there is also a chance that you will have water that has a hint of coffee in it.

Our recommendation is to experiment in batches. You can steep the first batch for 12 hours. Drink the batch and take note of your observations. Steep the succeeding batches in increasing amounts of time, starting at 13 hours until you get to the 24-hour mark. Compare your observations and decide which of these is best suited to your taste.


III. Conclusion

Choosing the right coffee beans is one of the most important aspects of making a perfect cold brew. Unfortunately, a cold brew recipe may already be perfect for you, but not to another individual. That is why we strongly suggest that you take a more methodical approach. 

Do not be afraid to experiment with different coffee bean varieties. Check which between Arabica and Robusta you prefer. You can also check the country of origin where you find the flavor profile of coffee beans to be closer to your preferences. 

Try experimenting with different levels of coarseness of the grounds for each coffee bean variety. You can also experiment steeping or brewing them in different number of hours. Sooner or later, you will be able to determine the best formula that is more attuned to your taste buds.

The perfect cold brew coffee should bring you several benefits. People say that cold brew coffee brings peace. And they are right. This has got something to do with the unique profile of the beverage compared to hot brews.

Cold brew is less acidic. It feels a lot lighter and friendlier to the tummy when consumed. It also does not taste as bitter as hot coffee. This will be a great benefit for people who prefer a genuine coffee flavor without the bitter aftertaste. While you do not use your nose to smell the aroma of cold brew coffee, your brain will paint a very vivid picture of how wonderful its aroma is. 

Cold brew also offers greater versatility. You can make iced coffee or even hot coffee using the cold brew concentrate. You can make soda and cocktails as well as a cold brew version of a latte. The possibilities are infinite.

Many people consider cold brew coffee as essentially better than hot coffee. What about you?

The 8 Best Coffee Beans for Cold Brew

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