Iced in a cup, sure, but also in a bottle, jug, or growler. A survey of summer’s most transportable and highly caffeinated cold brews (not just Folgers stuck in the fridge, but grounds steeped in room-temperature water for 12 to 24 hours, producing a smooth, low-acid concentrate).
This story appeared in the June 4, 2012 issue of New York Magazine.
16 Suffolk St., nr. Rivington St. (212-358-0500)
This grocer cold-presses its organic fair-trade beans with alkaline water, passes the coffee through unbleached filters, and sells it in 7-ounce compostable “bio bottles” ($3). Also delicious: its creamy Café Latte Smoothie ($4) with “mylk”—a blend of cashews, hemp seeds, dates, coconut sugar, Irish moss, and Himalayan salt.
in the Ace Hotel
, 18 W. 29th St., nr. Broadway (212-679-2222)
Pour your Red Hook–brewed and –bottled house-blend Stubby ($4 for 10.5 ounces) over ice, or swig it straight from the bottle for a toasty chocolate bite with hints of ripened cherry. Growlers are in the works for big-fan restaurateurs (like Pok Pok
’s Andy Ricker).
La Colombe Pure Black
Various locations (lacolombe.com
Pure Black–olytes include chef Nobu Matsuhisa and the guys behind Freemans
. It’s no wonder why: Co-founder Todd Carmichael double-filters his Corsica-blend coffee after steeping it for 16 hours in stainless-steel wine tanks. Bottles sell for $3 apiece in-store and by the two-pack or case at lacolombe.com. So smooth and sweet, it hardly needs milk.
Saturdays 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Hester Street Fair
, Essex St. at Hester St.
At Grumpy’s cold-brew bar, request the Brazilian Cafundo-bean concentrate alone over ice (pictured center), stirred with Battenkill Valley Creamery milk, or mixed with seltzer in a tingly “coffee soda” ($3.50 to $4). Bottles of concentrate cost $15 for 16 ounces and $12 for refills.
Grady’s Cold Brew
Saturdays 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Smorgasburg, N. 6th St. at the East River
This fast-expanding Brooklyn company adds chicory to locally roasted Porto Rico Importing Co. beans for increased sweetness. Concentrate is $8 for 16 ounces and $15 for 32 ounces (plus a $2 bottle deposit). Dilute with water or, for a creamy café au lait effect, 2 percent milk.
19 Charles Street
The West Village gourmet-food-delivery service, which offers one-liter bottles of chicory-spiked Porto Rico cold brew ($15 plus $3 refundable deposit), will introduce Saturday drop-offs in the Hamptons this summer. When fashioning at home, dilute the concentrate with water, whole milk, and a splash of half-and-half.
This concentrate is meant to be served with equal parts filtered water, over ice (milk optional), but the foursome behind it also suggests folding the cold brew into gravies, old-fashioned cocktails, or even peanut-butter-banana smoothies. Thirty-two-ounce bottles are $27 apiece, and there’s a two-bottle delivery minimum.
Photo: Erin D Keeffe
The Queens Kickshaw
40-17 Broadway, Astoria (718-777-0913)
The cafe offers 24-hour cold-brewed coffee from a tap ($8 for a liter plus $3 for a first-time bottle deposit), right alongside its craft beers; the rotating menu of single-origin beans are sourced from Coffee Lab Roasters in Tarrytown. Coming in June: 64-ounce cold-brew growlers (from $20).
156 Mott St., nr. Grand St. (212-966-8883)
The downtown grocer cold-brews Stumptown’s espresso-based Hairbender blend for twelve hours before pouring it into 32- and 64-ounce growlers; you pay a onetime $4.25 or $4.75 growler fee, respectively, and $8 or $15 for refills. The complex concentrate is just strong enough to account for ice meltage; no need to add water.
5 E. 27th St., nr. Fifth Ave. (212-686-1444) Buy a 64-ounce jug of this velvety, caramelesque brew, this month featuring a 50-50 blend of Honduran and Brazilian beans, for $20, and every refill thereafter is $15. Birch also makes Manhattan deliveries via a trike that ferries up to 30 bottles at a time ($3 extra).