Iced coffee has become synonymous with summertime, and that's thanks in no small part to the genius beverage innovation that is cold brew. For the uninitiated, cold brew is defined as coffee that's brewed without heat over an extended period of time (as opposed to regular iced coffee, which is brewed quickly through hot extraction then cooled down). What results is a highly caffeinated drink that's been steeped in room temperature water for over 12 hours, like a fine wine, with an equally full-bodied taste.
So when we heard that one of our favorite roasters, Stumptown, was whipping up a cold brew infused with nitrogen, we had to see what it was all about. Appropriately named Nitro Cold Brew, the canned drink is made by infusing nitrogen into the brew via a special widget below the cap, which, when opened, launches off a high pressure gas flow that fuses with the brew to create a thick, velvety blend in a matter of seconds.
According to Diane Aylsworth, Stumptown's director of cold brew, the inspiration for the concoction actually came from the beer industry, where nitro beers were becoming increasingly popular. "When our cold brew is infused with nitrogen, it gives it a special creaminess that changes the overall perceived flavor," she tells InStyle. We'd have to agree. Best served cold, and over a glass of ice (pictured above), the coffee tastes equal parts creamy and velvety with a subtle chocolatey finish that renders it capable of being guzzled down in one fell swoop.
Stumptown's Nitro Cold Brew is available now at select cafes and retailers. For a list of locations, visit stumptowncoffee.com.