Cold brew coffee is a drink that has been growing in popularity over the past few years. It’s unlike traditional iced coffee because cold brew coffee is brewed for hours, not minutes. This results in a smoother and less acidic taste profile than your typical cup of joe. Nitro Cold Brew takes this even further by introducing nitrous into the equation to create what many consider to be the “perfect form” of cold brew coffee.
In this article, we will list everything you need to make nitro cold brew at home as well as how it works and why it might be worth switching from hot brewed coffee or iced coffee drinks like frappuccinos or lattes!
Part One: The Ingredients
The most important ingredient in the nitro cold brew is coffee. It should be a dark roast and ideally ground coarsely to create an ultra-concentrated flavor. You will also need water, vodka (or other spirits), sugar or honey, ice cubes, cheesecloth or paper towel for straining the coffee grounds, and two glasses with their rims rubbed down with lemon juice to prevent them from becoming cloudy when poured over the nitrous.
Part Two: The Equipment
There are two pieces of equipment that you will need in order to make nitro cold brew coffee. These are a filter setup and an airtight container with a tap system on it which is often called a keg or growler. Some people use mason jars for this purpose, but these aren’t always the best choice as they can break easily if not handled properly. Alternatively, there are companies that sell specialized containers made specifically for brewing nitro coffee at home like our own GrowlTap™!
The first piece of equipment we recommend is a cheesecloth or paper towel set up where you place your ground coffee inside and then soak them in water before adding vodka and sugar (or honey). You can then put the coffee filter in a container like a bucket or pitcher and pour out your ground coffee. This will allow you to get rid of all the grounds which makes for an easier clean up process afterward as well.
The second piece of equipment we recommend is an airtight container with a tap system on it made from either glass, stainless steel, plastic, or ceramic materials that are only used for nitro cold brew coffee brewing purposes. Ideally, this type of container should be able to hold two liters worth of liquid (roughly eight cups) while still being tall enough for foam to rise inside without spilling over when you open the spout at eye-level height. The best material choice is glass because it is inert and won’t react with the coffee like plastic or metal might. Glass also provides a clear view of what’s going on inside so you can see if there are any clogs in your foam, which could lead to an overflow situation when opening the tap.
The third piece of equipment we recommend is something called a nitro cold brew tower holder, sometimes referred to as a draft beer faucet that will attach directly onto this type of container/brewer system for dispensing nitro coffee once complete (although not all systems require one). Nitrogen gas needs to be added at regular intervals during brewing process due to its explosive properties with oxygen (see notes about safety below), whereas CO₂ does not pose the same risk.
Finally, nitro coffee is more expensive than regular cold brew because the process requires a lot of time and effort. The equipment used to make it can also be pricey in order for you to get quality results (such as an SS-304 keg or container). And then there’s that final step where gas needs to be added throughout the brewing process—you might need someone with technical expertise on hand if this isn’t something you’re familiar with already.
Nitrogen dioxide (NO₂) is lighter than oxygen and will settle at higher levels during fermentation; thus, when opening any tank containing nitrogenous material such as beer, wine, soda pop etc., always open from the bottom while holding your breath.
You will need to start with high-quality beans, coarse ground for immersion brewers; use filtered water heated to around 195°F (91°C) degrees before adding it to the coffee grounds; let it steep for about four hours before plunging and filtering as usual.
You will need a nitro tap, CO₂ tank, gas regulator with gauge (or some other means of measuring the pressure), keg or container, stout faucet with lever attached to handle (though some prefer using a ball-lock type coupler). You’ll also want an adjustable flow spout that accommodates different size cups and glasses. When you’re ready to serve your nitro cold brew, hook up the nitrogenated beer line from the CO₂ cylinder through a gasketed fitting into eventually connects to both ends of the draft tower in order to build enough internal pressure on one side so that the nitrogenated beer will flow under pressure and come out of the stout faucet on the other side.
Now you have all the info you need on how to make nitro cold brew at home. There are many reasons behind its wonderful taste: it has less acidity because it doesn’t use hot water; nitrogen brings out complex malt, yeast and fruit notes not found in regular iced coffees; brewers can experiment with new techniques like adding dark roasts which would normally be too heavy for this.