Cold Brew Recipe - By Dispatch Coffee

Cold Brew Recipe for Coffee

Cold Brew Recipe by Montreal's Dispatch Coffee

Cold brew, when done correctly, is silky and light and sweet. Cold brew, when done incorrectly, can taste like angry dirt water. 

The problem with operating from a single cold brew recipe is that coffee doesn't work that way. Rather than pretend we can give you one recipe to rule them all, we're going to share the easiest recipe we could come up with and teach you how to taste your results and make changes the next time you brew. It’s like tasting a soup and seasoning accordingly.

Here are our suggestions, which have their basis in a considerable amount of coffee science, all dumbed down enough to keep you outside enjoying the sun rather than splitting coffee atoms in the kitchen. 


1. French Press. If you don't have a French Press, we suggest buying a “coffee sock. This will allow you to brew in any container, such as a mason jar. If you want to get really DIY, you can use a large piece of cheesecloth folded over a few times and tied off into a bag with some twine. Feel free to think about your life choices while you do this.

2. Good quality light to medium roast coffee beans, ground coarsely. This is a French Press ground. It should almost look like breadcrumbs.Coffee grounds french press
The grounds should look like breadcrumbs.

3. Boiling water. Ideally, boil cold tap water – your hot water heater has lots of gross stuff in it.
4. Cold tap water. Filtered if possible.
5. [Optional] 1 Pourover brewer with a paper filter


    1. To figure out how much coffee to use, place your container on a scale, fill with water and divide weight by 9. That's how much to use. If you don't have a scale, pour water from the container into measuring cup and divide by 9, since 1mL of water = 1g of water. Yeah, I paid attention in grade 5.

    2. Warm the container (the French Press) with hot water to warm up the container. Discard that water right before you add your coarse ground coffee into your container.

    3. Add just enough water coming off a boil to wet all of the grounds and set a timer for one minute. Stir the grinds the whole time with the goal of exposing all of them equally to hot water. If you're using a coffee sock or a cheesecloth baggie, just bath it in the water. This will open up the pores of the beans, meaning your coffee will be stronger and sweeter.
    Warm water french press cold brewDon't pour your hot water all the way. Use it only to cover the grounds completely

    4. After that one minute, fill the rest of the way with cold water.

    5. Let sit in a fridge for anywhere from 6-24 hours. We suggest starting at 12 hours.  
    When done, plunge the French Press or remove the bag. For better results, filter your brew once or twice through a paper filter, like a Chemex or a V60. This will make your coffee cleaner and sweeter.  This recipe makes a concentrate of coffee to be diluted by half with cold water. Try diluting with milk for a delicious cold latte-style drink. Or drink it straight if you want to feel anxious and weird.

    Cold Brew with Milk
    Diluting with milk makes a sweet refreshing booster drink

      If you're striving to make the best cold brew, consider following the tips below to fine tune your recipe. 

      PRO TIPS

        • When you make coffee, the first elements to come out are acidic, followed by sweet elements and ending with bitter elements. The goal is to take as much sweetness as possible before you get into the bitter territory. 
        • If your coffee is strong and bitter, your brew is sitting for too long, so we suggest brewing for a shorter period of time (start with a few hours shorter). If that doesn't work, you can grind coarser to solve bitterness.
        • If your coffee is weak and acidic, your brew isn't taking long enough, so we suggest brewing for a longer period of time (start with a few hours longer). If that doesn't work, grind finer to solve acidity. You can also extend the time spent in the boiling water to solve sour coffee.
        • If your coffee is really weak, consider leaving it at room temperature for half the brew time before putting it in the fridge. The room temperature will give you more sweetness and body, and finishing in the fridge will keep it from getting bitter.
        • Write down the grind size, amounts of water and coffee and the time of your brew to make your own recipe. The more consistent you are, the more certain you are of having perfect coffee.