I once had a classmate who didn’t understand the difference between iced coffee and cold brew. (Iced coffee is regular ol’ brewed coffee served over ice; cold brew is the much stronger, highly concentrated result of coarse-ground coffee steeping for at least 12 hours.) My classmate figured it out only after chugging a venti Starbucks cold brew in five minutes flat, after which he spent an hour and a half shivering, holding his head, and asking why everyone hated him.
Cold brew is not to be trifled with, but it can make for a fantastic treat if you’re blessed with a high caffeine tolerance. And while quality cold brew can be expensive, it’s actually not hard to make at home. MarketWatch recently checked in with seasoned baristas to publish a list of the essentials.
The list includes a few gadgets, including the AeroPress manual coffee maker, which can produce a darn good cold brew in around two minutes. “I do an AeroPress over ice, using a stronger coffee to water ratio,” one barista told MarketWatch, explaining that the device produces “a unique flavor profile that I feel excited about.” Another coffee mastermind told MarketWatch that homemade cold brew is a cinch—it just requires tweaking the standard pour-over process. That barista opts to brew over ice in a Chemex, a manual pour-over glass coffeemaker popular with coffee connoisseurs.
Finally, if you don’t have the time or energy to make your own cold brew, the baristas recommended a few ready-to-drink coffees including La Colombe’s Triple Draft Latte and Cold Brew on Tap. Check out the full list of gadgets and pre-made coffee recs on MarketWatch.