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I love the taste of coffee, yes, but part of its appeal is the ritual. There aren’t many things in life where I’d rather choose the less efficient route, but I’ll pass on a coffee pod any day to make a manual cup. I love the process of picking up a bag of beans from a small local roaster. Grinding them to the perfect level of fineness or coarseness depending on the day’s preferred brewing method. Waiting for my stovetop kettle to heat up to the precise temperature before pouring it over my French press. Adding a peak of frothed milk or a drizzle of maple syrup. Then, inhaling the freshly brewed aroma to start my day.
During the spring and summer (aka iced coffee season), I always thought I lost some of that ritual. I tried cold brew bags and soaking grounds in a mason jar, but the result was a thick, sludge-filled mess. So, when the warmer months set in, inevitably I’d pick up a bottle of cold brew from the local farmers market each week and pour it in a glass with a few cubes. Easy, but not exactly cost-effective — and totally missing that hands-on connection to making a perfectly brewed cup of coffee.
Then, thanks to my iced coffee aficionado brother-in-law, I discovered this OXO Brew Cold Brew Coffee Maker. This countertop appliance steeps grounds overnight and, in the morning, pours out perfectly concentrated coffee, ready for the fridge. And I get to work my ritual and routine back in. Once a week (or every few days if it’s that kind of week), I clean the kitchen after dinner, pull out a bag of beans, and grind them to a coarse, cold-brew ready texture. I add the ground coffee to the upper portion of the coffee maker — no filter needed — and close the top, which has holes that allow water to seep in slowly and evenly. I pour water over the top and let it sit overnight as the cold brew magic happens.
In the morning, I’m greeted by 32 ounces of cold brew concentrate, ready to be released into the carafe below. Flip the lever and the smooth, delicious coffee flows through. It’s a ritual that feels as intentional as making a pour-over.
A few ice cubes clinking in a glass, perhaps a swirl of flavored syrup, a splash of milk or water, and I have my morning routine. You can store the carafe of coffee concentrate directly in the fridge for up to two weeks or, if I’m feeling fancy, I like to store mine in a glass bottle with a stopper. An added bonus: I don’t miss spending $12 weekly on cold brew concentrate.