Category Archives: Caffeine

Drip Vs. Immersion Cold Brew

We had a request from one of our viewers to do a taste  test comparing a full immersion cold brew and a slow drip cold brew. And you know we can’t say no to a cup of coffee! So we brewed up the same coffee with the two different methods to see what the result was!Cold Brew

What is full immersion cold brew you ask? This is probably the method of cold brew extraction you are most familiar with. It can be as crude as filling up a bucket with coffee and water and letting it sit or you can use something like the Toddy or OXO! (We were really impressed with the OXO, check out our taste test if you haven’t already!) So just as the name implies, the coffee and water sit together for a period of time before filtering and then drinking.

So then what is drip cold brew? Using a slow drip cold brew system is a little more involved, both in the equipment necessary as well as technique involved. Essentially you have your water slowly drip over your coffee grounds. And when we say slowly, we mean it! We are talking about a drip per second. The water slowly saturates the ground coffee, which then drips down through a filter and into your collection container.

We were curious about how the two methods would change the taste of the coffee. Here is a little spoiler, the taste difference was much more pronounced than we could have imagined! Check out the video below to see the result!

 

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Crew Review: CamelBak Forge Travel Mugs

CamelBak Forge Travel MugAhh, the great outdoors. There truly isn’t anything better than that first breath of fresh air before embarking on an outdoor adventure. Or is there? The answer of course is yes, yes there is something better (and it involves coffee!)

That’s right, we are talking about travel mugs today! And more specifically, the CamelBak Forge travel mugs. We are quite fond of this mug. Sure it works great for commuting to work in the morning. But we think it is even more fitting when “forging” a trail, hot coffee in hand. And speaking of hot coffee, the CamelBak Forge travel mug does an excellent job at keeping your coffee hot! The double wall, stainless steel body keeps your hot coffee hot (or your cold, cold brew…well, cold).

Be sure to watch our Crew Review below to see the results of our temperature test! (Spoiler alert: it does an superb job!)

One of the best features on this travel mug is the self sealing lid. Say goodbye to accidental spills! The lid also comes apart for easy cleaning in all the nooks and crannies. The CamelBak Forge Travel mug comes in two color schemes. Solid black or stainless steel and blue!

Check out our Crew Review video below for the full scoop!

 

Crew Review: AeroPress

AeroPressIt’s portable. It’s affordable. And some might even call it adorable! Yes, we are talking about the AeroPress by Aerobie.

The AeroPress is a clever alternative way to brew up your cup of coffee. It functions in a similar fashion to a French Press, but with a twist! When you plunge the AeroPress, the coffee is forced through a paper (or stainless steel) filter. Leaving you with a very clean cup of coffee.

It’s great for traveling since it is lightweight. All that you need is some coffee and hot water to complete your set up.  The AeroPress is built in the U.S.A and is B.P.A. free. Win win? We think so.

The AeroPress makes a stout cup of coffee that some say resembles “espresso”, without the crema of course. Not traditional espresso, but a very strong cup. But the real beauty in this coffee maker is how much control you have when brewing. If you like to brew up a strong concentrate and dilute it like an americano, you can. If you prefer to make a medium strong cup of coffee and mix with half and half, the choice is yours.

We love our AeroPress. And think you will too! Check out our full Crew Review video below before subscribing to our YouTube channel. Come on, we know you want too :)

How To Ice Brew Coffee

Ice BrewIt’s summer. Which means iced coffee of course!

But we think iced coffee should be more than just hot coffee poured over ice. If you have been following our YouTube channel you know that we have been experimenting with different ways to get that coffee we know and love, ice cold.

We have experimented with cold brew, which is amazingly smooth, but takes up to 24 hours to brew! Luckily we found out about this Japanese Cold Brew method, or sometimes referred to as ice brew!

We made some great coffee using this ice brew method. It’s as easy as making a cup of pour over except you substitute half of your brewing water with ice. As a result, you brew concentrated coffee directly onto ice, which instantly cools your coffee–locking in all the flavor. Trust us when we say, you need to try this!

Watch the video below to see Gail demonstrate how to brew using the ice brew method! And don’t forget to subscribe to our YouTube Channel by clicking here. We publish a new video every day of the week, so we are confident there will be something for you ;)

 

 

 

 

Brewin’ With Brandi: Hearty Vegetarian Coffee Chili

Brandi is back with a brand new recipe! And a super tasty one at that!

We all get busy during the week, and this is a great dinner recipe that is easy to put together and all ready for you when you get home from a long day at work! Plus, there is coffee in it. What more can you ask for!

Watch this Brewin’ With Brandi below to see how to make your very own Hearty Vegetarian Coffee Chili! Be sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel as well!

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup bulgur wheat
  • 1 medium yellow onion
  • 2 cups sliced mushrooms
  • 1/2 cup red bell pepper
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 cup vegetable broth
  • 1 cup strong coffee
  • 1 14 oz. can diced tomatoes
  • 1 14 oz. can kidney beans
  • 1 14 oz. can pinto beans
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon red cayenne pepper
  • 1 Bay leaf
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

Toppings:

  • Sour Cream
  • Cilantro
  • Spring Onions
  • Cheddar Cheese

Directions: 

First, pour boiling water over the bulgar and allow it to soak for 15 minutes before straining.

While the bulgar is soaking, prep your vegetables. How finely you dice your vegetables depends on how chunky you like your chili. Feel free to experiment!

Drain and rinse your beans before adding all the ingredients to your slow cooker and stir to combine. Cook on low for 8 hours or high for 4 hours. Season with salt and pepper again before serving.

Top with your choice of toppings! And enjoy!

 

Brewin’ With Brandi : Irish Whiskey Float

Happy St. Patrick’s Day everybody!Irish Whiskey Float

We here at Seattle Coffee Gear are all wearing our obligatory green and drinking our whiskey laced espresso beverages. Are you green with envy yet? Ok, maybe we aren’t drinking just yet but Brandi has a recipe for you if you feel so inclined. It’s sweet, creamy, and infused with the happy juice.

The Irish Whiskey Float is a great way to end a meal this St. Patricks Day. What is not to love in a drink that combines vanilla ice cream, espresso and whiskey? Watch the video below as Brandi and Leslie whip up a couple adult beverages. The recipe is listed below as well. It makes 1 drink so duplicate as many times as need :) Oh, and if you liked this recipe check out some of Brandi’s past videos here.

 

Irish Whiskey Float

Ingredients:

  • 2 scoops Vanilla Bean Ice Cream
  • Double shot of Espresso
  • 1 ounce Irish Whiskey

Instructions:

Start by brewing your favorite espresso. Set shots aside to cool slightly.

Add two scoops of vanilla ice cream to your glass.

Add the espresso and Irish Whiskey to the glass. And enjoy (responsibly)!

The Sun Will Come Out With Cold Brew!

In follow-up to our test video that we posted yesterday, we thought we’d break down and compare the different cold brew options we have — including the Sowden / Hario / Bodum variety and more!


French Press
Dual purpose for hot and cool drinks, making cold brew in your french press will give you that kick in your pants all summer long. Whether you make it as a coffee concentrate to dilute or if you drink it STRONG like the SCG crew, all it takes is your desired amount of coffee, cold water and 12 hours in the fridge. This is great for making a big batch and stocking it up so it’s available whenever you need a cup o’ cold joe.

Sowden Soft Brew Coffee Maker
While you can use it to make cold coffee similar to that from a french press, the Sowden Soft Brew gives you more flexibility in that you can use different grind consistencies. The microfilter features over a million tiny holes that enable you to brew with even the finest grind, producing a richer cup or more concentrated coffee in a similar amount of time. This can also be used for make hot coffee, as well.

Chemex
It may look like a science experiment, but the science of the Chemex is easier than it looks. Unlike the french press and Sowden, you’re going to start your coffee out hot and as it brews it’ll cool down in the second chamber. All it takes is placing a good amount of ice in the bottom chamber, placing a paper filter in the top chamber, filling it up with your desired amount of coffee, pouring hot water over the coffee and watch as the coffee is extracted on to the ice giving you a smooth, cold and refreshing cup o’ java.

Hario Cold Brew/Mini Pot
Made specially for cold brewing, the Hario Cold Brew and Mini Pots come in a sleek glass pitcher that will guarantee you will extract the most flavor out of your coffee. No need to heat up your water, whether it be cold or room temperature, fill up your pot’s nylon filter basket with coarse grounds, pour the water and brew it in the fridge for about 12 to 24 hours. You won’t need to finish your brew all in one sitting as it can keep for up to one month in a sealed container.

Hario Cold Brew Dripper
If you’re fancy and have a lot of time on your hands, the the Hario Cold Water Dripper is what you need. A unique way of making your average cup of coffee or coffee concentrate, this dripper uses the classic cold-drip method. With every drop of water per second it saturates your coffee and drip by drip it will extract 26 oz. of coffee concentrate in about 5 hours. With a little more patience and learning curve, once you get the hang of it you’ll be sipping on some non-oily and acidic-free java.

Java on the Open Trail

The sun’s finally out, the weather’s getting warmer and it’s that time of year to trek up the mountain to enjoy good ol’ Mother Nature. But make sure you fill up that pack with all the essentials — map, water, compass and … CAFFEINE! Yes, it’s possible to keep yourself buzzing with java as you hike through the forest. Check out some of our favorite on-the-go coffee makers that we throw in our packs before we hit the open trail.

 


Bialetti Moka Express Stovetop Espresso Coffee Maker
As long as you have your whisper light, some water and your favorite coffee, you’ll be brewing up a strong cup o’ java in no time. Made of aluminum, this indestructible pot allows you to diffuse heat and get that same aromatic smell out of your coffee in the great outdoors. Simple and easy to use, just fill the lower chamber with water, add ground coffee to the filter and then  place it on your whisper light until the water boils your espresso to perfection.
AeroPress Light and easy to pack, the AeroPress is the next best thing to bringing the actual coffee maker on a hike. Made of BPA-free plastic, the AeroPress mixes grounds and water for ten second and then uses a micro-filter,  leaving your coffee silt and grit free. Smooth!
Handpresso Wild/Domepod Bike pump or espresso maker? The Handpresso may look like a bike pump but rather than pumping up your tire it’ll pump you up with caffeine. This hand held tool barely takes up any space and gives you an even easier option of using E.S.E. pods or your favorite ground coffee. All you need is hot water and your favorite coffee grounds or pods, then pump up the Handpresso and it’ll extract away.
Bodum Brazil French Press – 8 Cup – Polycarbonate Nearly indestructible, the polycarbonate version of Bodum’s popular French press is going to stick around for the long haul. Carry your favorite coarsely ground coffee, add hot water and let it hang out for a few minutes. Then serve up a rich brew for yourself and your favorite hiking partner — while watching the sunrise or set over the mountain side.

Health Watch: Coffee May Contribute to a Longer Life

And a happier one, too! If you need more scientific data to support your java love, read on.

Studies have shown that men and women who are drinking six or more cups of coffee a day have a 10 (for men) and 15 (for women) percent lower risk of dying at an earlier age.

Historically, doctors have noted a correlation between caffeine and an increase in bad cholesterol, high blood pressure and the risk of heart disease; however, a recent study has revealed an interesting pattern: Drinking coffee may extend the overall lifespan in already healthy individuals.

A study held from 1995 to 2008 involving the National Institutes of Health and AARP members between the ages of 50 to 71 from all over the US has given researchers a better look at the possible health benefits of coffee. They made sure to exclude people who already had heart disease, a stroke or cancer or had too many or too few calories a day.

‘By 2008 about 52,000 had died. Compared to those who drank no coffee, men who had two or three cups a day were 10 percent less likely to die at any age. For women, it was 13 percent,’ revealed the study.

Since previous studies have suggested that coffee may have a part in heart disease, this study inspired Neal Freedman, nutritional epidemiology researcher at the National Cancer Institute, to consider another contributing factor. He noted that many who were at higher risk of death were coffee drinkers and tobacco smokers, too. ‘It was only after we took into account people’s smoking that the association, the inverse association, revealed itself,’ he said. ‘Smoking has a really strong association with death.’

In the end, Freedman’s study showed that those with healthy habits who drink six or more cups of  caffeinated or decaffeinated coffee did cut the risk of dying but not to the extreme. Freedman couldn’t calculate the exact amount of extra life each cup can give you. However, he admits coffee drinkers were less likely to die from heart or respiratory disease, stroke, diabetes, injuries, accidents and infections. No effect was seen on cancer death risk, though.

So we’ll admit that we’ll grab that extra cup of java to increase the longevity of our lives, even if it’s only by a few percentage points, but a word of advice: More coffee does not mean you should pack on the sugar and cream.

As Dr. Frank Hu of the Harvard School of Public Health advises, ‘Watch the sugar and cream. Extra calories and fat could negate any benefits from coffee.’

All That (Caffeine) — and a Bag of Chips!

When you think of energy boosting drinks and food, thoughts of Red Bull, Rockstar and even your average shot of espresso come to mind, right?

But wait, did you ever think a bag of potato chips could give you the same amount of energy?

Arma Energy Snx and NRG have done the what many may consider to be the unthinkable: Created a crunchy + salty + caffeinated snack with a dash of taurine (an ingredient often found in energy drinks) to boost our mood.

Given that we often associate potato chips with being a couch potato, a high energy version definitely borders on ironic. But Arma claims that each 2-ounce bag comes with about 70 milligrams of caffeine while NRG says that every 3.5-ounce bag is ‘equivalent to 3 and a half cups of coffee, 350 mg of caffeine.’

However, with each bag also comes 290 calories. Compare that to an energy drink that has 80 mg of caffeine and 110 calories and a shot of espresso with only 5 calories and 75 mg of caffeine.