Cold Drip Coffee Maker 4 of the Best
If you love iced coffee and you haven’t yet discovered a brew made using a cold drip coffee maker you don’t know what you’ve been missing and your taste buds have been missing out to. Making cold drip coffee takes time and the end brew is a dynamic, strong tasting coffee that you won’t find coming out of any other brewing device such as an espresso machine or even your best French Press you have sitting at the back of your cupboard.
If you are a cold drip brew virgin and think you might want to take the plunge and give this a brewing method a try, keep on reading and I’ll go into more detail about what cold drip brew coffee is and some of the best cold drip coffee makers currently available to get you going on your journey.
Okay Sounds Great, But What is Cold Drip Coffee?
If you’re reading this article you probably already have a general idea what cold drip coffee is, but if you’re still not sure here is a brief explanation of how using a cold drip coffee maker along with a bit of advance brewing can leave you refreshed on a hot summer afternoon.
As I have briefly mentioned cold drip coffee takes time (typically over 10 hours for the best brews) and involves slowly dripping cold water through coffee at roughly 1-drip per second (depending on the cold drip coffee maker used) to achieve a strong syrupy concentrate that you can store for up to two weeks and serve over ice when required.
Extracting the coffee using the cold drip method also helps to eliminate a lot of the bitter oils and impurities found in the coffee beans, so if you have a delicate stomach you may find that cold drip coffee is a better option for getting your caffeine hit.
Cold Drip Coffee Maker Recommendations
Below I have listed four of my favorite cold drip coffee makers, some are great for the budget minded just venturing into the world of home cold brew coffee while others are not so practical for the home use and resemble something from the Breaking Bad television series, but do make a delicious cold brew. Let’s take a closer look.
Iwaki Water Drip 4 Cup Cold Brew
The Iwaki is becoming one of my favorite cold drip coffee makers and one that I only recently had delivered to the house. So I haven’t had too much time to experiment with it but what I’ve had so far has been great. This is about as simple as it gets when making cold drip coffee at home and as I like to say there is “no rocket science needed” to operate this brewer.
For anyone just getting into making cold drip coffee at home this is a great place to start, costing just under $30 (at the time of writing) the Iwaki Water Drip 4 Cup Cold Brew takes the guess work out of the whole process. Simply place your freshly grounded coffee into the middle chamber, place that into the glass carafe, and fill the top chamber with cold iced water. The whole process usually takes around 8 hours, so I like to leave it dripping overnight.
One downside with the Iwaki Cold Drip Coffee Maker is that there is no way to control the drip speed and the speed of the drip really depends on how coarse or fine your coffee is. The more expensive cold drip coffee makers tend to have variable drip speeds. Make sure to check out my full Iwaki review here.
Bruer Cold Brew Drip Coffee Maker
Another great option is the Bruer cold brew drip coffee maker, this works in a very similar way to the above Iwaki however you do have a very simple way to adjust the drip rate with the Bruer. It’s not the most accurate and you will find that you will have to keep going back to make slight adjustments to the drip rate but at least you do have a way to regulate the drip by twisting the center rod.
However, once you have mastered the Bruer cold brew drip coffee maker it really does make a great tasting cold brew coffee. The downside of the Bruer is that is does come at a price (nearly 3x the price of the above Iwaki) and for many of you reading this the increased cost when compared to the above Iwaki might not be worth the investment for something that operates in basically the same way albeit with the option the regulate the drip rate.
Hario Cold Drip Coffee Maker
If you want to jump in the deep end of home cold drip coffee brewing and don’t mind throwing down the cash on one of the best cold drip coffee makers the Hario Coffee Water Dripper might just be what you’re looking for. But be warned this isn’t for the cold brewing newbies, you’ll need to slowly work your way up to this once you’ve mastered the lower cold drip brewing leagues!
The best slow drip cold brew coffee maker does come at a price and with the Hario cold drip don’t expect much change from $300. Like I said this isn’t really for those of you that are just venturing into the world of cold drip brew coffee, if that sounds like you then I highly recommend the Iwaki to get your feet wet first.
The Hario cold drip gives you a bit more control over your cold brew and you can adjust things like the drip rate and the strength of your final cold brew. Getting the drip rate perfect can take a bit of fiddling, Hario recommend a drip rate of one drop every 1.5 seconds. To get this rate you need to play with your coffee grind and with the drip valve, I have also fund that if you slightly moisten the coffee grounds (just a splash of water will do) prior to use you won’t have any issues with water backing up and overflowing (you can thank me later).
Yama Cold Drip Coffee Maker
The Yama cold drip coffee maker is very similar to the above Hario and to be honest only a couple of changes in the design and appearance can differentiate between them. The Yama Cold Drip Coffee Maker has a more intricate design with its coffee dripping tubes and utilizes a ceramic filter.
Just like the above Hario you can control the drip rate via an adjustable valve along with your coffee coarseness which will also play a role. For example, if your coffee is too fine of a grind it brews far too slowly and this will leave you with an over extracted bitter coffee concentrate, on the other hand if your coffee is too coarsely ground it will brew too fast and you will get a sourer under extracted coffee concentrate. It really is a trial an error on all of the cold drip coffee brewers until you find what works for you.
If you are looking to join the big league in cold drip coffee brewing the Yama Cold Drip Coffee Maker will turn you into a mad coffee scientist and you’ll be the envy of all your coffee drinking buddies. But once the buzz wears off you’ll soon realize that you can get just as good cold drip coffee from one of the cheaper brewers listed above at the fraction of the price.
Final Ramblings: Why I Love Slow Drip Coffee Brews
If you already own an AeroPress you can make a crude homemade cold drip coffee maker check out my article on how to do that here. Cold drip coffee brewing shouldn’t be confused with cold brew, both of these methods are different, one involves dripping water over coffee and the other involves immersing coffee in water such as the Toddy method.
I can say that over the years I have tried all of the above slow drip cold brew coffee makers but so far whilst sat writing this my favorite is still the Iwaki due to its cost and ease of use. Like I said you really don’t have to be a “rocket scientist” or a star in the Breaking Bad television show to be able to use it to brew a great tasting iced coffee concentrate.