Cold-brewing vs. Traditional way
I am doing some experimenting with all things tea, and was wondering what your opinion is on this topic. I have heard some people state that when they prepare iced tea, they usually do it by cold brewing so that it produces a ‘rounder’ flavour. By rounder I imagine they mean more full, not as sharp or strong? Anyways, have you found that this technique produces a better iced tea or does it not matter? I currently do the double strength thing and pour over ice.
So far I’m finding that it’s just a case of different teas, different qualities. Some I like hot brewed and can’t stand cold brewed and some vice versa, and some I like both ways though the flavors are quite different.
So, personally, I can’t say a specific for-all answer. Depends on the tea for me.
I have just started experimenting with cold brewing. What I found so far is that you need to use more teabags for a stronger flavor. My boyfriend made some cold brewed tea before and it tasted a little flat to me. I’m not sure if that was the tea or how it was brewed.
My family usually does the double strength and pour over ice too.
I tend to do it cold-brew mostly just because it’s easier. I’ve tried both ways, but I can’t really say I’ve detected a huge difference in flavour.
When you cold-brew tea, it releases a lot less caffeine into the brewed tea. If you brew it hot, it will have the normal amount of caffeine. Cold-brewing also takes anywhere from 3-10 hours for the flavor to really come through. I prefer hot-brewed simply because it’s faster and caffeine isn’t a concern for me. I agree with Angrboda that I don’t really notice a big difference in flavor, except that sometimes cold-brewing makes the tea less bitter tasting.
I only cold brew because I don’t have ice. Sometimes i do really long brews, up to 48 hours with honeybush.
I either make iced tea by cold brewing overnight (using the same amount of leaf that I would for hot tea) or by boiling hot water and letting it cool in large quantities (usually a gallon at a time).
I have to stretch my tea leaves due to being a poor college student, so I can’t add double the leaf and add ice or I would not be able to afford my habit!
Flavor-wise I only notice that cold brewing is often smoother and less astringent – it’s virtually impossible to oversteep teas when cold brewing because of this (that has been my experience, at least). So if you have a notoriously finicky tea it might be worth a shot to try cold brewing to avoid an oversteeped cup…