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Iced Coffee vs Cold Brew⎮ What You Should Know

            Iced Coffee vs Cold Brew⎮ What You Should Know

Cold coffee recipes are among the most requested coffee drinks with Iced coffee experiencing greater consumption compared to cold brew.  What is the difference between the two and why is one more popular than the other?  Read on to learn more about these two popular coffee styles. 

Graphic Showing Popularity of Various Coffees

What is Cold Brew? 

The first thing we need to clarify is the cold brew is a brewing method and not a serving method although both terms are often used synonymously.   For example, cold brewed coffee can can be used to make a variety drinks just like a coffee made with a French Press or an espresso machine can be used in a variety of applications.  This means that you could use a coffee made from a cold brew method in a hot coffee application.

So let's understand how the cold brew method works. All brewing methods require that water passes through coffee. Cold brew occurs when cold or ambient water is slow-dripped or slow-steeped through coffee beans or ground coffee.  Since heat usually is key in the extraction process,  extended amount of time needed when using cold water. Usually it takes 12-18 hours to achieve a flavourful coffee.  

This combination of lower temperature and longer contact time produce a unique sensory and quality profile but it comes with risks.

Cold Brew⎮What You Should Know

The main concern that health inspectors have regarding cold brew is the potential growth of bacteria. Given the fact that cold water is used for the cold brew process and it is left to brew for hours the potential for bacteria to develop is real.

According to the National Coffee Association, "The primary source of danger in mishandled cold brew is theoretically the bacteria Clostridium botulinum (C. bot.) which causes botulism to grow and produce toxin."

What is Iced Coffee?

Iced coffee on the other hand is a coffee that has been brewed using a brewing system that uses hot water for the extraction process, for example,  Drip, French Press, Aeropress, Espresso are all examples of brewing methods that use hot water for extraction.

What equipment do you need to make iced coffee drinks? 

When preparing a coffee using hot water as discussed and the coffee is cooled by either placing it in a refrigerator or freezer or by adding ice, then the result will be an iced coffee.

The iced coffee in turn can be used to make specialty drinks like a cappuccino or latte.

However, have you ever poured a hot drink into a glass of ice, just to watch the ice blink out of existence? Enjoying a drink with ice is not the same as enjoying an iced drink. While you may first attempt to pour your hot espresso shot directly into a glass of ice, the resulting lukewarm drink - sans ice - is hardly worthy of being called an iced coffee. Unfortunately, many high end cafés serve this very bad example of an iced coffee. Here are a few options to enjoying your cold iced espresso the right away. 

The newly released Philips EP3241/74



Recognizing the popularity of iced coffee and the desire for cold specialty drinks using iced coffee, Philips released a new superautomatic machine in 2022 to meet this need.

The Philips EP3241/74 is a fully superautomatic coffee machine that produces coffee with the push of a button.  The unique feature that this newly released machine has it that also provided an Iced Coffee option at the push of a button.


 This coffee machine produces 5 delicious coffees at your fingertips, included iced coffee.  Here is how the iced coffee is made:

  • Adapted lower brew temperature (59℃)
  • Slower Flowrate (2.5ml/sec -3.5 ml/sec).  Brewing at a slower flowrate allows for  fuller coffee extraction bringing out the intensity and nuances of the coffee flavours.
  • 3 aroma settings (best in cup result with aroma strength 3)
  • 3 quantity levels (ml): 90 (Min) –120 (Med) –150 (Max)

In addition, this machine still provides all the high quality exceptional features of the Philips 3200 series.  The Philips 3200 series has been around for over 3 years and has received rave reviewsfrom all those who have purchased.  The EP3241/54 was awarded the Best Value Espresso Machine for 2022.

Standard Features of the 3200 Series

  • silky smooth milk froth thanks to the high speed LatteGo system
  • Up to 5000 cups without descaling with regular use of the AquaClean filter system
  • Ability to adjust aroma strength and quantity via the My Coffee Choice options
  • Easily adjusts coffee to your taste with the 12-step grinder levels
  • The perfect temperature, aroma and crema cup after cups
  • 20,000 cups of coffee with durable ceramic grinder

Final Thoughts About Cold Brew and Iced Coffee Drinks 

Cold coffee drinks are absolutely wonderful. They are refreshing and allow for a full range of recipes to be enjoyed.  Your first instinct may be to use cold brew as the base to make these recipes but think again. 

  • Cold Brew may pose some risks if you are not 100% certain of the safety practices used by the producers.
  • Iced Coffee Drinks only require a refrigerator and ice but don't water down the drink compromising flavour.  See our tips and tricks to make a proper iced coffee drink.
  • Consider a superautomatic machine like the Philips EP3241/74 that provides an Iced Coffee option with the push of a button. This will save you time by allowing you to make a drink with the push of a button.  

If you have any questions about superautomatic coffee machines, please reach out  to us. We are happy to help you.

Comments (1 Response)

03 October, 2022


Well written post.Keep up the good work. It is filled with precise information.

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