Thursday, March 23

Why does iced coffee taste different than hot coffee that’s cooled?

With temperatures rising as summer heat waves kick in, a cup of iced coffee or cold brew you have likely graced your hands in recent weeks. There’s nothing quite like that first sip touching your tongue ahead of a long weekday in the summer.

But hot coffee that has cooled naturally doesn’t have the same smooth taste — even if it’s brought to the same temperature. Seems weird, right? Why wouldn’t coffee taste the same at the same temperature, even if it got there another way?

We asked coffee experts to explain, but before we get into the why, we’ll lay out the types of coffee we’re discussing here:

  • Iced coffee: Coffee brewed hot that has been cooled rapidly or has ice added immediately.
  • cold brew coffee: Coffee grounds are steeped in water between 12-24 hours and then strained over a coffee filter to make cold brew concentrate that’s diluted with water or milk and served over ice.
  • Naturally cooled hot coffee: Coffee brewed hot that’s been gradually cooled to room temperature without using ice.

Coffee time:Here’s how to make cold brew coffee (and what makes it different from iced coffee)

Back to the coffee conundrum, as posed on TikTok: “Why does intentional cold coffee delicious but warm coffee that has gone cold (is disgusting)?” @bottomlysmimosas posed.

Dan McLaughlin, “@softpourn”, answered her question directly in a stitch.

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