In 1986 (pre-Starbucks), coffee was almost entirely considered a hot beverage. The general public’s idea of an iced coffee was old hot brewed coffee poured over ice. Through the 90’s, it was very hard to convince customers that iced coffee beverages could be desirable! Promoting the idea of cold brewing to produce these delectable chilled coffee beverages was very foreign to the consumer.
New Orleans helped educate the world about cold brewed coffee beverages. For decades, many companies such as Café Du Monde and French Market marketed Café Au Lait as a hot beverage. Both produced a coffee blend of Coffee and Chicory (around 50% of each). Travelers from around the world always looked forward to their visits to New Orleans to indulge in a Café Au Lait treat and a magical Beignet. In the early 90’s, many of the New Orleans’s coffee shops started cold brewing coffee and chicory to produce iced coffees. Many visitors discovered that a cold brewed iced coffee can be even more alluring and satisfying than their hot coffee beverage.
Through the years, my wife and I have always enjoyed drinking cold brewed coffee beverages made with coffee and chicory. We have found that a 70% Coffee and 30% Chicory blend delivers the perfect cold brew. Chicory adds complexity and a full-bodied cup of Joe. When a blend goes beyond 30% the chicory overwhelms the attributes of the coffee.