Leura cafe owner Joe Campbell reckons he’s finally cracked the code on the latest coffee craze.
Looking more like a high-school science experiment than a coffee machine, the eight hour cold-drip brew has been a popular feature at Red Door Cafe with more than 20 blends going through the contraption before he recently settled on an Ethiopian blend called Yirgacheffe coffee.
Mr Campbell was slightly bemused to see the delicate cold-drip brew mentioned in metropolitan media last week as the latest thing after working on the best blend for two-and-a-half years.
“I’ve done 20 odd coffees and we’ve tried blends but this is a well rounded coffee ... it’s the right extraction for it.”
To his knowledge no one else is using this large cold-drip coffee brew technique in the Mountains.
“I like it because it is slow,” he said.
Mr Campbell, who was a chef for 12 years at the award-winning Vulcans restaurant in Blackheath and has been running his cafe for three years, says he “came to coffee late in life” but is now a committed aficionado.
He’s not expecting the cold-drip brew to take over sales of espresso anytime soon. He sells a modest 16 cups weekly from the two brews he makes and at $4.50 a cup it’s usually sold to Sydneysiders “because they know it already” — hardly a money spinner for such a labour intensive process.
Mr Campbell said it was his way of experimenting with versions of the popular beverage and moving away from a heavy ice cream laden iced coffee.
The coffee is made by pouring iced water into the top chamber. The water drips onto lightly roasted coffee grounds and then the coffee filters to the bottom where a refreshing brew with lemon notes and pomegranate emerges. It usually takes eight hours but he has left it on overnight too.
“The idea of iced coffee ... I didn’t really like it, but this was different, it’s refreshing and I do a spice sugar syrup for those who like sugar in their coffee to go with it,” he said.