Cold brew has reached the mainstream with adoption by huge chains over the years. Now, nitro coffee is riding cold brew’s coattails waiting for mainstream acceptance. Both are coffees brewed cold and served cold – perfect for a summer day. The only difference is that nitro coffee is loaded with nitrogen to provide a slightly carbonated feel.
Nitro coffee is great, but the challenges of execution are difficult. Like a good beer, the product is at its finest when poured from a tap. Check around: there aren’t too many coffee taps around. Rather than a daily drink, nitro coffee becomes a special occasion beverage for when you are at the right place at the right time. Access is a problem.
Stumptown Coffee aims to offer a solution with their Stumptown Nitro Cold Brew Coffee. This drink is available in cans (I’ve only seen it in Target). The 10.3 oz can looks to be missing about 1.7 oz of drink under the lid. I imagine leaving extra space for the coffee to incorporate with the nitrogen helps the taste. Can instructions dictate that the drinker tilts the can twice before opening in order to froth up the nitrogen. Drink straight from the can or tip it over and pour it out. The taste stays consistent.
Speaking of taste, Stumptown Nitro Cold Brew does well to produce what nitro coffee aims for: a cool, creamy brew that develops the natural sweetness of the beans. The most incredible aspect of Stumptown’s Nitro is the convenience. The ability to reach into a cooler or fridge and pop the top on some nitro is wonderful.
There are some drawbacks, though. First, the taste is good, but the carbonation I expect from nitro is lacking a bit here. Perhaps my can tilting was slightly off before I opened. The head left a little something to be desired. Second, the price. $5! Holy smokes! $5 for a canned coffee is a pretty outrageous. Plus, there is a Starbucks right in my Target. If I wanted to spend too much to be underwhelmed by a cup of coffee, I could just head there.
I think there are two kinds of people that are going to be into Stumptown’s Nitro. One is a curious coffee drinker that wants to check out nitro as a novelty. The other is the person that wants to add some sporadic style to their coffee routine. At $5 each, no one is walking out with a 24 pack of nitros.
Consume.Review.Repeat. gives Stumptown Nitro Cold Brew Coffee 7.6 can-tilts out of 10.