A new, deeply flawed study finds that 66% of people prefer cold brew over iced coffee.
According to an article in Italian coffee trade website Comunicaffe, the study was performed by a company called Square Cottage, makers of a “French Press Design [sic] Cold Brew Coffee Maker.” For the weeklong survey, participants were asked to “alternate between cold brew, iced coffee, and hot coffee,” and “after each beverage, participants recorded how they felt based on several questions.” They found that 2:1 participants preferred cold brew to iced coffee.
There are some caveats here, though. Each participant was given one of Square Cottage’s “best French Press Cold Brew Coffee [Makers]” to use at home, meaning folks were responsible for making their own drinks, so there goes any sense of objectivity. It should also be noted that this is pretty much just a French press; sure it can make iced coffee, but there’s no guarantee it’s any good. I’d wager most folk’s idea of iced coffee is more of a filter/pour-over brew than a heavier, French pressed cup. It may just be the case that this particular brewer is better at making cold brew than it is iced coffee.
The point is: these results are wrong. While I’m not anti-cold brew (actually I’m anti-people-that-are-anti-cold brew), let’s be totally honest with each other here: if you’re offering tasters a crappy French press version of iced coffee, as opposed to, you know, something a bit more dialed in and flavor-focused, of course that is going to skewer the results. If you’d like to make some delicious iced coffee at home, we like Counter Culture’s method presented here by Lifehacker. If you’d prefer to drink some cold brew, that’s of course fine as well.
However, if your real preference is in producing poorly constructed, fundamentally flawed studies, then passing them off as legit coffee statistical points of reference to help sell brewing baubles and doodads, we are going to have some beef.