Cold Brew

When photographers discuss tools of the trade, the conversation usually focuses on lenses and cameras. But there’s another important accessory in my bag of tricks: coffee. It’s a luxury that I can always afford.

Like most independents, the artist’s journey is a route than traverses both hills and valleys. Good months are celebrated with a few extra indulgences. Leaner times require more discipline.

There is, however, one constant during the entire ride. A bag of ground French Roast costs $7. That’s a week’s worth of enjoyment that’s absolutely independent of good times or bad.

Mornings begin with a hot, aromatic cup slightly sweetened from the drip machine. A few hours later, I prepare a pour over with a single-cup filter. Then, when I want an afternoon pick-me-up, I reach for a jar of cold brew that I have squirreled away in the fridge.


Most coffee drinkers are familiar with electric pots and paper filters. But I’ve noticed that many have not experienced the joys of cold brew. It’s a smooth and mellow delight that provides plenty of kick.

I make mine in an everyday Bodum French Press that’s essentially a glass beaker with a fine-mesh screen and a plunger. In the late afternoon, I put 5 scoops of medium ground French Roast in the bottom, slowly add cold water to soak all of the grounds, then let the mixture mingle in the fridge for 15 hours.

The next morning, I “press” the grounds to the bottom of the container, then pour the filtered coffee into jars for consumption as needed in the waning hours of the day.

If you like coffee, but haven’t experienced homemade cold brew, I highly recommend it.

Artists are fueled by many things, and for me at least, this is one of the most important.