Five refreshingly boozy cold-brew cocktails
Across the city, Toronto baristas are pouring thirst-quenching cold brew, the hyper-trendy coffee drink that’s steeped for up to 24 hours (which makes it less acidic than regular iced coffee). Better yet, now bartenders are combining it with booze—and it’s our new favourite way to battle the upwardly creeping humidex. Here are five of the best caffeinated cocktails, and where to find them.
This Vietnamese Coffee isn’t your usual phở chaser. La Muse Verte absinthe is mixed with condensed milk and then served alongside a glass of Osborne Cream Sherry and Amaro Nonino–infused cold brew from Café Muerté. Order on its own, or have it after dinner with fresh-from-the-oven chocolate chip cookies. $12.
1564 Queen St. W., 647-352-8815, geraldinetoronto.com
To make his cold brew, Alex Nassar steeps coarsely ground beans from Hamilton-based Johnny’s Coffee for 24 hours. There’s only one cocktail on his menu that features it: the Kimmy Darling, for which he combines two ounces of Jim Beam, three ounces of cold brew and a splash of crème de cassis. It tastes like black forest cake. $9.
388 College St., 647-748-1011, voodoochild.ca
Drake One Fifty
The hyper-refreshing WayBold cocktail (created for the WayHome festival) combines draught cold brew with Jim Beam, lemon juice and tonic syrup. So what’s draught cold brew? Here, it’s Reunion Island coffee that’s brewed and stored in pressurized kegs with nitro. Once tapped, pumped and poured, the nitro gives the coffee an almost Guinness-like texture. $14.
150 York St., 416-363-6150, drakeonefifty.ca
Northwood was the first bar in the city to experiment with cold-brew cocktails. At its new Trinity Bellwoods–adjacent sister spot, we’re particularly keen on the Cold Brewlep because it’s the perfect slow-sipping patio pick-me-up (and we love a good pun). Jim Beam black, concentrated chicory-spiked cold brew, simple syrup and muddled mint leaves are poured over crushed ice. $13.
913 Dundas St. W., 416-823-8969, northernbelle.ca
The Harbord Room
Bar manager Evelyn Chick was inspired by the Australian trend of washing down espresso with tonic. For the 49th Sunset, she steeps coarsely ground Rufino beans for eight hours in room temperature water, and makes an ancho-chili-and-coffee syrup using the resulting cold brew. The finished cocktail combines Mount Gay Eclipse with Amaro Averna, the pleasantly throat-tingling coffee syrup, cold brew, tonic and a couple dashes of orange bitters. $10.
89 Harbord St., 416-962-8989, theharbordroom.com