Cup of Nitro Coffee on countertop

Nitro Coffee: What It Is And How It’s Made


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What is all the hype about Nitro coffee? Why would someone want to put gas in their drinks? Not talking about fuel for your vehicle; this is adding gas to the fuel for your body in a solid, liquid, gas type scenario. Nitrogen gas that is. So, again, why would someone want to put gas into a drink? If you think about it, gas has actually been added to drinks for eons, such as in soda, beer, and sparkling water.

What is Nitrogen?

Nitrogen is a chemical element with the symbol N and is number seven on the periodic table. It is a colorless, odorless, nonreactive gas that makes up 78% of the Earth’s atmosphere. When you add Nitrogen to drinks, it creates a texture that has been described as ‘foamy’ or ‘thick’ due to all of the tiny bubbles it produces. It is one of the main ingredients in creating beer and Nitro coffee.

How is it Used in Coffee?

So, what is Nitro coffee? This is cold brew coffee infused with Nitrogen. Nitrogen gas doesn’t dissolve in liquids as well as CO2 (what you would find in sodas) and has smaller bubbles that makes the cold brew smooth and low in acidity. If you order it at a coffee shop, it would be dispensed from a draft system like the ones used to serve beer. This is because the Nitrogen needs to be infused with the coffee when it is served to create the creamy texture. If you were to be served a glass of Nitro coffee without knowing what it was, you might think it looks like a pint of Guinness.

Where Can You Find Nitro Coffee?

Many coffee shops have started selling Nitro coffee. Other places that Nitro coffee has become popular are juice and smoothie bars at fitness centers. This is because Nitro coffee has been deemed as a ‘healthier’ option for those who enjoy their coffee sweetened, but don’t want the extra calories that are in many sweeteners. This is because the addition of Nitrogen to cold brew creates a naturally sweet flavor. Nitro is also lower in acid and has a higher amount of caffeine content due to the brewing process. This is because certain acids don’t get extracted from the bean until it is exposed to higher temperatures. Cold brew coffee is never exposed to higher temperatures, thus the acids are never released.

Additional Options

Nitro coffee is usually only available on tap where it is served because of the need to add Nitrogen. There are ways to make it at home by purchasing a dispenser, but these are fairly pricey. There are a few brewing companies that offer canned versions of Nitro coffee. This was because a scientist at La Colombe found a way to use Nitrous Oxide to create Nitro coffee that wouldn’t lose their bubbles after being contained.

Infusing gas with beverages has been done for years, so it was only a matter of time someone decided to try it with coffee. The result was a smooth, naturally sweetened caffeinated unification. If you’re a fan of cold brew and craft beer, Nitro might become your new favorite drink. Interested in trying different types of unique coffee yourself? Visit Mochas & Javas, a Texas coffee shop with locations in San Marcos and Frisco, TX.

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