According to news reporting originating from Alexandria, Virginia, by VerticalNews journalists, a patent by the inventor Simpson, Strother ( Round Top, TX), filed on July 30, 2015, was published online on March 27, 2018.
The assignee for this patent, patent number 9924827, is Toddy LLC ( Fort Collins, CO).
Reporters obtained the following quote from the background information supplied by the inventors: “Cold coffee brewing is a growing segment of the coffee industry. Cold brewing provides a rich liquid coffee extract that, when diluted with water or dairy, can be smoother and less bitter than traditional high temperature extraction methods because the latter can leach bitter components into the coffee, and the resulting liquid coffee is of a significantly higher pH.
“In addition, prior commercial cold brewing systems have a number of problems that would be desirable to improve upon. For example, existing cold brewing devices channel coffee grinds north and south and drain through a felt-type filter. In these systems the filters tend to blind (clog) during draining. Some devices use a filter bag that is prone to breakage/spillage of coffee grounds as well as prone to produce air pockets in the coffee grounds that leads to weak and inconsistent extract. Furthermore, some systems use a one filter stage tend to clog, allow fine sediment to blend into the final extract, and do not completely saturate coffee thus producing an inconsistent coffee with lots of sediment.”
In addition to obtaining background information on this patent, VerticalNews editors also obtained the inventor’s summary information for this patent: “This invention provides one or more solutions to the omissions and/or deficiencies described above.
“In one broad respect, this invention is a coffee brewing device, comprising: a container made of food-grade material that is capable of holding a quantity of water, wherein the container has a height that is greater than a width of the container. The device includes a first horizontal plate positioned above the base of the container. The first horizontal plate has a shape substantially coextensive with the shape of the container at the height at which the first horizontal plate is positioned. The plate includes a plurality of first holes of a size and number effective to permit adequate flow of water through the plate during operation of the device. The device includes a rigid component which supports the plate above the bottom of the container. For example, the container can include at least one protrusion (or ledge) on the interior of the container configured to hold and position the first horizontal plate in place during use. This ledge/protrusion may be referred to as a recess. A filter is laid upon the plate so that it abuts the first horizontal plate. Alternatively, the device can include a table with legs which supports the plate and has an opening to permit flow of fluid vertically through the holes in the plate. Likewise, the device can include a tube configured to support the plate above the bottom of the container. The filter may be a simple paper filter. Alternatively, the filter can be a synthetic polymeric material. Also, the filter can be in the form of a pouch or envelope which is configured to hold the first horizontal plate, with the filter thus being held in place by the plate and recess. The paper filter is shaped to be substantially coextensive with the first horizontal plate. The paper filter has a plurality of holes that have a smaller average diameter as compared to the average diameter of the plurality of holes of the first horizontal plate. The device includes an outlet spigot positioned on the exterior of the container below the position of the first horizontal plate and a position above the base of the container configured such that the outlet spigot intersects the side of the container at a point above where sediments accumulate on the bottom of the container during use of the device. The spigot can optinally include a mesh filter. The device can optionally include a second horizontal plate and a second ledge to position the second horizontal plate above the first horizontal filter
“It should be noted that the first horizontal plate and the base of the container form a space, which may be described as a coalescing chamber, which functions to decant liquid away from the sediment that accumulates during brewing and draining (or dispensing) of the liquid from the device.
The device can be used to brew coffee, tea, or other select botanical beverages. The device can be used for either cold or hot brewing of coffee or other beverages; however, the device is particularly adapted to cold brewing coffee.
“The device can include one or more of the following elements: a container that has a cylindrical shape, with the base the shape of a circle; a lid; components made of a metal such as stainless steel, a food grade polymer, and combinations thereof; holes of the filter have a size in the range of from about 5 to about 150 microns, in certain embodiments a size in the range from about 10 to about 100 microns; a volume for the container of from about one quart to about 500 gallons, but it should be noted that this device may be even larger, and in one embodiment has a volume less than 20 gallons and in yet another embodiment has a volume 20 gallons or greater; the plate, screen, or the like has holes in the range from 1/100 inch to 1/2 inch; one or more additional horizontal plates and a corresponding ledges that are configured to hold additional paper filters; a spigot that includes a mesh filter; a spigot that can have a diameter of for example between 1/4 inch and 1 inch. The container is sized to have a volume that holds both a given amount of water plus coffee grounds.
“In a second broad respect, this invention is a method of brewing coffee, comprising: assembling the device of this invention; placing coffee grounds on the filter; adding water to the container to submerge the coffee grounds; allowing the water to contact the coffee grounds for a period of time; and then opening the spigot to drain the brewed coffee. The water should ideally be added gently to limit the amount of agitation/movement of the coffee grounds positioned on the paper filter. It has been found that the less the coffee ground bed is disturbed during the process, the less fine particulates will move into the coalescing chamber, thus providing a clear liquid with a limited amount of suspended particulates. The device can optionally include a paddle employed by an end user to gently tap the coffee and water mixture to wet any floating coffee particles thus allowing the now-wet particles to fall into the coffee ground bed.
“The resulting coffee extract is thus clear and highly finished/polished. Advantageously, the device produces a pure, polished, concentrated coffee extract that has less sediment and is more polished compared to that produced by current commercial devices. The device is convenient for the user. The device allows for total saturation of coffee grinds creating slurry that aides in the brewing and filtration process. In this regard, coffee and water completely saturate, with no dry pockets, producing a consistent finished product. It should be noted that certain current commercial devices, unlike this invention, create dry pockets. That is, in certain current commercial devices 100% of the coffee grinds are not saturated with water thus creating inconsistent batches of finished product.
“Advantageously, the device lacks a filter bag that holds the coffee grounds. It should be appreciated that current commercial devices that include a filter bag can be prone to breakage/spillage of coffee grounds. Advantageously, the device channels the coffee so that it gravitates from north to south (up/down) which permits the coffee grounds to act as a filter bed which polishes the finished product. Conversely, certain current commercial devices include a suspended filter bag that forces coffee to drain east, west, north, and south, creating a swirling action that maximizes sediment in the finished product.
“Advantageously, the device of this invention includes multiple filter stages that allow for exceptional sediment removal. In particular, the coffee ground bed serves as a first filter bed, the paper filter serves as a second filter, and the coalescing chamber serves as a third filter chamber that permits sediment dropping out of solution, collecting on the base of the container below the spigot. The coalescing chamber, i.e., the third stage, thus serves as a filter trap configured to remove many of the superfine particulates.
“In addition, certain current commercial devices channel coffee grinds north and south and drain through a felt-type filter. Disadvantageously, the felt-type filter tends to blind (clog) during draining. The present invention excludes a felt-like filter, thus permitting improved draining and ideally provides no clogging.
“Furthermore, the present invention is capable of producing a cold brewed concentrated liquid coffee having a Brix value of 3-9. Brix is significantly higher than certain current commercial devices. It should be appreciated that Brix value quantifies the density value or amount of soluble solids in the brewed liquid.
“In one embodiment, the water has an initial temperature of from 32 to 212 degrees Fahrenheit, more typically from 32 to 150 degrees Fahrenheit. Typically, the initial water temperature is approximately room temperature, such as from 50 to about 90 degrees Fahrenheit. In one embodiment, the ratio of water by volume in quarts to coffee grounds by weight in pounds is in the range from 0.5 to 5. For example, seven gallons of water (28 quarts) in combination with 8 pounds of ground coffee has a ratio of 7:2. In one embodiment, the period of time from adding water and coffee to the device to draining at least a portion of brewed coffee from the device is from one to 24 hours.
“In another broad respect, this invention is a method of manufacturing a coffee brewing device, comprising: providing a container made of food-grade material that is capable of holding a quantity of water, wherein the container has a height that is greater than a width of the container; providing a first horizontal plate positioned above the base of the container, the first horizontal plate having a shape substantially coextensive with the internal shape of the container at the height at which the first horizontal plate is positioned, and having a plurality of first holes; providing a component to suspend the plate above the bottom of the container such as at least one protrusion (or ledge) on the interior of the container, a tube, a table, or otherwise, configured to hold and position the first horizontal plate in place during use; providing a paper filter that abuts (lies on) the first horizontal plate and which shaped to be substantially coextensive with the first horizontal plate, wherein the paper filter has a plurality of holes that have a smaller average diameter as compared to the average diameter of the plurality of holes of the first horizontal plate; and providing an outlet spigot positioned on the exterior of the container below the position of the first horizontal plate and a position above the base of the container configured such that the outlet spigot intersects the side of the container at a point above point where sediments accumulate during use of the device.”
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