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Here's Everything You Need To Know About Nitro Coffee

Brace yourselves, coffee fans. There's a new brew in town.

Photo by Laura Metzler / Design by Jenny Chang / BuzzFeed

Ahh, iced coffee: The unofficial sign that summer is in full swing.

Laura Metzler / for BuzzFeed

This summer, a certain kind of iced coffee has been popping up just about everywhere.

And it's infused with ~nitrogen~.


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The nitrogen affects two main things in the coffee: taste and texture.

It's also creamier, even when served black:

Laura Metzler / for BuzzFeed

Which means it's not uncommon for some coffee drinkers — who usually swear by adding milk and sugar — to drink this stuff straight.

At coffee shops, the icy brew is usually stored in a keg, pressurized, and poured from a tap:

Laura Metzler / for BuzzFeed

The result is a foam finish, and those little champagne-like bubbles rising to the top.

Also worth noting? This stuff is strong.

Laura Metzler / for BuzzFeed

Or at the very least, the caffeine rush can hit you faster. With some brews, that's because of an amped up coffee-to-water ratio, said Josh Brodey, coffee manager at Slipstream in Washington, DC. (Another theory? That the nitrogen might lead to faster absorption rates.)

Packaged versions are also popping up in some markets.

Stumptown Roasters /
Cuvee Coffee /
District Roasters /

In Austin and Houston, you can find ones from Cuvee Coffee and District Roasters. Stumptown is testing a canned version in Oregon and California, in addition to serving it on tap at its locations in Portland, Seattle, Los Angeles, and NYC. “Shipments are selling out every week,” said Aylsworth. “This year feels like the tipping point."

But for coffee aficionados who can't find the stuff locally — or for those not buying the hype — Brodey suggests a similar DIY alternative, sans the fancy nitrogen.

You won't get the slightly bubbly feel, but you'll get a crisp, concentrated cup — in less time than other iced coffee methods.


Laura Metzler / for BuzzFeed

All original photos by Laura Metzler; shot on location at Slipstream.

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