Cold Brewed Writing Fuel

by ryankl

I finally succumbed to the jittery devil of caffeine. So if I’m doing it, I’m doing it in style.

I’d managed to teach a decade without really ever having coffee. But I guess being an Assistant Principal, father of two, husband to one, tweeter of lots, and writer of things all at the same time finally stormed my defences and made me realise what true tiredness felt like. I was brought low, and then handed the solution.

Coffee helps me focus. It tastes great. It’s fun — what, I can stop any time I want…!

Anyway, Judgey McJudgerson, so I love me some coffee. But in the Australian summer, I can’t go gargling something that’s liable to make my body temp spike and cause me to burst into flames. Those flames would only attract flame eating drop bears who would slay my family and steal whatever coffee reserves I have left. Aw, hell no.

So I did what any respecting addict would do – I adapted.


^^^That up there is the solution. I’ll get my writing Gaul potion to match the environment, but how?

I considered just making coffee and letting it cool, but I’ve consumed the cold dregs from the mug before and they did not satisfy.

Then I thought about making iced coffee, but after some googling (and finding out people are out there making salted caramel iced coffee in their homes – which, as good as it sounds, is probably the equivalent of being able to lick yourself like a dog, you’ll just never leave the house and fall into twitter irrelevance) – I finally did what seemed most obvious, I went to a coffee guy and asked.

Luckily for me, great mate and Aussie comic writer Ben Rosenthal makes coffee his living so I dropped him a line and he gave up all his secrets. So, below, presented for the first time, is my modified recipe for home brew iced coffee RKLstyle. Enjoy.


Geddit, because it sounds like ‘brew’ but also makes the beverage sound a little European and fancy schmancy.



Coffee – really, whatever floats your boat, I’m currently in a tin of AVALANCHE, ymmv

Cold water – I use what’s been boiled before and cooled in the kettle because I assume it’s the cleanest water in the house, again, ymmv

Sugar – I rock a Low GI Raw Sugar that I find is kindest on my system – too much refined and processed sugar is my mortal enemy

Caramel syrup – I use Bickford’s, but am currently rocking some homemade from my sis-in-law – you may not even want caramel, whatever, make your own recipe, jeeeeeez

Milk – I will not prescribe, I’m using whatever is available in this house – which on any given day can be dairy (nice), oat (nice), rice (relatively nice, surprisingly depends on the brand), almond (blech), and I’ve even spied soy and just lactose free (have yet to use)


Cup – I use a 500ml tupperware sealable soup mug

Spoon – I use a cafe spoon because I’m super fancy like that

Kettle – see above


Sounds fancier than ‘Steps,’ right? See, I told you — ‘fancy’

I put the coffee into the mug – I use like 4 spoonfuls for this mug, it’s going to make two large drinks

I put the sugar into the mug – whatever level of sweetness you like – coffee is just an intricate sugar delivery system for me, so I won’t embarrass myself by saying how much I use

Add the water to the mug, seal, and put in the fridge

Do all this at night for tomorrow’s drinks

The next day (I drink mine at night to fuels the words, so mine gets ~20 hours to soak/steep but you can do less, it’s fine), pour the coffee into a drinking receptacle – I use a glass stein, pictured below, and I pour enough coffee in for half the stein, which is half the mug gone, cioncidence? – and you can use a filter to really get the party started, either a real filter, a piece of paper towel, or maybe just your ironic xmas sweater t-shirt

Add milk to taste

Stir in caramel syrup

Consume cold – you could probably add ice, I’m too lazy and the drink never lasts long enough to need it


I have found this iced coffee to be insanely quick and easy to make, delicious, and it’s doing the job – these words were typed in about 80 seconds, I counted.

I hope you dig. Feel free to change it up, add that salted caramel to your world, but I wanted to post this here so someone out there might be emboldened to try their own and not feel the fear I was consumed by, drinking my steaming coffee in desert conditions, and ruining countless keyboards with the sweat dripping out of my beard.


Cue the ‘real home baristas gang,’ with their filter/bandannas slung low, telling me I’m doing it wrong in 3…2…..1….