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Reuters/Andrew Winning
Starbucks is diving into cold brew.
THE BIG CHILL

Starbucks is betting that “nitro” iced coffee is the next Frappuccino

By Chase Purdy

Starbucks is jumping into the hottest segment of the iced coffee world, adding an eye-catching new brewing method known as “nitro cold brew” in several cities.

Cold brew coffee involves steeping coffee grounds for many hours with cold or room temperature water, which creates a smoother, less bitter tasting coffee. It is then infused with nitrogen for storage; when dispensed from a tap, the coffee is filled with nitrogen bubbles, much like a pint of Guinness.

Nitro cold brew will be rolled out in Seattle, Portland, New York, Chicago, Boston, Los Angeles, and San Francisco this summer. It will be part of a suite of “cold bar” coffee offerings, including cold brew with a ”float” of vanilla-flavored cream, along with traditional iced coffee, espresso, and Frappuccino drinks.

Rival chains Stumptown and Caribou are also selling nitro iced coffee, along with a number of independent coffee shops.