Iced Coffee and Cold Brew: What’s The Difference?

regular iced coffee on the left. Iced coffee with chocolate swirl and whipped cream in the middle. Iced cold brew, black on the right.

It’s the perfect season to Get Un-Thirsty with a Stewart’s Iced Coffee or Cold Brew! But what is the difference between iced coffee and cold brew?


  • Coffee grounds are steeped in cold or room temp water 12-24 hours. It helps create a distinctive coffee experience with a smooth, well-balanced flavor. The longer the coffee sits, the stronger the flavor.
  • Cold brew uses time instead of heat to extract the coffee’s oils, sugars, and caffeine. The result is less acidic and bitter than iced coffee.
  • Stewart’s Cold Brew Coffee is unsweetened.


  • Iced Coffee is steeped in hot water before being cooled down and served over ice.
  • Iced coffee is brewed as normal coffee which is then cooled down.
  • Stewart’s Iced Coffee is pre-sweetened.

Stewart’s hot coffee is created with our own special blend of coffee beans that gives it that one-of-a-kind flavor!  Stewart’s Coffee has been declared as the best around for many years! Capital Region Living Magazine conducts their annual Bestie poll, and Stewart’s Shops has won the vote for Best Coffee in past years!

Our leading competitors do not have this option of “Make Your Own”. This makes us unique. We offer International Delight to create all of our iced/cold brew flavors and have it available for our hot coffee. Our hot coffee uses flavored coffee beans rather than flavor shots that you would see at our competitors.

In the 1980’s Stewart’s Shops became your coffee shop. Selling coffee out of a shop setting was unheard of at the time. To go a step further, we let customers serve themselves right out of our glass pots for a “Make Your Own” concept. This gave customers a sense of ownership and excitement knowing they could make their coffee the way they like it.

What’s Your Flavor?