The County Line Kitchen cold brew coffee maker is a practical design which captures the aesthetic of a traditional homestead. The screw-top lid can be purchased with or without a handle. The flip lid is very convenient and pours well. The brewer is airtight with a silicone seal, and you can also fit the mason jar with a traditional metal screw cap.
Overall, the Toddy Cold Brew System is a high-quality product. It’s well thought out from eco-friendliness to aesthetic appeal to the practicalities of brewing and storage. The only feature we found lacking was the temperamental filter.
Brewing with the County Line Kitchen is very easy and straightforward. It’s not necessary to weigh or measure either grounds or water. Just fill the filter and jar as described below.
Although decanting is just a question of removing the filter, its lower level of filtration means you may want to refilter or further decant the contents. For the 1-quart jar, we had to use a bottle brush to scrub it out.
Making cold brew coffee can be messy. The purpose of a cold brew coffee maker is to make brewing and decanting as easy as possible. There are more steps to the Toddy system than you’ll find in a simple immersion filter brewer. However, it produced superior results and the whole process can be made easier if you use a paper filter bag.
We found the brew quality of the County Line Kitchen cold brew coffee maker to be promising. It did well to bring out sweet profiles, but at the same time, the brew lacked complexity. We recommend brewing for longer than our test standard of 18 hours. The amount of sediment indicated that the filter was not so effective, but nonetheless a good compromise on the brew quality.
The test of any cold brew coffee maker is ultimately the coffee it produces. Our repeated testing found that the Toddy makes the best cold brew coffee. Specifically, it’s the most rounded, full-bodied, and complex brew with a balance towards sweeter flavors. Its filtration system, although not the most convenient, is highly effective.
Pros & Cons
- Versatile product
- Minimal packaging
- Packed and shipped in the US
- Robust and durable
- Airtight silicone gasket
- Minimal parts
- No over-packaging
- Ergonomic components
- Attractive carafe
- Included paper filter bags
- Cold or hot brewing
- Brew strength average
- Filter not so effective
- Felt filter tends to clog
- No brew vessel markings
County Line Kitchen is a popular mason jar type brewer and comes in two jar sizes: 1-quart and 2-quart. The screw-on lid with a flip cap is one of the most convenient and practical designs for a brew carafe. Both brewers are an easy fit for a refrigerator door, and can be laid on their side for storage once the filter is removed.
For an immersion-style brewer, the County Line Kitchen has a favorable brew ratio of 1:9, whereas the Toddy, using a free-style brew system, has a brew ratio of 1:4.6. The Toddy, of course, produces a full strength cold brew concentrate which can be further diluted to one part coffee and three parts water. County Line Kitchen, at best, has a 1:1 dilution ratio.
Both brewers come as eco-friendly packages. With County Line Kitchen, you can choose a brewer with or without a handle attached to the lid. The Toddy comes with a felt filter and two additional paper filter bags.
Behind the Comparison
Roger Shitaki is a writer, author, and editor. His niches are household appliances, health & wellness, and travel. He’s a freelance contributor to a Tokyo lifestyle website and a leading ophthalmology magazine in Asia.