Cold coffee brewing equipment maker CoffeeWorks is thinking small, in a big way. After introducing its line of larger scale brewing equipment three years ago, the same team behind CoffeeWorks has launched a second company, TinyTanks, offering a turnkey brewing system designed to give roasters, retailers and other makers of smaller-batch cold brew more power over their production techniques and filtration.
“CoffeeWorks meets the needs of customers brewing between 125 gallons and 10,000 gallons per batch,” John D. McClafferty, president of both CoffeeWorks TinyTanks told Daily Coffee News. “The original purpose of the TinyTanks systems was to help create brew profiles for customers looking to launch new products or try new recipes. We started to offer this system to large customers and then realized there was a market for standalone units. We came to realize that the boutique producers were left with limited options for innovative equipment.”
McClafferty said that TinyTanks is also aimed at chain restaurants and coffeehouses seeking in-house solutions for high quality cold brew production that would remain consistent under multiple roofs at once.
“The major hurdle was inconsistencies in brewing these individual batches in various locations, along with sanitization,” said McClafferty. “We worked to provide a solution to allow customers consistent brewing methods to develop a repeatable flavor profile, no matter the location.”
Built to produce small to medium batches of 5–30 gallons of RTD coffee or coffee concentrate, the TinyTanks system features stainless steel components, customizable agitation and pump-driven filtration through as many as three different filter options.
Its brew kettle, filter basket, ball valve and hose barb are all made of 304 stainless steel. Filters include stainless steel internal filters and polyester bag filters with polypropylene support rings. Compostable filter plates made of cellulose and a framework to hold them are available as an optional upgrade while providing a range of filtration fineness of 200 microns down to 1 micron.
“Some brewers like having a higher micron filter to allow the coffee more body,” said McClafferty. “Some prefer to have a finer, cleaner finish that is achieved with the lower micron filter. Each brewer will determine for themselves what micron level provides them with the ideal finished product.”
Both the polyester bag filters and the plate and frame systems are single-use, and can be used separately or together. McClafferty said the plate and frame filters are recommended for cleaner, more polished brew with extended shelf life that’s better suited for canning or bottling. With agitation, a finished batch is ready in as little as six hours, after which the filter valve opens for the pump to send brew through the final filter and out into a holding tank or keg.
While TinyTanks and CoffeeWorks systems offer a similar range of features and benefits, one is by no means a miniature of the other, according to McClafferty.
“The systems are entirely different,” said McClafferty. “Both are designed to improve the efficiencies and quality of cold brew, and both are manufactured with high-quality stainless steel and food grade components. However, the process by which to agitate and filter small batches of coffee is entirely different from the agitation and filtration of mass quantities of cold brew coffee.”
Additional TinyTanks components — including a digital flow meter, cooling coil, holding tanks, keg couplers and more — are available as add-ons to the standard system, which is currently priced at $5,495.
TinyTanks continues to develop new features for the system while also collaborating with a team of other professionals to develop an affordable, small scale pasteurization system.