I'm glad to address the "Japanese" part by telling the story:
As I mention in the video, I was a barista in the 80s and 90s, and iced coffee here was universally prepared in one of the following ways: 1. hot coffee was brewed and put in the jug in the refrigerator. 2. leftover hot coffee was put in the refrigerator. 3. "toddy" was made, although this was unusual in coffee shops as it was relatively labor intensive.
On trips to Japan in the 90s, I experienced coffees that had aromatics, flavors, acidity; all the things that were missing in hot-brewed refrigerated, or cold-brewed coffee. So I reached out to Mr. Hayashi, head of the Hayashi Coffee Institute, the most respected coffee institution in Japan. Over the course of about a year, Mr. Hayashi generously educated me about the history and practice of iced coffee in Japan, and focused on equipment that was designed to allow coffee to brew on top of ice, and allow the melting ice to dilute the coffee to the correct temperature. While it's not a huge logical jump, it was just not a part of the practice anywhere besides Japan. Particularly important was that in Japan iced coffee had a legitimate place in the coffee canon, whereas here it was thought of as a distasteful perversion of iced tea, and in Europe iced coffee was very very rare (with the exception of the transcendent Southern-Italian Granita di Caffe, but I digress).
In North Carolina, I adapted what I had learned from Mr. Hayashi to equipment I had handy; a Melitta carafe, a Bunn filter basket, an ice cube tray, and a Bodum kettle. (this was 2004, before you could easily get any Japanese coffee preparation equipment). I was trying to adapt the process built into Japanese iced coffee makers like the Hario Fretta and the Kalita Ice N Hot, which were unavailable in the states at the time.
I dubbed the process "the Japanese Iced Coffee" technique out of gratitude and respect for Mr. Hayashi and the insights I got from Japanese iced coffee. I get that the Massachusetts contingent perceives it as phony and romantic, but I think it comes from a good place. I'm sticking with that nomenclature, but I respect those who have renamed it "ice brew" or "flash chilled".
I haven't yet found a coffee that I think works better cold-brewed than Japanese iced. I am intrigued, however, by Lorenzo Perkins' hybrid method, I think he calls it "Hot Bloomed Cold Brewed" which probably has some potential, although there are some pitfalls there.
By the way, in my view, the all-time champ of Japanese Iced Coffee is Yirgacheffe coffees. The lemon-jasmine complements the method perfectly. Perfectly!
Happy summer, you guys.
counter culture coffee