About Kyoto Black

Hi, I'm Justin, owner & founder of Kyoto Black.  I am a cold brew fanatic and I created Kyoto Black because I believe Kyoto Style is the best way to cold brew coffee.  Kyoto Style coffees have better flavors, smoother textures and no sediment. Oddly enough, the style is mostly unknown, even though cold brew has exploded in popularity.  

My first experience drinking Kyoto Style cold brew was in 2011.  That cup was not great, but the experience of drinking it was so different that I had to pursue it.  Kyoto Style clearly had a lot of potential and I wanted to unlock it.  One year later I was brewing Kyoto Style coffee at home every single day.

I am constantly refining my technique, always pushing to make a smoother, stronger and sweeter cup of coffee.  That has always been the goal.  And it shows. Kyoto Black is perfectly balanced and strong enough to shine regardless of how its prepared.

My select blend of dark roasted Brazilian and medium roasted Guatemalan beans give you the best of both worlds.  It is strong, and sweet, thick, but smooth.  The flavors are familiar but you will swear my coffee is different.  And it is different.  

Kyoto Black is not just a cold brew, it is a full sensory experience.  I started making it as a hobby because I wanted to learn more about coffee through cold brewing.  In the process, I learned more than I could've imagined. 

What is Kyoto Style Cold Brew?

Typical cold brewed coffees are made by steeping coffee grounds in large vats of cold water for up to 24 hours.  This coffee slurry is then strained and filtered.  This process can yield good coffee, but there are problems with it.

Despite the filtering process, steeped cold brews tend to be murky with sediment. This is why many cold brews have muddled flavors or a flabby mouthfeel.  Not to mention, they also look cloudy and unappealing.  However, because this process is cheap, most companies are happy to use it.  Steeping allows them to produce cold brew in batches of over 1,000 liters at a time.

Kyoto Style cold brew on the other hand, is made in small batches, one drop at a time.  Kyoto Style is currently the only method for making drip cold brew; all other styles rely on steeping grounds.  This matters because drip coffees have cleaner, clearer flavors than steeped coffees. And since fresh water is constantly dripped on the grounds, the extraction is ideal.

I take Kyoto Style a step further.  Using my deep coffee expertise, I've been able to take the process to the next level. My way of doing things is very labor intensive, but the difference is well worth it ;)


 Where can I find Kyoto Black?

 Our flagship location is 1445 W. Devon Ave. 

 Click the interactive map below to see all of the locations in Chicago that carry Kyoto Black.  More to come!




Brew Brew Coffee & Tea

Metropolitan Brewing


Edge of Sweetness

Irving Park

Eris Brewery & Cider House


The Crepe Shop

Lincoln Park

Cornerstone Cafe

The Warehouse Bar & Pizzeria

Logan Square

Billy Sunday

Jimmy Beans Cafe



River North

HiFi Fitness

Ukrainian Village

Tuman's Tap & Grill

West Loop

Soho House

Wicker Park

The Delta

Rakki Cafe

The Wicker Park Outdoor Farmer's Market