The question “Can I get an iced coffee, please?” no longer means what it used to.
If you walk up to a barista and use those exact words, they’d probably look at you a little funny.
What flavor? Size? Milk or cream? Sugar? Stevia? Sweet-n-low? What about an espresso shot?
Like everything else, iced coffee has evolved over the years. It wasn’t just magically sent from the heavens one morning, but instead was brewed from a very mysterious history. Some will say it began in France when a not-so-appealing beverage mixed with coffee and lemons was served cold. Others believe in the 19th century Vienna theory where ordinary people took it upon themselves to experiment with a mound of grounds left from the Turkish army.
Imagine that. These people, hundreds of years ago created this drink that we almost NEED nowadays. It sounds so sophisticated when you consider it being brewed in a foreign country so many years ago; especially compared to our quick Dunkin or Starbucks drive through trip now. No matter the origin, iced coffee has been the answer to all of our prayers for years. There are even tons of variations of iced coffee around the world.
Australia serves coffee that tastes like a milkshake. Canada calls their iced coffee “iced Capps”. Germany adds vanilla ice cream to their iced coffee, India makes theirs in a blender, and Japan sells it in a can. The United States may be way ahead of the game, or a little behind all of these iced coffee innovations, but either way we’ve made tons of progress in the world of iced coffee recently.
Starbucks alone serves Vanilla Sweet Cream Cold Brew, Nariño 70 Cold Brew, Nitro Cold Brew, Nitro Cold Brew with Sweet Cream, and then your plain old iced coffee. These variations, of course, don’t include any Frappuccino’s, Macchiatos, or lattes. Dunkin, the other big player in the coffee world lags a little when it comes to the exotic names and complicated brewing processes, but they too offer cold brews, iced lattes, macchiatos, and the OG iced coffee. The fancy names come with a hefty price tag (when you really think about it). But the big players aren’t the only ones breaking our bank.
We all love those small-town coffee house atmospheres that temporarily detach us from reality. The prices might double the second you walk through the door, but that snapchat of you in your beanie holding your coffee at the window-table is worth it right? Not right. Okay so sometimes it’s worth the splurge. But if you were to “splurge” everyday on a $5 iced coffee, you’d be broke. Even the franchises are killing us with iced coffee costing more than hot coffee. Why even is that?
Apparently ice gets expensive. With each iced coffee ordered, the establishment gives away a cup of ice. With the amount of orders these guys see each day, that’s a lot of ice. Also, the plastic cups they use to serve the coffee are pricier than the paper cups used for hot coffee. If that’s not enough, our iced coffee habit requires a straw as well. With all that overhead cost, it’s no wonder we pay more for the cold version of the exact same drink.
So we’ve gone from Vienna or France (who actually knows), to Starbucks, Dunkin, and culture-filled coffee houses. All of which cost us a ton of money. Our addiction fueled spending habits are totally innocent until our wallet thins out or the bank statement shows a trend of loyal $4.00 purchases. Well, there’s been a new breakthrough in the iced coffee industry that may not be so devastating.
If you’re a part of the iced coffee cult, you’d enjoy the new trend. It’s simpler than going through the drive-through or even getting those prepackaged bottles of iced coffee in the check out line at the food store. Are you ready for it? Oh it’s huge… Make your iced coffee at home. If the Italians could do it 300 years ago, you can do it now. There’s even a new Amazon Prime product to help you out. All you have to do is make your coffee hot, pour it in the chiller, wait 2 minutes, and BAM… iced coffee fresh, and at home.
The iced coffee revolution has come 360 from conception to pure genius innovation. The trend may be those plastic cups that turn your expensive iced coffee into water within 10 minutes, but the real winners are using the Coldwave. When given the opportunity to save money and drink the future of iced coffee, take it.