Your morning routine of picking up a coffee at your favorite cafe before heading into the office has probably changed over the past few months of quarantine. Sure, you might still occasionally grab a cup to-go down the block but, just like cooking, most drinks are likely being made in your own kitchen. So, as the temps are rising, stay cool in your space by trying out new recipes and ideas for at-home iced coffee drinks. You'll be a barista in no time.
If you're a coffee lover, you already know the slew of variations on the caffeinated drink. For a beverage that's a bit stronger and will keep you energized throughout the day, cold brew is probably what you need. "Cold brew is a super robust beverage that is created by steeping coffee grounds often 18 to 24 hours, resulting in a thick concentrate that is often enjoyed after being cut with water and milk," Matthew Jung-Quillen, Chief Business Officer at Sey Coffee in Brooklyn, tells TZR.
But if you aren't fond of the intense flavor cold brew delivers, there are plenty of toned-down options. "If you want an iced coffee that really highlights the bright sparkling flavors of a single origin, I would try a hot brew over ice method where you replace a portion of the brewing water with an equal amount of ice below your dripper," Michael Phillips, Blue Bottle's Director of Coffee Culture, tells TZR.
Some of the recipes below require special coffee devices, while others simply include ground coffee, ice, and water. So without further ado, below, find eight ways to make iced coffee extra special this summer.
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Iced Coffee Drink: Tokyo Iced Coffee
Arguably one of the easiest ways to upgrade the classic drink is via a method or style known as Tokyo Iced Coffee. Keba Konte, founder of Red Bay Coffee based in Oakland, California, explains the process behind this method. "You’re basically doing a pour over on top of a graft filled with ice," says Konte to TZR. "You double the amount of your ground coffee, bring your water to a boil, let the rolling bubbles still, and then you pour your pour over the same as you would with your separate glass, with ice in it." In regards to the coffee amount needed for the drink, Konte says to adjust to taste.
Iced Coffee Drink: Cold Brew
"I am a fan of the Blue Bottle Hario cold brew bottle for ease of use," Phillips notes. "It is super simple to set up and makes a perfect strength, thirst-quenching iced coffee." Phillips says to add 55 grams to the filter basket and fill with water up to the line of the bottle. After letting it sit for 12 to 24 hours, remove the filter basket and sip away.
But if you don't have the Hario cold brew bottle, the coffee connoisseur says cold brew is really easy to make with what you have in your kitchen. However, it will likely be a bit grittier. He suggests starting with a pound of coarsely ground coffee and one gallon of water. Next, you'll combine the two in your glass of choice, then stir until the coffee is fully saturated. "Let sit for 12 to 24 hours, then strain by pouring the liquid through a metal mesh sieve or cheese cloth into another container, and there is your cold brew concentrate. At this point, you add water to dilute it down to the strength you desire and you are good to go!"
Iced Coffee Drink: Kalita Wave
Jung-Quillen suggests brewing coffee hot, and then cooling the drink by using a device like a Coldwave. "With this technique, you'll be able to avoid the heavy, flavor neutralizing effects of cold brewing, as well as staying away from diluting your beverage via melted ice," he says. At Sey Coffee, they like manual brewing with a Kalita Wave or V60 pour over methods, aiming for a TDS (total dissolved solids) of 1.35 percent, which is a way of measuring the strength of coffee. It's usually measured in percentages, and the stronger the percent, the stronger the coffee. Lastly, you'll the drink needs to cool.
"This preserves the nuance and characteristics of the high-quality coffee you purchased, and also allows you to experience an increase in sweetness and acidities as the beverage cools," Jung-Quillen explains. "You will have an opportunity to taste the quality and characteristics of the coffee, versus the impact of over-steeping or dilution."
Iced Coffee Drink: Hotel Chevalier
At Dayglow coffee shop in Los Angeles, founder Tohm Ifergan says its most popular drink is the Hotel Chevalier. "It’s tropical, balanced, and refreshing," Ifergan tells TZR. To make the drink, you'll need 3 oz. coffee distillate. "We brew coffee hot, flash chill it, and then put it through a three stage distillation process," Ifergan explains. "The idea is that you are separating the dissolved solids (coffee) from the liquid."
The expert says the clear, aromatic brew still maintains some caffeine and coffee flavor. He says to do this at home you'll need a home distiller set up, so to substitute this portion you can use espresso or concentrated cold coffee. Additionally, you'll need .5 oz lime juice, 1 oz. coconut cream, and a garnish of fresh mint and grated nutmeg.
Iced Coffee Drink: Flash Brewed
Short on time? Try out a flash brew iced coffee. "Flash brew is brewing with hot water over ice," Laila Ghambari, Director of Cafes at Stumptown Coffee, tells TZR. Follow the same water to coffee recipe, 60 grams coffee per 1,000 grams of water or 1:16 ratio, but you'll make a portion of the water with ice that melts and cools as you continue brewing. Ghambari says an example of this is to grab a Chemex and put 400 grams of ice in the carafe. Then, put 60 grams of coarse ground coffee in the filter, and use 600 grams of water to brew.
Iced Coffee Drink: Cinnamon Bun Latte
If you have a sweet tooth, LaNisa Williams, creator of Barista Life LA, gives the scoop on how to make a cinnamon bun latte. For the syrup flavoring, you'll need two pumps, approximately one tablespoon, of brown sugar cinnamon syrup in a cup with two pumps, approximately one tablespoon, of milk. For the espresso, all you need is 8 oz. of cold brew iced shaken. Williams says any milk of choice will do. And to finish the tasty drink off, garnish with cinnamon on top and whipped cream.
Iced Coffee Drink: Iced Latte
An iced latte is a great option if want a drink that's less intense. Jeremy Lyman, co-founder of Birch Coffee in New York City, says all you need is concentrate and your milk of choice. "If you use one part of the concentrate, and dilute it with milk, you can make yourself almost like a latte." Lyman says you'll want to use four parts milk to one part concentrate to achieve the caffeinated drink. But, he adds that a lot of it is just taste and whatever works for you. If you want it stronger, he says to add less milk.
Iced Coffee Drink: Life Aquatic
Another fan favorite recipe at Dayglow is its Life Aquatic. This coffee cocktail requires 2 oz. of espresso or concentrate, Ifergan says an AeroPress is a inexpensive way to achieve this, 3 oz. of Califia Farms Coconut Better Half, 1/2 oz. passionfruit syrup (Dayglow likes using Som Cordial shrub vinegars), three to four dashes of Bittermens Tiki Bitters, and garnish with citrus and pineapple. The founder's pro tip is to smoke the pineapple with applewood using a Breville Smoking Gun for amazing aromatics.