Hot Hot Hot? Make It Cold Cold Cold (Brew)!
Buster Poindexter must have been in the throes of summer when he sang his Billboard chart hit Hot Hot Hot in 1987.
I love starting off my mornings with a hearty brew of coffee – I’m addicted and freely admit, a coffee snob. But when it’s Hot Hot Hot smack in the middle of summer with steady temps pushing 100 degrees, I gotta ditch the morning hot coffee for an iced cup of joe.
A few years ago I wasn’t overly thrilled with an iced latte or cold brew first thing in the morning. But when it was already hitting 87+ degrees at 4 a.m., I kind of got to liking the cold caffeine snap to launch my day. After a few mornings of having my icy latte, I was “hooked” (line and sinker).
It’s easy to brew your own favorite coffee, then pour it over a glass of ice, with or without milk, cream or sugar, to your own personal liking. You can brew a whole pot today and keep the unused portion in the fridge to use later in the day or for tomorrow.
You can also pick up “cold brew” coffee at your local stores and supermarkets. There’s an explosion of iced and cold brewed coffees at the supermarket. They come in every size and a multitude of flavors like vanilla, chocolate, etc., as well as plain. Some come with or without sugar or cream.
Some cold brews are “ready to drink,” some are concentrates that you mix with water or milk/cream (just follow the label). Throughout the summer I keep cold brew concentrates in the fridge to start off my day with a cold brew iced latte. The “ready to drink” single serving size iced coffees are great for traveling (toss in a cooler) or to take to work. If you, too, love your caffeine fix, try several brands and do your own taste test. Here are my personal favorites to get you started:
When it comes to the cold brew coffee hookup, Trader Joe’s got you covered. They carry three cold brew concentrates and all are simply quite fabulous:
TRADER JOE’S COLD BREW CONCENTRATE: This 32 oz. bottle makes 12-8 oz. cups. Using Arabica beans, I love the bold flavor to give me a subtle morning jolt — perfect to combat any summer heat wave.
TRADER JOE’S COCONUT CONCENTRATE: A must for coconut fanatics. It’s got a heavy pop of coconut infused into a smooth, dark roast. It ices up well giving you that coconut-beachy vibe.
TRADER JOE’S FRENCH ROAST ORGANIC CONCENTRATE: Merci Beaucoup to TJ’s for bringing us 32 oz. of pure French delight! This will please any fan of deliciously smooth French roast coffee.
GEVALIA KAFFE: 100% Arabica coffee, this is one of the best coffees around, yet gets little publicity. While I haven’t seen any cold brew by this company, I sometimes brew a fresh pot of their coffee, let it cool a bit, then pour it over ice with lowfat milk. Gevalia was founded in 1853 in Sweden – so they’ve had over 150 years of practice giving us one terrific cup of coffee! This stellar coffee comes in a variety of mild to bold. It’s smooth, never bitter, and is packed with a rich flavor. Whether you like your coffee hot or iced, don’t overlook this steadfast coffee. Like your coffee bold? Try Gevalia Majestic Roast “Bold” — you won’t be disappointed.
COFFEE SMOOTHIES ANYONE? Need that extra afternoon caffeine boost? How about a coffee smoothie? Using leftover hot coffee or cold brew coffee: Blend a dollop of chocolate or vanilla ice cream, coffee, a couple ice cubes and milk and you got yourself a refreshing mid-day smoothie with a coffee bean blast. Whipped cream optional!
So while it may be HOT HOT HOT outside keep cooly caffeinated by keeping your coffee ICED ICED ICED!