Iced coffee is an extremely popular drink, but iced coffee has only really been popular in the United States for about the last two decades. Iced coffee drinks started to gain popularity in 1995 when Starbucks introduced their Frappuccino’s, but they weren’t the first place to offer an iced/iced blended coffee drink. At the Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf, a barista invented the Ice Blended in Westwood, California in 1987. The explosion of iced coffee really started in 2009 and didn’t end until about 2013. There’s a couple of theories about what caused explosion of iced coffee from 2009-2013, some including that young adult at the time grew up with cold beverages, and they wanted to have same experience with coffee, that iced coffee was a better alternative to energy drinks, and/or that people liked the aesthetic of iced coffee. Though iced coffee became popular relatively recently in the US, people around the world were drinking iced coffee before the mid 90’s and early 2000’s.
There isn’t an exact place of origin for iced coffee. In the 17th century, after a Turkish army left Vienna with a surplus of coffee beans, the people in Vienna were experimenting with different ways of making coffee, which included icing it. In the 19th century, when the French were seizing Algeria, during the Siege of Mazagran, troops would drink coffee with cold water. This was due to milk running out, the troops needing a way to deal with the heat in Algeria, and as a way to stay hydrated. When the troops returned to France, they would ask for the drink at cafes, which led to its popularity, and the drink was coined the Café Mazagran. The drink consists of coffee, or coffee syrup, with water, a little bit of sweetener, and maybe a slice of lemon. The Café Mazagran can still be purchased at some cafes in France today. Later down line other places had their own discoveries/created their own version of iced coffee.
In Vietnam there’s the Ca Phe Sua Da, which consists of very dark roast coffee that goes through a metal “Phin” filter and thrown over ice and mixed with sweetened condensed milk. In Japan, their method of making iced coffee is throwing hot coffee over ice, which allows it to cool faster and preserve its taste. In Sweden there’s the Kaffelemonad, which consists of iced coffee mixed with lemon juice, or it can be made with tonic water, lemon zest, and coffee ice cubes. In Brazil there’s the Mocha Cola, which consists of cold brewed coffee and Coca-Cola, topped with ice cream. In Greece there’s the Greek Frappe, which consists of coffee, water, sugar, ice, and milk, all shaken to which results in a milkshake like coffee.
Iced coffee has continued to stay relatively popular, considering its boom back in 2013. You can go into any Cafe and be able to order an iced coffee with no issue and that doesn’t seem like it’s going to change anytime soon. There’s a multitude of places that sells iced coffee from Dunkin Donuts, McDonald’s, Cumberland Farms, and any coffee shop you may pass on the street.
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