No, It is Not Iced Coffee Season

I do love my iced coffee.
A tall glass, lots of ice, and just a splash of cream. When properly made, the coffee is rich and smooth with very low acid, notes of chocolate and caramel, and barely a hint of bitterness. Sugar is superfluous.
Why would anyone want to wait for summertime to enjoy it?

Finally, the rest of you are catching on and catching up.
According to an independent survey commissioned by Dunkin’ Donuts, iced coffee is now seasonless.

More than a fourth of the yearly, billion cups of coffee served by Dunkin’ Donuts are now iced, and 56% of their iced coffee drinkers prefer iced coffee to hot coffee, even during the winter months. 42% said that what they like best is the energy jolt they get from iced coffee—in fact Dunkin’ Donuts uses a double portion of ground coffee in its double-brew method, although melting ice dilutes the double dose of caffeine. 21% said they like that they can gulp it down, while hot coffee requires careful sipping; 18% claimed that their favorite thing about iced coffee is the straw.

It’s never too cold for iced coffee.
Look at ice cream. Alaska leads the nation in per capita consumption, with the chilly states of New England close behind.

Iced coffee is expected to rack up another summer of double-digit sales increases, causing food and beverage businesses to trip over each other with new product launches. There are ready-to-drink, canned and bottled versions coming from Wolfgang Puck, the classic Italian espresso brand, Illy, and Pom Wonderful (better known for its line of pomegranate drinks). Starbucks is pushing its one-ounce-shy-of-a-quart Trenta cup, a new Via instant iced coffee packet designed to be mixed into a standard water bottle, and created a page for its iced frappuccino drinks that became Facebook’s third-largest product fan page in less than a week.

For the record, Dunkin’ Donuts is still the nation’s largest retailer of hot coffee and iced coffee. Let’s also note that 91% of their iced coffee drinkers order it sugared-up with added flavorings (mocha and French vanilla are the favorites). You know my position on sweeteners. But I’ve tasted Dunkin’ Donuts iced coffee and am willing to cut them some slack.

For the summertime purist who believes (however misguidedly) that iced coffee goes in and out of season, there is a pointless but nifty website called Is It Iced Coffee Weather? Plug in your zip code and you’ll get the definitive answer.



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  1. Pingback: Beverage Trends | Gigabiting

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