Espresso with Ice
How to Prepare Iced Espresso
If your cafe is located in a hot climate, chances are that in the hotter months you will serve many iced drinks. For example, cafes on the west coast of the United States serve up to 50% of their drinks iced in the summer. The key to serving great iced coffees is looking after the ice.
The thing to understand with ice is that ‘frozen’ doesn’t just mean zero degrees. Some ice can be minus 50° C, and some might be just below zero. Many ice machines don’t produce very cold ice, and the tray where they drop the ice is often not a freezer at all; it is just insulated. To avoid having your ice melt too quickly, it is important to know how much ice your machine can produce per hour. If you have a less-powerful machine, we recommend you use cafe down-times to accumulate ice reserves, which you may be able to store in an ancillary freezer.
Your cafe may not have a freezer, in which case it might have ice delivered each day. In this situation, you will need to store the ice in a refrigerator or insulated cooler box. Be sure you have a plan for the accumulation of melted ice. Ice will melt more quickly when it is floating in water. Air is slower than water at transferring heat.
Obtaining ice to make iced drinks can be time consuming. If you are not lucky enough to have an ice dispenser right at your bar, it is helpful to keep a small, insulated box of ice at the bar where it is needed. This will alleviate the need to leave your station every time a customer orders an iced drink.
Many customers prefer a little bit of sugar with their iced coffees, even if they drink their hot coffees without sugar. This is to do with the physiology of the tongue and increased sensitivity to sweetness at higher temperatures.