For coffee lovers, there’s nothing more frustrating than feeling like they’ve mastered an elaborate iced coffee only to have their confidence crushed once they’ve administered the final touch. Alas, rather than float atop its lofty perch, the foam crown seeps slowly into the drink
, morphing the distinct tiers into a monotone beige liquid–dissolving one’s spirit right along with the layers.
A more recent chapter in coffee’s centuries-long history, cold foam was introduced by Starbucks in 2014
. It wasn’t long before the rest of the country, then subsequently the world, caught on and followed suit. Today, coffee enthusiasts across the globe continue to seek inspiration from the ubiquitous American coffee house when whipping up frothy toppings of their own.
In its most basic form, cold foam comprises a plain milk froth that’s sweetened with some simple syrup and whipped until stiff to cap a cold coffee beverage.
Making one at home is easy on the surface: combine milk and simple syrup (one teaspoon of the latter for every four tablespoons of the former) in a long, narrow jar, then submerge a hand-held frother, letting it whip for around 20 seconds. As it gained momentum, cold froth evolved into flavour infusion so, if desired, add a dash of vanilla extract or a flavoured syrup like pumpkin spice, mint, cinnamon, and chocolate before frothing.
When it comes to hot foam, whole milk yields the most substantial froth as the creaminess factor dwindles as the milk’s fat content wanes. But the opposite holds true for cold foam–the less fat, the better. Regardless of the milk or contraption implemented, the key to a perfect cold foam is the temperature: it has to be cold to stay put.
While the ingredients and steps are straightforward, achieving that magic touch for a perfectly pillowy cold foam has been deceptively difficult–until now. De’Longhi’s LatteCrema Cool Technology, the Eletta Explore machine’s one-touch cold-milk carafe, whips milk at a low temperature to produce sturdy cold froths
that can stand up to any syrup and topping for anyone looking to create elaborate cold beverages at home.
For cold foam, non-dairy alternatives like soy, oat, and almond milk generally don’t hold up as well, but the LatteCrema Cool Technology is also compatible with all of the above, concocting cold froths that are just as creamy as those whipped from standard milk
: for a morning or afternoon pick-me-up, this Cold Tiki Vegan Latte
does the trick. It calls for almond syrup, cinnamon powder, grated ginger, and lime, resulting in a zestful spiced hodgepodge that fosters a second wind.