Iced coffee season for the most devout cold caffeine consumers knows no time limits, but for the rest of us casual drinkers who dabble in hot coffee (depending on the weather), the iced coffee season runs approximately from 70 to 105 degrees, or usually June through September.
For the brief window of time when our hands can benefit from holding an icy beverage, here are some iced coffee and espresso drinks to try.
For a traditional iced coffee
The Intersection Cafe, 100 Elmwood Ave.
Allentown's hole-in-the-wall cafe brims with character, evident by the circulating art and abundance of bright flyers. It's worth a drop-in for an iced coffee just to stay up-to-date with the latest cultural events. Sit on the sidewalk patio to become a flaneur of city life in Allentown, as cars zoom by, dogs trot past and your iced coffee collects condensation.
For a cold brew
JAM Parkside, 301 Parkside Ave.
Cold brew flooded the cult coffee scene a few years ago, providing coffee connoisseurs with a slightly different iced coffee alternative. According to "Today," cold brew is brewed for a longer amount of time, usually 12 to 24 hours and is less acidic. JAM Parkside, the new community funded coffee shop across from the Buffalo Zoo, brews a picture-perfect iced cup of joe. Take it to-go and walk across the street to Delaware Park.
For an iced macchiato
Tipico Coffee, 128 Fargo Ave.
Inside sunny, minimalist Tipico, order a macchiato. The macchiato, a swirly blend of espresso, milk and foam, is as fun to drink as it is to say. Creamy on its own or sweet with caramel syrup, which is often added to turn the beverage into more of a dessert drink, this is a "treat yourself" order. Tipico's relaxing ambiance makes it a place to loiter for a while, savoring your treat.
For an iced mocha
Overwinter Coffee, 9 Genesee St.
While Buffalo's coffee shop scene thrives, the roastery sphere is relatively undersaturated. For espresso drinks with freshly roasted beans, Overwinter's small menu is like that of a specialty restaurant. Order the specialty -- espresso-- in the form of a mocha, a chocolatey, sugary blend of espresso and syrup.
For a whole lot of espresso
Craft Coffee House, 6535 Cambell Blvd., Pendleton
Craft Coffee House is a small haul from the city but worth the gas for an espresso menu that deviates from the norm. You can order a red eye at Starbucks, but at Craft Coffee you can get an iced black eye -- a dangerous concoction of coffee and two shots of espresso. Even its name is intimidating.
For a frozen, blended drink
Clarence Center Coffee Co., 9475 Clarence Center Road, Clarence Center
Starbucks popularized frappuccinos, a milkshake-like blended espresso drink with flavoring. Locally, this Clarence cafe does them well, offering sweet icy drinks that are much closer in relation to ice cream than coffee. The Nutty Irishman frappe is a drinkable, frozen version of one of those brown and green chocolate mints at the bottom of hostess' mint jars and your grandparent's house, in the best way.