As warmer weather months draw closer, your summer beverage menu is likely at the forefront of your mind. With sugary soda sales trending downward, and the sparkling water craze surging on, many restaurants and cafes are now combining two of the world’s favorite beverages to offer consumers an innovative and refreshing soft drink option called coffee soda.
These days, you can find coffee soda and carbonated iced coffee in coffee shops, restaurants, bars, and ready-to-drink cans at the supermarket. The delicious, bubbly brew has piqued customers’ interest by keeping them not only hydrated but caffeinated too.
What is Coffee Soda?
Coffee soda is a specialty coffee drink that starts as a simple concoction of sparkling water or seltzer and cold or flash-brewed coffee beans. It is typically combined with fresh citrus juices or herbs. The result: a thirst-quenching, caffeinated, effervescent beverage that consumers can’t seem to get enough of.
When you add coffee soda to your beverage menu, indecisive customers won’t have to choose between caffeinated iced coffee or sparkling water to quench their summertime thirst. The fizzy drink blends both products to create one new and exciting soft drink that can be enjoyed at any time of day.
The Role of Citrus in Coffee Soda
Coffee has long been paired with cream or sugar, but if you’re ever in Italy, don’t be surprised if your espresso is served with a twist of lemon peel and a side of carbonated water -- this is commonplace. Some coffee connoisseurs in Italy and Australia have also been known to squeeze lemon or lime juice directly into their cups of joe. But why? Citrus fruits actually complement coffee extremely well as the brightness of these fruity flavors cuts through coffee’s bitterness. The crisp fruits also work to bring out citrus notes that may already be present in some coffee bean varieties.
How to Make Coffee Soda the Simple Way
Now that you understand why coffee soda is this summer’s biggest beverage trend, it’s important to also know how your baristas and bartenders can make these popular drinks in a pinch. Installing a point of use commercial sparkling water dispenser in your coffee house or restaurant will allow your staff to easily dispense fresh, filtered sparkling water for coffee sodas all throughout the day. A sparkling water dispenser also makes it simple for employees to test out new coffee soda recipes on the fly and create their own signature brews.
Try this easy coffee soda recipe to keep your patrons caffeinated and refreshed all summer long:
Easy Coffee Soda Recipe
- Fill a glass with ice
- Add sparkling water over ice, filling the glass halfway
- Fill the rest of the glass with cold-brewed, flash-brewed, or regular drip coffee (make sure it has been cooled)
- (optional) Peel lemon, lime, or orange zest
- (optional) Rub the citrus peel over the rim of the glass then add it to the top of the drink
- Serve - or enjoy it yourself!