10 Must-Try Iced Coffee Drinks in LA

By Lesley Balla  |  February 25, 2014

Since a cool day in LA is still pretty balmy, iced coffee drinks are the de facto city fuel. Every shop worth its third-wave beans serves something chilled and buzz-filled, be it a 10-hour cold brew, a fizzy espresso or a frozen coffee topped with whipped cream. Here are 10 spots to find the Best Iced Coffees in LA - for those times when you need a cold jolt.

  • Iced Horchata Latte at Tierra Mia

    You can get an array of Latin-inspired coffee drinks at all Tierra Mia outposts, including the busy spot in Downtown LA - anything from a mocha Mexicano to a Cubano con leche. Our go-to? The iced horchata latte, which blends two great flavors in one: the creamy, sweet, cinnamon-spiced Mexican beverage and espresso made with Tierra Mia's own roasted beans.

    Multiple Locations

  • Caffe Shakerato and Frizzante at Caffe Luxxe

    The tony coffee shops in Brentwood and Santa Monica feature proprietary locally roasted beans in all of the drinks, including the hand-shaken combo of espresso, milk, simple syrup and dark chocolate. To really taste the espresso (sans chocolate), get the Frizzante, made with slightly sweetened espresso, spritzy water and ice.

    Multiple Locations

  • Aunt Nancy’s Shakerato at Single Origin

    The little coffee bar at Short Cake, inside the Original Farmers Market, serves pour-over single-origin brews. Aunt Nancy’s Shakerato is an homage to Nancy Silverton, who partnered with original owner Amy Pressman and Bill Chait when the bakery debuted. Four shots of Verve coffee, cold-brewed with fresh roasted chicory over a 24-hour period, is blended with Straus milk and a touch of simple syrup for a balanced and perfect wallop.

    6333 W. Third St.; 323-761-7976

  • Granita at Caffe Vita

    The Silver Lake outpost of the Seattle import has been packed from the get-go. All of the coffee is fantastic, but while waiting for your pour-over, you may notice two machines of something frozen behind the bar. That's espresso granita. Get it. The icy caffeinated treat is topped with fresh whipped cream that, as it melts, turns the whole thing into a perfectly sweet, creamy iced coffee.

    4459 W. Sunset Blvd.; 323-663-6340

  • Vietnamese Coffee at Cafe Dulce

    Vietnamese coffee can be really intense at a lot of places due to the amount of condensed milk added in each cup, but at this Little Tokyo spot, LAMILL espresso is cut with just the right amount of milk. It’s one of the better versions in the city, and goes particularly well with the spirulina churros, bacon-topped donuts and other unique pastries at the cafe.

    134 Japanese Village Plaza Mall; 213-346-9910

  • Iced Angeleno at Intelligentsia

    The drink made just for LA when Chicago-based Intelligentsia pulled into town: four shots of Black Cat espresso shaken with ice, agave nectar and rich Straus milk. It’s sweet, it’s frothy, and it works just as well on hot days as it does on cool ones. 

    Multiple Locations

  • Coffee Float at Float

    Although the sweet Pasadena shop serves Handsome espresso and coffee for iced lattes and coffee, it specializes in floats - carbonated sodas with a scoop of ice cream. Among the many, many sodas to choose from, there’s Manhattan Special Espresso Coffee Soda, which is great with a bit of cream but even better with a scoop of Fosselman’s vanilla ice cream for a bubbly twist on iced coffee.

    380 S. Lake Ave.; 626-844-3488

  • Blanca y Negro at LAMILL

    Sure, you could get an ordinary iced coffee at the Silver Lake coffee boutique. But the Blanca y Negro is a treat: coffee ice (made from the house brew) topped with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. The more it melts, the creamier and sweeter it gets.

    1636 Silver Lake Blvd.; 323-663-4441

  • Iced Mocha at Cacao Mexicatessen

    The iced mochas at the Eagle Rock staple are earthy and slightly sweet blends of espresso, Oaxacan chocolate, vanilla, almonds and cinnamon. Spice things up with dash of chile powder.

    1576 Colorado Blvd.; 323-478-2791

  • Cold-Brew at Espresso Cielo

    The chic little Santa Monica coffee shop features 49th Parallel coffee brewed in many forms to exact standards. In the cup, mixed with your choice of milk and sweetener, an iced coffee looks like iced coffee. But the Espresso Cielo is brewed via a towering Kyoto drip-style apparatus over the course of 10 hours: it's nothing short of coffee, water and magic.

    3101 Main St.; 310-314-9999