While many coffee aficionados love a hot, steamy cup of aromatic coffee, some may prefer a delicious and refreshing cold coffee drink that will quench their thirst and satisfy their caffeine fix on a hot, sunny day. Iced lattes are perfect for picky coffee lovers who want something cold than the usual hot beverage.
With tons of espresso machines available in the market, it has become a little overwhelming to know which one is the best coffee maker for iced lattes. How do you find or choose a latte machine that will fit your needs? If you plan on investing in an iced latte machine, it is essential to consider its features, whether you are a newbie or an espresso machine veteran.
What Makes It A Latte Machine?
As you are all familiar with it, a latte is just coffee drenched in milk, with the milk being part of the coffee machine, called the milk frother, which is an essential factor. While other coffee lovers do not worry about the espresso side of the things, it is just a small part of the latte’s overall taste, but we beg to differ. The best latter starts with the best coffee. Your purpose is to find the best coffee maker for iced lattes that handles milk very well.
Does the coffee maker froth milk for you?
First of all, you are aware that making a latte isn’t rocket science. But if you don’t have at least a basic knowledge of the subject, the learning curve may be steep, and there might be a lot of wasted coffee. If you do not have any experience at all, that’s okay. You will have to research how to make it before getting your hands on your machine. Some iced latte makers will froth milk for you, while others will need you to learn how to handle milk.
Semi-Automatic vs. Automatic vs. Super Automatic Latte Machines
One essential thing to consider in deciding whether to buy or not is how much work you are willing to do yourself.
Semi-Automatic Latte Machine
If your budget is a little modest, you have decent barista skills, and you like a blend of control with convenience, a semi-automatic machine might be a good option. Also, if latte art is your thing, semi-autos are excellent.
Semi-automatic machines have three advantages:
- Price – A mid-range and budget-friendly price for most coffee lovers.
- Reliability – It won’t let you down when you need them the most.
- Flexibility – It will allow you to customize your coffee drink.
If you want to have complete control over the whole process, consider getting a semi-automatic espresso machine like the De’Longhi E155 Espresso and Cappuccino Maker. This will give you more control over the whole process.
However, semi-automatic machines may provide lesser convenience as you will need to ramp up your game to get a good cup of coffee. One example is knowing how to use a steaming wand.
Automatic Latte Machine
On the other hand, automatic machines are built for convenience and are, most of the time, user-friendly. Most machines include built-in coffee grinders that let you add and grind coffee beans automatically with just a push of a button. They also have an automatic milk frother that takes the place of a steam want (and won’t let you require to learn to use one).
An automatic latte machine usually does most of the work for you. But, there are still some manual interventions that need to be done
Super-Automatic Latte Machine
These machines are way more expensive than semi-automatic ones. So, if you have a bigger budget, a die-hard ‘latteholic’ and you don’t mind giving up control over your brewing process, this machine may be right for you.
A super-automatic latte machine takes over the whole process from bean to cup. It’s just like having a mini coffee shop in your kitchen. Super-automatics are more stable in producing consistent quality every time, as there is little to no human intervention.
It is also worthy to note that most of the best coffee makers for iced lattes (whether manual or automatic) are essentially single-serve machines because of the drink’s nature. As the milk’s temperature rises, lactose becomes more soluble. Thus, the sweetness becomes more noticeable. It’s not because of the milk is sweeter, but, as it heats up, the perceived sweetness also increases.
What to Consider
Coffee does not have to be complicated at all. However, there are some points that you need to keep in mind, though.
- Iced lattes are made of espresso with milk and poured over ice.
- Espresso has much finer coffee grain than regular coffee.
- A regular coffee maker uses a simple drip process in making coffee. In contrast, an espresso machine uses high pressure to force and push water swiftly through the coffee grounds.
As you can see, you don’t need a coffee machine with a built-in frother to make fantastic iced lattes. While the focus here is on the best coffee maker for iced lattes, some people want a machine that can make a whole spectrum of specialized coffee drinks.
Although making lattes from scratch with the best coffee maker for iced lattes is every aspiring home barista’s dream goal, it is sometimes acceptable to take the easy route and snag that super-automatic latte machine. But, there’s no reason for you not to make lattes from scratch with just the simplest form of iced latte makers. If you do plan on getting one, make sure to consider that the features you’re looking for are fit for your taste and preference. Here’s more to learn about lattes.