What Makes Viennese Iced Coffee So Unique

Whether temperatures are hot or cool, nothing beats the crisp and refreshing taste of iced coffee. The base recipe is simply brewed coffee mixed with ice, per Food Network, but many variations exist all around the world.

In Brazil, for instance, locals treat themselves to a mocha cola, which is cola and chocolate milk mixed with coffee, then topped with either whipped cream or ice cream, per Global Table Adventure. And in Ireland, iced black coffee is mixed with brown sugar and heavy cream, which is often further enhanced with Irish whiskey.

The people of Vienna, Austria, are also coffee connoisseurs and know a thing or two about utilizing liqueur and heavy amounts of whip cream to level up fresh espresso (via Flight Centre). Hot coffee drinks seem to be the norm, but when it comes to iced coffee, the Viennese iced coffee is a showstopper in both aesthetics and enriched sweet flavors. Here's what makes it so unique.

Similar to an affogato

An affogato is made by combining ice cream or gelato with espresso (brewed hot coffee can be used as well). Think of a Viennese iced coffee as a fancier version of an affogato, but with cold brew coffee or an Americano instead of espresso, as noted by Little Vienna. This dessert + drink combo is then topped with whipped cream and other dustings of magic like dark chocolate shavings or unsweetened cocoa powder.

Though Little Vienna explains that this is the traditional method for making Viennese iced coffee, a separate source, Mon Petit Four, emphasizes that blended iced coffee is often used to separate this drink from its affogato rival. They further note that the mixture is made with brewed coffee, sugar, vanilla extract, hot water, and ice.

Either way, the coffee should be cold, so it doesn't melt the ice cream right away (unlike an affogato). The result should be like an iced coffee float where you taste the coffee and ice cream separately, and if you don't get a little whipped cream on your nose, you're drinking this wrong.

Viennese iced coffee gives the Starbucks Frappuccino a run for its money –- and for good reason. It puts a cool twist on the traditional affogato, and the additions of whipped cream and chocolate on top will eliminate any thoughts of dessert for the day.