Cool brews: Indie cafés for iced coffee in Vancouver

Local coffee connoisseurs know the best way to stay caffeinated during the dog days of summer is to go the artisanal iced coffee route: think nitrogen-infused cold brew, effervescent espresso tonics and Vietnamese-style iced lattes made with sweetened condensed milk. If you need to beat the heat with a thirst-quenching beverage, pay a visit to these cool indie cafés in Vancouver.

Revolver Coffee

1
325 Cambie St, Vancouver, BC V6B 2N4

The progressive coffee program at Revolver is as surprising and dynamic as the café’s Gastown neighbourhood. The espresso-based drinks are artfully prepared with a rotating roster of beans sourced from around the world. If an iced latte is too milky for your palate, try the made-in-house cold brew coffee. The chilled concoction is steeped overnight for 12 hours and delivers a bold flavour with fruity undertones. Grab a bottle to go and swig directly from the collectible glass flask, or choose to enjoy the cool café interior and pour your cold brew over ice with cream and sugar.

Jamaica Blue Cold Brew

Vancouver, BC

Cold brew coffee has never been hotter, and now you can grab a refreshing bottle on the go courtesy of this popular mobile coffee dispensary. As the name would suggest, Jamaica Blue Coffee Co. specializes in strong concentrated cold brew made with arabica coffee beans grown in the Blue Mountains of Jamaica. The beans are roasted, brewed and bottled locally here in Vancouver. Premium bottles are available from the roaming coffee truck (check Twitter to find out their latest locale) and in grocery stores and specialty shops across the city.

Timbertrain Coffee Roasters Ltd

2
311 Cordova St W, Vancouver, BC V6B 1E5

Coffee snobs take note; this Gastown café boasts state-of-the-art brewing equipment that’s sure to get your pulse racing. Behind the bar you’ll spot talented baristas bouncing between the sleek La Marzocco Strada espresso machine, the laboratory-like pour-over station and customized cold brew taps. Global coffee varieties change seasonally and beans are roasted locally in Timbertrain’s warehouse in Langley. There are plenty of options when it comes to seasonal coffee treats: sample the cold brew on tap, try an iced latte or opt for a creamy affogato that sees a double shot of espresso topped with Birchwood Dairy ice cream.

Platform 7

3
2331 Hastings St E, Vancouver, BC V5L 1V6

Modelled after a Victorian-era London train station, this elegant coffee bar in East Van will charm you at first sight, and first sip. Cold brew coffee is serious business at Platform 7; visitors will find an array of chilled options prepared with beans from Portland’s Stumptown Coffee Roasters and served ceremoniously at the on-site brew bar. The menu includes made-in-house cold brew coffee, iced espresso-based drinks prepared on the La Marzocco Strada (imported from Florence), and handcrafted martini-style iced brew coffees. For a carbonated hit of caffeine, try an espresso mixed with bubbly tonic water.

The Elysian Room

4
1778 W 5th Ave, Vancouver, BC V6J 1P2

Cold brew coffee is totally buzz-worthy (in more ways than one) and Elysian is capitalizing on the trend. The popular roastery and café has installed specialized taps to dispense nitrogen-infused cold brew coffee year round in both caffeinated and decaf varieties. Alternatively, grab the namesake cold brew to go in a convenient take-away glass bottle. There are three Elysian locations across the city but we’re partial to the Mount Pleasant outpost. The industrial-chic café was designed with help from Janaki Larsen (of Le Marche St. George fame) and is flooded with natural light thanks to the floor to ceiling windows.

Matchstick Coffee

5
639 15th Ave E, Vancouver, BC V5T 2R6

The folks behind Matchstick Coffee Roasters are meticulous when it comes to selecting high quality, single-origin coffee beans from Guatamala, Kenya, Ethiopia and Honduras. Knowledgeable baristas prepare brewed-to-order iced coffees using a pour-over method that’s slow, methodical and fun to watch as long as you’re not in a hurry. We suggest accompanying your beverage with a double-baked croissant (try to get there early before these sweet treats sell out). Both the Chinatown location and the Mount Pleasant outpost are brightly lit, minimalist and totally Instagram-worthy. The neighbourhood hangouts also have plenty of and free Wi-Fi for laptop-toting freelancers.

Coo Coo Coffee

6
477 Davie St, Vancouver, BC V6B 2G2

This unassuming spot on Davie Street in Yaletown offers something a little different than the surrounding coffee chains. Neighbourhood locals love the selection of inventive breakfast sandwiches and the café’s outdoor patio that’s great for people watching and dog spotting. The drink menu features a number of unique specialty lattes with sweet, seasonally inspired flavours such as pumpkin and salted caramel. Vietnamese-style iced coffees are sweetened with condensed milk and are a delightful early morning indulgence. Can’t decide what to order? The always-friendly counter staff will be happy to steer you in the right direction.

Small Victory Bakery

7
1088 Homer St, Vancouver, BC V6B 2W9

You’ll smell it before you see it. This Yaletown café attracts a steady stream of customers thanks in part to the enticing scent of fresh-baked pastries down Homer Street. The interior features pale wood floors, white marble counters and gold accents throughout, creating a luxe-modern space that begs to be lingered in. Cold brew is prepared on site in the bakery’s backstage coffee lab. Beans from Seattle’s Slate Coffee Roasters are brewed for six hours before being strained into a concentrate and chilled. Served by the 8-oz. glass, this flavourful cold brew is best enjoyed straight up.

Bump N Grind Specialty Coffee

8
916 Commercial Dr, Vancouver, BC V5L 3W7

Bump and Grind’s coffee program rotates weekly and showcases some of our favourite Vancouver coffee roasters, including Matchstick, Timbertrain and 49th Parallel. Bottles of cold brew from Notch Coffee or a made-to-order affogato are both easy-drinking options on a hot day. If you’re really breaking a sweat, grab a can of carbonated cold brew from Fernwood Coffee Company. These bubbly made with single origin coffees and filtered ice water for a crisp, naturally sweet finish. You’ll find Bump and Grind locations on Commercial Drive and South Granville.

Kafka Coffee

9
2525 Main St, Vancouver, BC V5T 3E5

This eclectic neighbourhood haunt in Mount Pleasant also doubles as a community event venue and an exhibit space for local artists. The coffee program rotates through both old and new world beans that change with the season. Knowledgeable baristas are incredibly savvy when it comes to global coffee culture and can explain the difference between syphon and pour over brewing methods. Seasonal iced coffee options include classic cold brew, coffee tonic and a retro-inspired cold brew float with ice cream. For those looking for a sweet treat, the not-too-milky vanilla iced lattes are some of the best in the city.

Tourism Vancouver’s annual Dine Out Vancouver Festival is back this winter from January 19th to February 4th. The 17-day culinary festival will see some of the city’s hottest restaurants serving an array of mouth-watering prix-fixe menus. If you want to take your significant other for a special meal, plan a date night at one of these romantic eateries. [Photo courtesy of Boulevard/Leila Kwok]
Tourism Vancouver’s Dine Out Vancouver Festival is back this winter from January 19th to February 4th. The 17-day culinary event will see some of the city’s top restaurants serving mouth-watering prix-fixe menus for lunch and dinner. If you’re looking for a kid-approved spot with a casual atmosphere and plenty of choices for picky eaters, book a table at these family-friendly restaurants. [Photo courtesy of Bufala]
Tourism Vancouver’s annual Dine Out Vancouver Festival is back this winter from January 19th to February 4th. The 17-day culinary event provides foodies with a great opportunity to eat at Vancouver’s most acclaimed restaurants for less. If you want an upscale meal in an elegant setting, these high-end spots deliver a great bang for your buck. [Photo courtesy of YEW Seafood + Bar]
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