February 21, 2011 | 8:00am
Remember when Starbucks' Frappuccinos were all the rage? Well, there's long been another version on the market, made by another company headquartered in Seattle called Seattle's Best
. And while we prefer to go with Starbucks for the hot coffee that we make at home, Seattle's Best might have the winning hand with their pre-made cold coffees.
We tried Seattle's Best Iced Latte, and found that it doesn't taste all that different from a Starbucks Vanilla Frappuccino. But it costs about 50 cents less, and considering the few ingredients in the Iced Latte, it packs a lot of flavor and punch.
Seattle's Best Iced Latte contains coffee, water, reduced-fat milk, sugar (23 grams), maltodextrin, pectin, and ascorbic acid. That's not a lot of ingredients (especially compared to an energy drink), but somehow, the java tastes robust, smooth, and very sweet. Surprisingly, there's only 130 calories in one 9.5 ounce can.
The amount of caffeine in the Iced Latte isn't listed on the can, and a web search turned up caffeine amounts for just about every Seattle's Best coffee except this one. The company's hot medium latte contains 150 mg of caffeine, so there's probably less than that in the Iced Latte. But even if it only contains 100 mg of caffeine, it still has more than an 8.2 ounce can of Red Bull (80 mg). And the energy boost is noticeable.
We woke up at 5 a.m. and cracked open a can. An ice cold beverage seems more rousing to us than a hot one (especially living in the Arizona desert), and Seattle's Best Iced Latte was so cold and tasty that we had to fight to keep ourselves from guzzling the whole can at once. We're glad we didn't, because half a can was enough to get us up and going.