There are quite a few few, but currently iced Vietnamese/Thai drip coffee with a glug of condensed milk is right on top of that list. Just so that you know, aeons ago, nacho cheese chalupas from Taco Hell occupied a rather lofty position on that list. Needless to say, the palate has ever since evolved into a very sophisticated being and now recoils at the thought of anything "nacho". Anyways, I digress. I was talking about iced coffee.
This iced coffee is a thing of beauty, even though it comes in a plastic cup. The first few sips brings up the strong drip coffee that lies at the bottom of the cup. But as it sits around sweating little beads of condensate that glug of condensed milk slowly swirls to the bottom. The drink looks chocolate brown now and starts tasting heavenly. Creamy and sweet, but not cloyingly so. This dearies is the real deal, not the cold asphalt that Starbucks peddles as iced coffee. There is nothing quite like it on a hot sunny afternoon and the jolt of caffeine comes free.
"There is nothing much to it", says fellow Southeast Asian D. "Just buy a drip coffee maker, some Vietnamese coffee and a can of condensed milk". Nah! If I could make it myself everyday then it would become ordinary. If I could have it everyday, I would not cook up excuses to go to my favourite Thai grocery store, browse around and then explain how I want my iced coffee to Aunty...for the umpteenth time.
"No pearls, only milk aah! ".
I hate pearls, those black gooey tapoioca pearls/ bubbles that sink to the bottom of bubble tea. And the very idea of using a fat straw to suck the bubbles up.....ewww!
If I made it myself, I know it would taste awful because I could never get myself to dunk half a can of condensed milk into what is essentially half a cup of strong coffee over ice. I have seen Aunty do it and that's ok and that's why it's a guilty pleasure. And that is how it shall remain.