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C'est énorme! Get it while it's cold

It all started last summer. In the beginning, I thought it would be short-lived. But soon, what started out as a brief encounter to spice up the afternoon turned into a daily ritual that couldn't be missed. I found myself longing for the variety, dreaming of the smooth, cool texture. I didn't know how far I'd fallen until suddenly I found myself not being able to get through a day without it.  I had to come clean. 

And so here is the truth: I've been consistently cheating on my Starbucks skinny vanilla latte with Icebox Coffee for almost a year now, and I'm no longer ashamed to admit it.  It was hotter than usual that summer; what can I say? 

I still remember my Icebox virgin days as though they were yesterday. The steamy Nashville afternoons spent ordering even steamier caffeinated beverages from the baristas on West End. I'll never forget the day the "Skinny Vanilla Latte for Emily" turned into a snarky "One Vandy Girl." I'd never felt so anonymous and ubiquitous in my life. And God knows I'll never see that $50,000 again. I'd hit rock bottom.  

And then it happened.  

It was November when I met my husband. As a New Orleans native, he was aghast to hear about the torture I'd been putting myself through for at least a decade. Even more alarmed at the toll my addiction was taking on his wallet.  And that's when it all started.

"You've never heard of iced coffee? Who has never heard of iced coffee? What do you drink in the summer?"

I tried to get into it, but it just didn't do it for me. I resisted and stayed true to SVL for a while. 

And then I met Icebox. (Although it didn't go by Icebox at the time; friends convinced Cantata that a name change was necessary). A bold, super-smooth coffee concentrate that can be mixed with water or milk, served hot or cold, Icebox is the choice for coffee enthusiasts and novices alike who want to reinvent their coffee experience. It was perfect.   

Founded in 2012, Icebox Coffee is under the direction of Bebe Goodrich. A New Orleans native, Goodrich learned to appreciate a good cup of coffee at an early age. With her passion for quality coffee and entrepreneurial spirit, she teamed up with lifelong friend and self-professed foodie Richard Rodriguez to bring the best cold brew to the masses. Together they’re reinventing the coffee experience one cup at a time. (And, might I add, changing lives).  I type here before you now as an example of one of their success stories. 

I'm not saying I don't run into SVL every now and then, but for $1 a cup enjoyed out of my very own monogrammed tervis tumbler, Icebox empowers me not to feel so anonymous anymore. Not to mention, my husband now has the freedom to buy me a Valentine's gift this year with all the money he's saving.     

I'm a New Orleans Blend girl, but they make a decaf too. A well-balanced blend of chicory and Arabica coffee from South America, it will change your life. And the best part of it all, the beans are roasted right here in New Orleans.

So order your special someone the perfect Valentine's tribute. The Gift Set, which includes a 32 oz. bottle of coffee concentrate, four recipe cards, and milk frother packaged in a burlap bag with hand tied ribbon and gift tag, can be purchased here.  And perhaps the best part is a special low-rate delivery cost for those in the New Orleans area.  

So what are you waiting for?  Nothing says I love you like affordable caffeine.  

Emily Carrere writes this weekly column for NolaVie, bringing you fabulous finds that feature artists, designers, products and businesses in New Orleans.  Visit her daily blog Walnut Lane