NEW YORK — Your coffee preferences reveal more about your personality than you think. A new survey shows that people who favor iced coffee are more likely to jam out to performers like Megan Thee Stallion, be introverted, and travel more than people who prefer hot coffee.
A study of 2,000 coffee-drinking Americans compared the lifestyles of hot coffee drinkers and cold coffee drinkers. Researchers find that, on average, those who prefer cold brew and iced coffees are more likely to prefer sunny weather (40%), binge-watch science-fiction shows (37%), and are more likely to be part of Generation Z (40%).
Meanwhile, hot coffee drinkers are more likely to be extroverts (40%), prefer overcast weather (36%), enjoy comedy shows (33%), listen to artists like Taylor Swift (24%), and be a baby boomer. In fact, 94 percent of people over the age of 56 prefer a hot mug of joe.
Even your zodiac sign can reveal your coffee preferences. If you are a fire or earth sign, you’re likely to lean more towards hot coffee than cold (49% vs. 44%). Meanwhile, water and air signs are more partial to iced coffee (57% vs. 51%).
Commissioned by Califia Farms and conducted by OnePoll, the survey also finds that despite hot and iced coffee personality differences, coffee drinkers universally agree it’s near impossible to go without it in the mornings. Coffee drinkers would rather give up social media (22%), television (18%), alcohol (16%), and video games (4%) than coffee.
Is no milk a deal-breaker?
There is a line many refuse to cross, however. Whether it’s oat milk, almond milk, soy milk, hemp milk, or regular dairy, one in four coffee drinkers would rather go without their cup of joe altogether if their preferred milk isn’t available.
Plant-based milks are now a must-have for nearly four in 10 (38%) iced coffee drinkers. On the other hand, nearly as many (37%) hot coffee drinkers prefer old-school heavy cream. Top among these plant-based milks are almond milk (39%) and oat milk (34%).
When asked why they prefer plant-based milks, respondents said they enjoy the flavor (32%), functional ingredients (21%), and low sugar content (15%).
“We’ve seen an interesting shift in coffee consumption in recent months, with 42 percent of consumers experimenting at home and trying to recreate their favorite hot and iced coffee beverages,” says Suzanne Ginestro, chief marketing officer at Califia Farms, in a statement. “We’ve found that just as many people are interested in adding plant-based milks to their coffee due to the appealing flavors, functional ingredients, and a generally lower sugar profile.”
Recreating coffee magic during a pandemic
Overall, a majority of respondents (59%) say the pandemic has disrupted their coffee habits in a way they didn’t expect. This change hasn’t been all bad for their coffee habits. Nearly half (46%) of American coffee-drinkers have tried different types of coffee at home since they haven’t been able to visit their favorite coffee shops.
Forty-two percent have even tried to recreate their go-to coffee orders at home. One in three have tried their hand at latte art and one in four have hopped onto the Dalgona coffee trend during their time in lockdown.
While the pandemic is keeping most people at home, cold coffee drinkers may be more likely to experience cabin fever than their hot coffee counterparts. Pre-pandemic, cold coffee drinkers said they would travel three times per year, versus two times a year for their hot java peers. Cold coffee drinkers are also more inclined to spend their time browsing Instagram (27%) while hot coffee drinkers are more active on Facebook (35%).
The study reveals having a preferred temperature of coffee can even affect one’s taste buds. Eight in 10 cold coffee drinkers prefer sweeter, fancier drinks featuring flavored syrups. Two-thirds (67%) of hot coffee drinkers, however, would rather have a simple cup with cream, sugar, or both.
When asked about their go-to coffee orders, respondents waxed poetic about their favorite lattes, black Americanos, and new twists on old classics, like adding sea salt to a cappuccino for a savory, blooming flavor with less bitterness.