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Indian chai is a centuries-old blend of hot, delicately sweet, milky black tea spiced with cardamom, ginger, and black pepper. Now a modern coffeeshop staple, the drink is less attuned to tradition and can be enjoyed warm or cold. Refresh with an iced (or blended) version at the following spots.
In order, from spicy to sweet.
Rooster & Moon Coffee Pub
The Honey Badger is a power boost and a pick-me-up. This smoothie blends a banana and a spoonful of plain yogurt with ginger-spiced Bhakti Chai and a dollop of honey. Plus: Thanks to the banana’s potassium and fiber, you can call the drink a meal in itself. 955 Bannock St., #100, 303-993-2622, roosterandmoon.com
Lucile’s Creole Café
At Lucile’s, the house-made chai is a fusion of nutmeg, cinnamon, and vanilla in a potent black tea base. Add your choice of whole or soy milks and taste a nutty, earthy treat rounded out with warming spices. Tip: Avoid the weekend’s never-ending wait for brunch and place an order to go. Multiple locations, luciles.com
Cascades Restaurant andWhiskey Bar
For Wayne’s Spicebox Chai, bartender Grace Gaubatz mixes Tazo chai tea latte concentrate with Spicebox Canadian Spiced Whiskey, steamed milk, sugar, and a splash of Red Stag Bourbon. Sip: Enjoy it—and the view—on the veranda. 333 Wonderview Ave., Estes Park, 970-577-4001, stanleyhotel.com
Sweet Action Ice Cream
Nab a scoop of the vegan chai when it’s rotated into Sweet Action’s merry-go-round of flavors. This smooth blend of Third Street chai and soy milk offers a delightful coconut aftertaste. Get a pint: When the popular flavor shows up on the shop’s Twitter or Facebook feed, call in a pickup order. 52 Broadway, 303-282-4645, sweetactionicecream.com