Sep 5, 2012

A Few Coffee-Inspired T-Shirts

Coffee Tees

I was browsing the t-shirts on Threadless the other day because I am one of the judges for the amazing Threadcakes competition. They have some fantastic designs out there, and while I’ve seen some foodie ones, I haven’t noticed too many coffee-inspired creations. I did a little searching and found out that there are a few out there!

This Coffee That’s Always Late shirt got a laugh from me. I just thought the design of some of your favorite coffee-shop drinks was very cute – and I liked how the artist tried to capture the makeup of a latte (espresso, milk and foam), too.

Coffee Tees

I also liked the art of the Veni Vidi Venti tee, which shows exactly what is under that coffee sleeve. Definitely a fun shirt, and I have a feeling that this is one you’ll get some comments on when you’re in line waiting for your drink next time.

The Drink Mee tee is self-explanatory. And I think that we’ve all felt this way at least a few times.

Of course, a tee might not be enough to get you started in the morning, but it just might help you get to the coffee shop with a little more style!

Sep 1, 2012

Starbucks Reserve Jamaica Blue Mountain, reviewed

Starbucks Reserve Jamaica Blue Mountain, reviewed

I was excited to hear that Starbucks was going to bring back the Jamaica Blue Mountain Reserve coffee this year. I had some last year, but this rare coffee ran out quickly… and that was also before my local Starbucks got a Clover machine. I’ve had Jamaica Blue Mountain (and JBM blends) before, and typically brew it at home, but it was nice to be able to get a cup hot from the clover and see what new flavors might be brought out.

The Starbucks JBM is a medium roast, medium bodied coffee. It has a hint of roasted peanut to it and a clear milk chocolate flavor, with some very creamy tones. There is some acidity to it, so this isn’t quite as smooth as you might think a coffee described as having a hint of “milk chocolate” to it might taste, however, and there is a hint of citrus that leaves you with a pretty clean, slightly earthy finish. This is a fun coffee and, while I will say it is not my favorite of the reserves, it has a lot of complexity to it that makes it very interesting to drink. The flavors in the coffee are slightly toned down by brewing it in a french press, instead of pulling it from the Clover (and it gets a bit mellower that way, as well). It’s also quite good iced – but only go that route if you have a clover to pull from for a very refreshing summer drink.

Aug 20, 2012

Spotted: Starbucks Mélange d’été

 Mélange d'été

Maybe I haven’t been paying close enough attention at my local stores, because I don’t remember spotting this summery Mélange d’été at any Starbucks stores near my house – and certainly not with french packaging. I snapped this picture on a recent trip to Montreal, where it seemed to be a popular choice for people looking for a lighter roast. The blend is made with the Blonde roasts, so although I didn’t get to taste it (they were brewing dark roasts at the time), I would put my money on this tasting a lot like Veranda and being a good choice for those who prefer going blonde. I really liked this packaging design – I wish they had had a summery mug in matching colors, as I definitely would have picked up one even without getting the coffee.

Aug 6, 2012

What is Turkish coffee?

Turkish Coffee

Turkish coffee is a favorite type of coffee among coffee lovers, but it is one of the less common ways to prepare coffee and you aren’t going to encounter it in your average coffee shop. Turkish coffee starts with ultra-finely ground coffee beans, which are boiled with water in a small pot until the mixture becomes foamy. It is then poured out into a small cup – grounds and all – and sugar or honey is added to taste. Some methods call for adding sugar to the grounds, but most cafes will allow you to add the sugar on your own after you order a cup. The grounds are allowed to settle to the bottom of the cup, while you sip the hot coffee off of the top.

Coffee made this way has an intense flavor and it becomes stronger as the coffee sits, as the grounds are still in the cup. The foamy head is a signature of turkish coffee, and while it can look similar to the crema on espresso, it is typically less creamy and much darker in flavor. It’s a great way to try coffee, especially if it is being prepared for you in a traditional pot, but drinking with the grounds in the cup takes a bit of practice or you’ll end up sipping some of the sandy grounds as you come below the halfway point.


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