Sep 6, 2012

Homemade Coffee Popsicles

Homemade Coffee Ice Pops

The only thing more refreshing than a big cup of iced coffee on a hot summer day is a coffee popsicle – assuming, of course, that you’re looking to have something with a little caffeine in it as your refresher! These coffee popsicles are easy to make and are probably a little bit better than the popsicles that you got from the ice cream truck as a kid, since they are made with all natural ingredients.

The mix for the popsicles is made with strong coffee, milk, sugar and a touch of vanilla. The finished popsicle is a bit like a plain coffee ice blended drink – good coffee and cream flavors, and a hint of sweetness. You can make it with brewed coffee, espresso or even instant coffee dissolved in hot water, and can alter the ratio of coffee-to-milk to suit your tastes. I also find that foods don’t taste quite as sweet when they are frozen, so I always make this mix a little bit sweeter than I would if I were drinking it hot, and recommend that you do the same for the best results.

I have a variety of popsicle molds in my collection, but you can easily make your own popsicles without a mold by following this tutorial if you don’t have any but want to try these on a hot day!

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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.

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