A number of coffee loving nationalities, along with coffee snobs worldwide will let you believe that straight and black is the only way to consume this fashionable drink. All I can say is that they don’t know what they are missing out on. The vast possibilities for coffee drinkers today means there is a different taste and combination for every possible mood and occasion.
We should start with coffee blends. Far from sticking to one bean to produce a single flavor, blenders invent fantastic combinations that can be a real treat to the palate. In Indonesia, Sumatran and Papua New Guinean beans are combined to produce a distinctive, rich brew. Sumatran beans are also combined with Columbian to create a dark roast with a slightly smoky taste.
Introducing flavoring to your coffee can improve even the blandest of roasts. To sweeten a bitter or acidic brew try almond, vanilla or cherry flavoring. Certain syrups produce seasonal style coffees, such as gingerbread, ideal around thanksgiving and Christmas. Melting chocolate into your coffee to create mocha has become very popular and the type of chocolate and coffee chosen can make a huge difference to the overall effect. The Yemeni roast, combined with dark chocolate, makes a really exotic blend, while a lighter effect can be achieved with an American roast and a little milk chocolate. Combining coffee with cocoa beans before you make the drink is another popular method for those coffee lovers with a sweet tooth.
If an alcoholic addition to your coffee is your preference, there are a wide variety of spirits and liqueurs to be used either as an addition or an accompaniment to your drink. A good whiskey can be combined with black coffee and brown sugar, and topped with cream to produce the perfect Irish coffee. Creamy liqueurs such as Baileys and Amarillo can be added to sweeten your drink. The Italian grappa is a popular accompaniment to an espresso, and can be drunk separately or added to the brew itself. Rum, brandy and amaretto can each be added to various coffee blends to give a heady effect.
Some of the more adventurous types of coffees available include frozen cappuccinos, perfect to give you that caffeine lift on a hot day, Macadamia and chocolate flavoring that upsets the assumption that a nutty taste is coffee shows poor quality, and mint, raspberry or coconut coffees, that don’t taste much like coffee at all!
So with all the options to choose from, it is hard to see how the coffee snobs maintain their mantra that straight and black is the only way to go. Admittedly you will not be able to make many of these varieties with your one cup coffee makers, and they may not be available from the coffee machines in the office, but a little experimentation at home or in your local café can make coffee drinking a really pleasurable experience.