I Tried Ready-made Cold Brew and Didn’t Hate It

After a recent trip, this member of the Victor Crew wanted to drink cold brew coffee but wasn’t able to make any.

The first one was at a restaurant in Portland, Oregon. One of the more popular brands of coffee in Portland is Stumptown. It is not inexpensive. The 10 oz bottle of cold brew cost $4.50, but it was very good. Given a glass and half and half, I was able to make it tasty.

The other time I bought cold brew was from a Dunkin’ Donuts and had them add half and half. It wasnt as tasty as the more expensive one but it was pretty good as well.

The only other time I tried ready-made cold brew was from a Starbucks. It was actually too strong for me and they left no room to add a lightener.

Starbucks leaving straws behind

If you love Starbucks iced coffee and cold drinks, you won’t be able to drink it using a straw by the year 2020. They announced they will be doing away with straws and going to recyclable strawless lid. They have already made the move in more than 8,000 stores in the U.S. and Canada and will move to the others (over 28,000 globally) by the year 2020. Additionally they will begin offering straws made of alternative recyclable materials such as paper or compostable plastic for their Frappuccino® beverages by request.

They hope to be the leaders of the trend to focus on sustainability for other companies to follow and stem the ocean plastic. Cold beverages now account for over 50% of Starbucks beverages so straw usage has been climbing.

Other trends they have followed for sustainability include ethically-sourced coffee at 99%; charging 5p per paper cup in the London to promote reusability; discounting customers who bring a reusable cup or tumber to company-owned stores to name a few.

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Vegan Coffee Drinks

For the many people that follow Vegan or Paleo diets, Starbucks now has coffee drinks for you. The Starbucks Doubleshot® Coffee Smoothie. It comes in Dark Chocolate and Vanilla Honey flavors. They are made with almond milk. They have been available since May.

Later this year, bottled Frappuccino® chilled coffee drink will be available as well. It is made with almond milk and will come in Vanilla and Mocha flavors.

They will also have single-serve Cold Brew coffee in Vanilla & Fig flavor and Sweetened Black.

Starbucks also has White Chocolate Mocha Latte available at grocery stores that carry Starbucks coffee products.

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Coffee in Philly

It’s hard to have a blog about coffee and not notice the problems that arose in Philadelphia, PA this past week. For those who may not know, two black men went into a Starbucks Coffee shop for a real estate business meeting. They walked in and sat at a table. One of them asked to use the rest room and was told they were for paying customers only. They were waiting for a third person to show up so they hadn’t bought anything yet.

The store manager called 911 and police came and handcuffed them and escorted them out. The third person they were waiting for came in as they were being led out.

As a result of this, all (over 8,000) Starbucks Coffee shops will close on May 29 for racial bias training. The CEO met with officials in Philadelphia and Starbucks along with these 2 men will be working together for solutions.

Of course, on top of this is fake news that Starbucks is offering coupons for free coffee for those of color. This can be ignored.

Cold Brew when traveling

It seems everywhere you look these days, more and more shops are offering cold brew. We have had several posts about how to make it. What if you don’t have time or are traveling? What then? Here are some ideas.

If you are staying at someone’s house and if they have the room, you can get cold brew coffee packs from Dunkin’ Donuts. It looks like this is a more concentrated coffee as they have you add water after brewing it.

Stumptown Roasters has taken their cold brew a little further and make a Sparkling Cold Brew. It comes in a few different flavors: Original, Ginger Citrus, Honey Lemon. If you order online, it will cost $20 for a 6-pack sampler of all the flavors or $40 for a 12 pack of any one flavor. The cans are 12 oz each.

If you are traveling, you can find cold brew in just about any major coffee shop like Starbucks, Dunkin’ Donuts, Stumptown, etc.