Coffee is so much more than a hot beverage. We make meaningful social interactions and life milestones in the presence of cups of coffee. People fall in love, solidify business deals, and make new friends while sipping joe.
Similarly, coffee shops are more than just places to get your bean fix. They are a home away from home, a remote office, or a cozy corner where you can escape the world. You probably have a favorite local coffee shop that you run to whenever you need a cup of coffee and a place to interact with people.
While the occasions and circumstances change, your coffee drink itself probably has not. Espresso is an incredibly versatile drink that it can morph to match the dynamic interactions you have around it. Try some coffee cocktails for a night out with friends, impress a business client with a drink style from South America, or convert a coffee non-believer. There are thousands of ways people have imagined enjoying their shot of espresso.
If you want to be adventurous with your brews, here are five ways you can enjoy your espresso that you probably have not tried yet:
Also called a piccolo or a Gibraltar, this drink is equal parts espresso and warm milk. Cortado is popularly available throughout Spain, Portugal, and Cuba. Not to be mistaken for a cappuccino, a cortado is made with steamed milk. It doesn’t have the same frothiness, but it is creamy and cuts through even the strongest roasts.
The flat white is just as its name suggests. While you get a foamy, mushroomy-top with a cappuccino, this combination has a much smoother consistency. An experienced barista in your local coffee shop can steam your milk to just the right level to produce what is called microfoam. The espresso flavor is more pronounced in a flat white than its other coffee-and-milk cousins. Flat white gets its name from the thin layer of velvety smooth milk that sits atop your cup.
Espresso + Tonic
An espresso tonic is a refreshing coffee cocktail to enjoy on a hot day. It is made with one part espresso and three parts tonic water. The fun thing about this coffee is that you can add flavors to enhance it like lemon, lime, or ginger. You can experiment with the different mixtures depending on your espresso roast.
Nitro Cold Brew
The cold brew method suggests a complicated process of making coffee, but it is something you can easily make at home. You can follow this recipe to make a big batch, or you can order your favorite one from your local barista. Cold brews are made simply by combining coffee grounds with cold water and allowing the mixture to steep in your refrigerator for several hours or overnight. These are great coffee options for those who prefer lower acidity or less bitterness in their brew.
A staple for Cuban breakfasts, a cafe Cubano is a whipped espresso. The Cubano is prepared by combining sugar and brewed coffee and whipping it with a small whisk until a thick, foamy layer is formed at the top. You will need elbow grease to get the foam just right, but you can never beat too much. The sugar forms a delicious layer of crema that sweetens the espresso ever so slightly.
You may have the same reason for reaching for a cup of coffee every day, but you can keep things interesting by experimenting with these little-known brews. Perhaps the barista from your local coffee shop can whip up something original as well.
Are you in search of the best cold brew in Arizona? Our coffee shop uses locally sourced and handmade items from all over the state. Come by SIP Coffee and Beer for a hot cup of coffee and meet new people in your community.