I’ve decided to start a new trend on my blog. While I adore writing book reviews, I also feel like it’s hard for you guys to get to know me better. You can tell a lot from someone about the books they read, but not as much as I want you to know. So, I’ve decided that every third post on my blog is going to be a Musings post – it’ll be a post on my personal thoughts and preferences, experiences and stories.
And for my first Musings post, after being asked for by a few different people, I thought I’d share with you some of my favorite warm drinks!
I have been a coffee drinker for as long as I can remember. At first, my parents (rightly) didn’t let me have it; my mom just let me have sips of her drinks here and there. But when I finally reached the wonderful age where they allowed me to have it, I turned into, well, a bit of a coffee snob.
My mom worked at a coffee shop when I was young, so she taught me the right way to make a cup of coffee. Along came the do-dads: flavored syrups (which I didn’t care for very much since they were so sweet), creamers (that my dad called “liquid dessert”), the milk frother, the homemade whipped cream maker… I learned how to use them all.
And then I realized Starbucks was a thing. A beautiful, heavenly thing.
Between the knowledge my mom gave me, as well as experimenting with different coffee creamers at home, as well as with different Starbucks drinks, I grew to have an extremely acquired taste for coffee. Hence, the coffee snobbery that I’m about to unleash upon you all. You’ve been warned.
My favorite coffee drinks from Starbucks:
~ The Cafe Mocha
~ The Ultra Caramel Frappe
~ The Gingerbread Latte
~ The Iced Caramel Macchiato
If you’ve ever tried any of these drinks from Starbucks, you’ll realize that my acquired taste is actually pretty bitter. The sweetest drink on that list is the Ultra Caramel Frappe.
I used to love, love, love super sweet drinks – whether made at home, or from Starbucks. However, once I discovered the Cafe Mocha and started devouring it every time I went to Starbucks, I realized that sweet drinks weren’t for me anymore. My mom and one of my younger sisters love their drinks sweet, and they often want me to taste test them. Whenever I do, the sweetness actually makes me stomach turn.
I tell them it’s too sweet. They call me crazy. Ah, to be in a family of coffee snobs. 😉
Before I move on to make-at-home coffee drinks, I’d like to go ahead and give you an idea of what each of my favorite Starbucks drinks taste like in case you’re unsure whether they’re for you or not.
The Cafe Mocha has an incredibly rich and bitter chocolate taste. You can hardly taste the coffee over the chocolate. Imagine the richness, the familiarity, of homemade hot chocolate – then add coffee to it. This is why it’s one of my favorite drinks.
The Ultra Caramel Frappe is sweet, cold, and, obviously, extremely caramel-y. The whipped cream on it is one of the best parts – always ask for extra. This is a highly addictive drink that always makes me feel super caffeinated and like I can get things done. Perfect drink for summer, or for those still-really-warm fall days.
The Gingerbread Latte is a seasonal Christmas drink, which is very, very sad since it is one of my favorites. It’s served to you so hot that the whipped cream is a mere foam on top of the drink, and it melts on your tongue with nearly every sip. Definitely ask for extra whipped cream on this one too. This drink, if I remember correctly, isn’t as bitter as the Cafe Mocha. I feel like it’s a good mix between bitter and sweet. Also, it normally comes in a red or decorated cup, and that’s the best.
The Iced Caramel Macchiato feels like a spring/summer drink to me. It is one of the most aesthetic drinks ever. However, it is also probably the most bitter drink on my favorites list. It comes with caramel on the bottom and the coffee and milk separated in the cup. Always, always, always stir this mixture together, lest you’ll be wondering why the heck you ordered something like this. Once mixed, it has a very strong, bitter coffee flavor, followed by the sweetness of the caramel.
Make-at-home drinks are harder, because it depends on the coffee and coffee creamers you have, as well as your individual taste. I have a cute little turquoise Keurig, so I use mostly coffee pods in it. I tend to go with a medium roast, and I don’t do decaf (though I know that isn’t for everyone). If I want to use coffee grounds, I use the best that I’ve ever tasted. It comes from Hill’s Shoe Store in Cana, VA. Very bitter, strong flavor, and the smell is almost as amazing at the coffee itself. There are also pumpkin spice coffee grounds; disclaimer – I haven’t had it in ages, but if I can find it, I definitely plan on buying a crap ton of it. It is one of my favorite flavors of coffee.
However, while I can list out my favorite types of coffee grounds, to each his own. I feel like what may be more interesting and helpful for you would be my favorite coffee creamer flavors. And here they are…
~Chocolate Chip Cookies
I am incredibly picky when it comes to coffee creamers. I hate anything with peppermint and chocolate together (sorry, mom!), and often times some of the creamer flavors they put out in the grocery store are just weird. I’ve tried multiple, but these are the three I think I’ll continue to fall back on.
Pumpkin Spice and Cinnamon Vanilla provide the perfect autumn flavor, though I do think Cinnamon Vanilla will make an excellent winter flavor as well. Chocolate Chip Cookies are honestly just perfect for anytime around – if you can find it, that is. I haven’t seen it for awhile, so I’m hoping they’ll bring it back with the Christmas season approaching.
But if all of these drinks sound way too fancy for you, I have one more little make-at-home number that you may like. Heavy whipping cream and two small spoonfuls of brown sugar, and you have a slightly bitter/slightly sweet, super creamy cup of joe.
Thanks for letting me share my coffee snobbery with you, friends! Do you have a favorite coffee drink?