Coffee has been a staple for humans since perhaps well before the 15th century. Legends speak of goats eating berries from a tree and bouncing around all night, leading to the discovery of coffee beans and their many delights. Since the goats, or whatever other legend you’d like to believe, coffee has become a mainstay in cultures around the world. While some people bring a flower delivery with them to visit friends, others sit around a pot of coffee for hours at a time.
Coffee continues to change both in popularity and in use as we continue to learn more about the little roasted bean. As continued pushes for sustainable farming rises around the world, coffee growers are using less pesticides, working on providing better working conditions for farmers, and trying to protect land and forests. Join us as we go through some of the trends coffee has been experiencing lately.
If you’ve been drinking coffee for a while, you’ve surely heard about fair trade coffee, and maybe even bought the best espresso coffee beans that had a fair trade label on them. Fair trade is meant to allow a consumer to be able to track the coffee all the way back to the coffee plantation. Essentially, it’s a set of regulations to ensure that the people growing and harvesting the coffee beans are treated fairly, and that the environment is treated well in the process.
The new trend in fair trade is consumers wanting more than just a label, and actual proof that what they’re buying is truly fair. For some larger coffee houses, direct trade has become popular, which cuts out any middle man and makes sure that they know exactly where their beans are coming from. The next time you’re buying flowers online and groceries, take a look at your coffee purchases as well. Find out if there’s any information on the website about direct trade or the coffee farmers themselves.
Yes, we know, cold brew is nothing new. But it continues to reign supreme among many coffee drinkers, and is only growing. What is new about this trend is the impressive use of nitrogen in drinks. Many coffee shops are now creating nitro cold brew by using a beer pump to insert nitrogen. Some coffee shops are even adding alcohol to their nitro cold brew, which makes sense, considering how much it already looks like a cold stout or porter beer.
The age of non-dairy is well upon us, but we’re reaching further and deeper into the non-dairy world then ever before, and we’ll continue to do so for the next few years. Besides the usual vegans of the non-dairy world, we’re also seeing a massive increase in people interested in the higher sustainability of non-dairy milk alternatives. Studies have shown that cow’s milk uses almost three times the greenhouse gas emissions in comparison with many non-dairy alternatives.
Oat milk in particular has skyrocketed as of late and will continue to do so. Some of the reasons for its popularity include low water usage, low land use, and low emissions which overall means a low carbon footprint. Many dairy alternatives like almond milk and rice milk have either high water or land usage, which is still overall better than cow’s milk, but doesn’t stack up in comparison with soy and oat. Oat milk is also trending in cafes and coffee shops because of its hardiness and excellent steaming abilities. Oat milk stands up well to regular milk, and froths up well, making it a great option for baristas. Many people also say that oat milk tastes the closest to regular milk, especially in that yummy oat milk flat white.
We won’t be seeing matcha lattes being taken off coffee shop menus any time soon. In fact, look to see more alternative lattes hitting your local menu boards and Starbucks. While charcoal might be on its way out of both our skincare lines and our coffee cups, baristas are continuing to get creative in crafting a great latte. Turmeric lattes will also stand the test of time for many years, as it has already been around for over 4,000 years!
For those of you looking for alternative lattes to try at home, here’s an excellent list with recipes to try.
As we previously mentioned, many coffee shops are adding a smidge of alcohol to their coffee drinks to create a fantastic new flavour and texture. Nitro cold brew is perfectly mixed with a beer, and creamy espresso goes wonderfully with vodka. Some coffee shops are turning into an interesting mix of coffee and bar atmosphere, where you can still bring your laptop and have that cuppa, but also order a fun new espresso martini while you finish that work report. These places are filled with gift plants purchased online, comfortable chairs and good, solid tables for getting work done.
For some of the best new coffee cocktails out there, click here.
Gorgeous coffee colours
We’ve moved way past the normal latte art with little hearts and swans, and we’re now into fully artistic latte art. Colour is being added to the drink itself, like adding beetroot to the milk to create an adorable pink latte. Activated charcoal can create an eerie black latte, and turmeric has an iconic yellow vibrance to add some intense colour to your day.
An impressive use of colour and art is with butterfly pea flower tea, which Starbucks has jumped on and started creating drinks with. The impressiveness comes from its ability to almost change colour depending on what it is mixed with. Usually blue or purple, Starbucks and other Southeast Asian coffee and tea shops are starting to use it to layer colours in a single drink.
We recommend trying out at least a couple of these coffee trends and upping your coffee game to the next level!