It seems like only yesterday that asking for sweetener at your local boutique coffee shop was considered a criminal offense. (You can't mask the nuances of the single-origin brew!) Well, now there's an early crop of third-wave coffee shops and roasters, the ones that treat coffee beans like an artisanal product, that are now beginning to expand into the world of specialty coffee drinks.
"As an industry, we spent a lot of time teaching consumers how amazing and complex coffee can be," says Andy Mullins, lead barista at Nobletree Coffee in Red Hook, Brooklyn. "Now we're interested in what we can do with coffee as an ingredient, working with other complex flavors to elevate the whole experience. We're always thinking of new and exciting things do with coffee."
But this doesn't mean Nobletree isn't serious about its roasts. In fact, it owns and operates two coffee farms in Brazil, is in the process of finishing a tasting room for their Red Hook roastery, and is opening a coffee shop in New York City's One World Trade later this summer. Interesting coffee concoctions—created around the flavors of their beans—will be part of the whole Nobletree experience.
When we asked Mullins to design three cold brew recipes we could make at home, he already had a few ideas in development: the "Café Limonada," a twist on the Arnold Palmer; "El Sombreroni," a Negroni-inspired coffee drink; and a sweet "Brazilian Butterscotch" cold brew.
Continue on for all the cold brew upgrades you'll need this summer!
3 ounces cold brew
¾ ounce juniper simple syrup
1 ounce tonic water
Maraschino cherries, for garnish
- Combine cold brew and juniper syrup with ice in mixing glass and stir for 30 seconds.
- Strain over ice in old-fashioned glass and top with tonic water.
- Garnish with cherries.
Make juniper syrup by grinding ¾ ounce juniper berries in a spice grinder. Gently simmer in 1 cup water for 15 minutes. Add 1 cup raw sugar and stir until sugar dissolves. Let syrup cool before straining.
4 ounces cold brew
2 ounces lemonade
- Combine cold brew and lemonade over ice. Stir and garnish with lemon slices.
Make lemonade by stirring together 1 cup fresh lemon juice, 3 cups cold water, ½ cup sugar, and a pinch of salt.
4 ounces cold brew1 ounce Brazilian butterscotch sauce1 ounce whole milk
- Combine ingredients in shaker with ice.
- Shake gently for 5-10 seconds. Pour in highball glass over ice.
Make Brazilian Butterscotch sauce by simmering ¾ cup raw sugar, ¼ cup maple syrup, ⅓ cup heavy cream, 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, ¼ cup water, and a pinch of sea salt for 10 minutes. Add 2 tablespoons cachaça or bourbon and simmer for 3-5 minutes more. Cool and refrigerate for up to 3 weeks.