I love coffee. Okay, a more accurate statement would be: I love sweet coffee drinks like flavored lattes and mochas. I never used to distinguish between the two, but I married a coffee snob (and one of my best friends is also a coffee snob). I know it’s probably all in my head, but I seem to be dependent on a sweet latte or mocha in order to be truly productive – whether it’s business/work or putting in a quality writing session (or revising for that matter). I also love Italian sodas. And I love coming up with my own drinks (lattes, mochas and Italian sodas). To do this one needs the right equipment and materials including all the gadgets to make said drinks (we have everything we need, well except for a real espresso machine – we have several coffeemakers, a Nespresso machine, a frother, and this thing that makes Italian sodas) and just the other day we finally stocked up on enough flavor syrups to start making the more simple go-to drinks.
See, I prefer Monin syrups to Davinci syrups (all coffee houses use syrups to make lattes and mochas and I’ve always seen them carry Monin or Davinci syrups), but they’re pretty hard to find. I could always have them shipped but because it’s glass bottles full of liquid, the shipping ends up being more than the bottle itself – no thank you. Hunting down local vendors I had already acquired the following syrups: Cherry, Lime, Pomegranate, Pumpkin Pie (I have a pumpkin problem that is year-round), and Raspberry – I used to have Caramel and Strawberry but sadly I ran out. A few days ago, I surprised my husband with a coffee roasting tour in Colorado Springs and the discovered that this place sold Monin syrups. And when I say they sold Monin syrups – I mean they had dozens of flavors to choose from!
So I walked out of there with eight – after being talked down from ten. The new syrup line-up includes: Caramel (that is always a MUST), Cherry (my husband’s favorite – now we have two), Dark Chocolate (blends better than actual chocolate when making mochas), Hazelnut, Lavender (have you ever had a lavender latte? If not, you’re missing out!), Maple Spice (why not?), Spiced Brown Sugar, and Watermelon (this one is strictly for Italian sodas). I’m still lacking five that I really want (Strawberry, Banana, Cooke Dough, Cinnamon and Irish Cream) and I have to do more research and try samples of a few flavors before I buy them (Rose and Violet). But with these new syrups I finally feel like I can actually make my own lattes regularly instead of going out (the Dark Chocolate, Caramel and Hazelnut will probably get the most use) while there are other flavors I’m really excited to try (Maple Spice and Spiced Brown Sugar).
It’s nice to be able to make my own drinks without having to go out to a coffee house. I mean don’t get me wrong, I’ll still be a frequent visitor, primarily because I love going there, taking out my hearing aids and just writing like crazy for five to six hours, but if I ever get a late start, or don’t feel like going out – I know I’m set. And it’s not bad for entertaining either!
I think if this works out (and once we get an honest-to-God espresso machine) I’m going to convert our bar in the basement into a coffee bar. We have a full kitchen in our basement with a nice bar separating it from the rest of the space down there. It’s perfect to put our syrups and coffee machinery on the far counter and make drinks (and pass them to our guests) on the bar (we’ll need stools too). I think it would be perfect. But I’m getting ahead of myself. First, I’ll have to try actually making a decent latte with the equipment we have and the new syrups we’ve procured. I really want to try the Maple Spice, but I think I’ll start off with something classic like a Hazelnut Mocha.
I’m really excited because this is the first time I have the flavors I want to really get crazy with and make my favorite drinks as well as experiment. If this is a success, I doubt I’ll have much trouble convincing my husband why I need the other syrups and having an actual space designated to coffee-drink making magic! 🙂
On my new blog dedicated to reviews, I wrote about the top five coffee destinations in Colorado – for real coffee lovers and sweet coffee-drink lovers alike. From down south in Colorado Springs to the Denver area to mountain town getaways like Estes Park and Evergreen – check out these places that all have their own kind of magic from karaoke to one-of-a-kind drinks to coffee tours or an expansive deck surrounding a beautiful lake in the mountains… Check them out! 😉