Friday, July 27, 2012

The Battle: Cream & Milk vs. Non-Dairy Creamer

Some people love their coffee just as it comes out of the pot – plain and black.  But many people add sugar or other sweeteners as well as milk, cream or non-dairy creamer to make coffee a more palatable and enjoyable beverage.

Which way is better?  Well, that’s a question that might never be answered.  (After all, we STILL don’t know if the chicken or the egg came first!) 
But what we can explore is non-dairy creamer and how it stacks up to its competition.
Where Did Non-Dairy Creamer Come From?
Let’s start by defining cream.  Plain and simple, it’s the layer of butterfat on top of raw milk.
Non-dairy creamers were developed in order to accommodate people who wanted cream in their coffee but were not able to consume milk for one reason or another (most commonly lactose intolerance and those following a Vegan lifestyle).
A product called “Pream” was among the first powdered creamers to be mass marketed.  Watch a Pream TVcommercial.  Despite the claims made in that commercial, Pream unfortunately did not dissolve very easily.  Made from sugar and dehydrated cream, the milk proteins made it difficult for it to dissolve.
Next came a product that we all know and many people love:  Coffee-Mate.  Around since 1958, Coffee-Mate dissolves much more easily than its predecessors due to alterations in the ingredients – a reduction of the milk protein and the addition of vegetable oil in place of milk fat.
Are Non-Dairy Creamers Truly Dairy-Free?
This is another loaded question, but the answer is…sometimes.
Many creamers marked non-dairy contain no lactose, but some do contain a milk protein called casein, which is added to enhance the flavor and texture of non-dairy creamer.  Casein can potentially cause a reaction in some people who are lactose intolerant, and others are specifically allergic to casein itself.  Also, the presence of casein means that some non-dairy creamers are not technically vegan. 
Always carefully read product labels and understand exactly what you’re buying.
Does Non-Dairy Creamer Last Forever?
Definitely not!  While non-dairy creamers (both liquid and powdered) do have longer shelf lives than milk or cream, they DO have expiration dates.  Again, be sure to carefully read the packaging for “best by” or “use by” dates.
Whether you love milk, cream, or non-dairy creamer, the good news is that there are loads and loads of options out there – from whole milk to skim, from regular cream to fat free half-and-half, from plain Coffee-Mate to Coffee-Mate Belgian Chocolate Toffee!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

How To Pronounce Various Coffee Regions & Coffee Varietals

Did you know that coffee has its own language? Okay, not really, but sometimes trying to pronounce coffee regions and a few of the less common coffee varietals can leave you feeling like you’re back in high school French class. Don’t be discouraged! is here to the rescue, providing you with a quick and easy tutorial.

Let’s start with Brazil - ah, Brazil. As Frank Sinatra put it, they’ve got an awful lot of coffee! With that being said, it’s no surprise that they are the largest coffee producer in the world. Learn how to say these coffee regions of Brazil:


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Sul de Minas
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Next, let’s travel to the birthplace of coffee - Ethiopia. There are two types of Ethiopian coffee: dry-processed or washed. Dry-processed will create a bold, earthy cup of coffee; washed will give you a light-bodied cup. Learn how to pronounce these coffee regions of Ethiopia:

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Sidamo Sidama
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Now let’s make our way over to Indonesia. Did you know that all (and we mean all) Arabica coffee in Indonesia is hand-picked, regardless of where it’s being grown? According to Wikipedia, Indonesia is also the fourth largest producer of coffee, making this job of hand-picking the coffee a big one. Think about that while learning how to say these coffee producing regions:

Gajah Aceh
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As your favorite infomercial would say - but wait, there’s more!  Learn how to pronounce these coffee regions:

Boquete (Panama)
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Huehuetenango (Guatemala)
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Nyeri (Kenya)
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Now that we’ve covered regions, let's learn how to pronounce varietals, or types of coffee.

Bourbon - Arabica coffee from RĂ©union, Rwanda and Latin America.
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Caturra - Arabica coffee from Latin and Central America.
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Catuai - Arabica coffee from Latin America.
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Pacas - Arabica coffee from Latin America.
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Now you can impress all your friends by correctly pronouncing the regions and varietals. You can also impress your friends with our variety of coffee products!

Coffee Quote by Julianna Marguiles

If we ever met Julianna Marguiles, we would tell her that there is no such thing as too much coffee!

Monday, July 16, 2012

T.S. Eliot Coffee Quote

"I have measured out my life with coffee spoons."

-T.S. Eliot

Just wanted to share our original artwork and this quote from T.S. Eliot!

Friday, July 13, 2012

Top 5 Reasons To Keep Drinking Your Coffee…Maybe!

Coffee is such a versatile beverage! Many people will attest to needing a cup first thing in the morning (in order to function) along with a few more cups to get through their day. Coffee can even be dessert-like and served as an after dinner treat! The question is: what does your doctor say about coffee? Here are 5 supposed health benefits that encourage you to keep drinking your coffee:

1.       Caffeine Linked to Lower Skin Cancer Risk: A new study published in the Cancer Research Journal earlier this month claims that drinking 3 or more cups of coffee a day can decrease your skin cancer chances by 20 percent! The study followed approximately 113,000 coffee drinkers to reach these findings, but they’re still inconclusive. Though the research on this claim continues, the results they’ve documented are promising.  

2.       Coffee May Help Slow Age-Related Muscle Deterioration: Coffee helps to wake our minds and bodies, but is it possible coffee may help maintain our muscles by slowing deterioration as we age? Tests performed on mice look promising enough that human testing may be in our future! By giving caffeine to mice of differing ages and measuring progress, sports scientists did find improvement over mice that were not given caffeine. We think they were probably pretty alert and productive, too.

3.       Coffee Lowers Depression Risk In Older Females: According to a report from the Harvard School of Public Health within the past year, analysis of over 50,000 women over a period of 24 years showed a decreased risk of depression. Analysts actually tried to predict who would have depression later in life by looking at a cumulative time period within the 24 year study! With a statistic of 1 out of every 5 women in the United States who suffer from depression, hearing that coffee may help lower the risk of depression is a wonderful thing. 

4.       Drinking Coffee May Help Prevent Alzheimer's Disease: Published early last month in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease, a study conducted by researchers of the University of Florida and the University of Miami shows that drinking coffee may help prevent/delay the onset of the Alzheimer’s disease. Researchers say that older adults who have mild memory impairment and drink coffee are less likely to develop dementia. With Alzheimer’s attacking an estimated 6 million Americans, the study raises hope for the fight against this incurable and deadly disease.

5.       Coffee Might Actually Help Your Heart: Researchers found that people who drank 2 cups of coffee a day had a lower risk of heart failure than those who did not drink coffee, but they emphasize that moderation is key. Analysis of data from 2001 to 2011 of over 140,000 people in Sweden and Finland yielded these findings, claiming that those who drank coffee were 11 percent less likely to have heart failure. Besides that, they also found that drinking coffee may also protect against other illnesses and even improve exercise performance!

What do you think – is caffeinated coffee really the super food it’s touted to be?

In the end, coffee and other caffeinated beverages in moderation may actually benefit you in the long run. There’s still more research to do, but we think these studies are on the right track. Who knows? Maybe coffee will get recognition for curing something other than sleepiness.