As a staple in the diet of 64% of Americans, coffee has become an embedded part of our culture. It makes sense, then, that we have started experimenting with these little beans. New coffee trends emerge every year. Some stay, some go.
So, what have we seen from the coffee industry and are these trends here to stay?
Sustainability is one of the coffee trends that we hope never dies! I’ve already touched on how many people drink coffee, so it’s important that we find a way to reduce this impact on the planet.
During the 2018 London Coffee Festival, sustainability was one of the main focus points. This is something that extends to the US and across the world, too. We’re talking about sustainability in all aspects.
This starts with baristas and café owners. It’s important to think about how to reduce waste in packaging and coffee beans, as well as to find ways to recycle more.
You can help the issue as a coffee drinker, too. Find coffee that has a sustainable label, so you know you’re doing some good. This is usually grown using traditional methods, with minimal machines or pesticides. Find out how your coffee was grown and how it affects rainforests, wildlife and local communities.
Consumers care more about where their beans come from. This calls for more transparency in café menus with information about sourcing and origin of coffee beans.
As people are geeking out over coffee, they understand how growing and processing methods affect their coffee beverages.They want to know how unique their beans are, so the industry is making this information available.
In the same way, consumers are happy to pay more for gourmet coffee. If they know the quality way the beans were produced, a higher price tag is fine!
A cooler kind of coffee is here! Cold brew is one of the most popular coffee drinks, but it’s had a modern makeover recently. You may have heard of nitro coffee, but do you know what it is?
Nitro coffee (NCB) is a cold brew coffee that gets infused with nitrogen gas before you drink it. Sounds strange? I thought that too! But this technique gives the drink a unique flavor and mouthfeel that keeps people coming back for more.
I was asked how long has coffee been around with the nitrogen addition. Although this type of coffee was created in 2012, it’s still flying off the shelves. The idea is that it doesn’t fizz the coffee, but foams it. This makes your cup of joe more velvety, a little like the foam on a glass of beer.
Modern Americans drink coffee at any time of the day – or night! Millennials drive the trend of merging coffee with cocktails and are enjoying a caffeine hit at their favorite bars.
The iconic Espresso Martini was created in the 1980’s, but there have been many developments since. The popularity of coffee-based cocktails has launched a whole new culture. This trend is in its infancy, but we expect it to boom. Expect entire menus of different coffee drinks with alcohol.
You can make your own at home at show off to your friends! Some of the alcohol I think goes best with coffee includes rum, Kahlua, whiskey and hazelnut liquor.
Buttered coffee is crashing the scene because of new diet trends, such as the Keto diet. But why do people drink coffee with butter?
This is a way of adding healthy fats to your diet. By adding a little butter or coconut milk, you get an energy boost, without the crash later on. But don't get confused, this is not coconut coffee ! The butter helps to release caffeine more slowly. This is also a popular staple for those trying to lose weight.
Sounds strange, but tastes good and makes your cup all creamy! My tip? Add vanilla or mint and serve it on ice for and extra tasty treat. Remember that it’s important to think of moderation if following a diet!
Coffee consumption in the US is huge, and the American drinker consumes an average of 3.1 cups every day. The youth of our country follow in our footsteps and they want some coffee goodness too! In the US, 44% of coffee drinkers are millennials.
The growth in younger coffee drinkers has led to some changes in how we drink coffee. Many younger people don’t like the strength or bitterness that coffee can have. To help, there is an increase in sweeter drinks such as coffee-based milkshakes. This trend was led by big chains like Dunkin Donuts and is being followed worldwide.
But what about the really young people? The cute idea of the “babycino” was born in Australia. It is a caffeine-free, milky drink for babies and toddlers. So, when you take your little one for brunch, they can feel like one of the adults!
There’s a worldwide increasing concern about animal-based diets. More people are seeing the benefits that going vegan can have on the planet. For that reason, I noticed more people opting for non-dairy milk in their lattes, mochas and other coffee drinks.
Coffee shops and cafes are quick to latch onto this trend. More menus now have a greater diversity of options that appeal to both non-vegans and vegan coffee drinkers. We’re used to seeing alternatives such as soy, almond and lactose-free milk. However, expect even more options in this year and beyond. Things like cashew, coconut, rice and oat milk are set to become widely available.
Some varieties of milk won’t affect the taste of your coffee. Others give it a new flavor that you might learn to love!
I love the coffee industry’s ability to never get boring! While the art of coffee is old, it’s the coffee trends that keep us interested. I hope you’ve had the chance to try some of these modern trends, especially those around sustainability and the bean’s story! Which is your favorite and which trends do you expect to pop up next?