What I’m Drinking – March 2020

We are all MORE than aware that shit is going down right now. And with that, I felt inspired to create the next post in our “What I’m Drinking” series. Most months this list is a mixture of “Early Bird” (coffee/non-alcoholic) drinks, and “Night Owl” (booze) options. We felt that given the current state of the world, and it being St. Patrick’s Day, we would just go ahead and dedicate the entirety (minus one) of March’s “What I’m Drinking” suggestions to alcohol. Bottoms up.

Topo Chico: We have been straight obsessed with Topo Chico, sparkling mineral water, for quite a while. Topo Chico has been sourced from and bottled in Monterrey, Mexico since 1895. It does come in flavors, like lime, but we like the original flavorless version best. Topo has become increasingly popular in the coffee world, I think it’s the best thing next to a shot of espresso or a one-and-one. I’ve had many people ask about the purpose of seltzer water served with coffee – it acts as a palate cleanser with your espresso. As you sit and sip, the flavor of the espresso changes, and cleansing your mouth with bubbly water between helps you detect taste changes.

Matcha Margaritas: A group of my creative friends got together recently (pre COVID) for a dinner party. As one would expect, I was assigned the drinks for the evening. With a menu consisting of enchiladas, guacamole, etc., I felt compelled to try my hand at a margarita. But I couldn’t simply show up with your standard marg; these creatives inspire me on a daily basis and I wanted to bring something fun, something… spicy.

My resources had me questioning how matcha might work in a margarita, and with a quick glance at Pinterest, I confirmed my suspicions. This recipe is delicious, but it’s more of a guideline, really. I’m a home bartender and, by no means, am I a professional when it comes to cocktails. 

Ingredients:

Sliced Jalapeno

Matcha Powder

Tequila

Agave Syrup 

Fresh Lime Juice

Instructions: In a jar or cocktail shaker, muddle sliced jalapeno with 2-3oz of fresh lime juice. Next, add matcha powder along with 3oz of distilled water and 2oz silver tequila, along with a splash of agave syrup. Shake, shake, shake! Strain over ice, garnish with lime, salt, and extra jalapeno slices. 

Lazy Bones Cabernet Franc: Back at Trader Joes, (maybe – this was a few weeks ago) we found one of our favorite inexpensive, red wines. Priced at only $6.99, this is an easy to drink Paso Robles red with a great peppery finish. What really got me was when I sat down to write about this wine for March (aka our COVID Drinking at Home Guide), this what I found on the back of the bottle: 

“I don’t care if you call me Lazy Bones, I love to lounge away the day alone. Why mix with others when being myself is so beautiful? When the day’s at my pace, I can relish small pleasures like ripe cherries, spiced blackberries, the aroma of sweet wood and fresh herbs. After all, there’s no shame in putting off for today what can truly wait ‘til tomorrow.”

“The best part about wasting the whole day is that it’s wholly yours to waste.”

Guinness Irish Stout: And if we didn’t have enough reasons to want to drink right now, happy St. Patty’s day! As the long-standing tradition goes, we will be drinking Guinness this evening. Maybe a fun fact you didn’t know, Guinness patented the widget, an ingenious nitrogen filled capsule that surges with bubbles when the ring pull is opened – replicating the draught experience in a can.


Thanks for hanging with us through uncertain times.

Cheers! xoxo – a Couple of Coffees

What I’m Drinking – December 2019

Early Bird

Black coffee: As always, we have been starting those early mornings out with hot, black coffee. To change it up a bit, we have been trying different brewing methods & beans. Read on!

MiiR Pourigami: We have been big fans of MiiR for a while, not just because of their awesome products, because of their “why”. Bryan Papé’s story of choosing philanthropy over wealth captured our initial attention and drew us towards MiiR (read more about Bryan here.) This year we participated in their Kickstarter campaign for the MiiR Pourigami. We immediately fell in love. It’s minimal design allows for easy travel, yet still allows for the ability to brew a quite tasteful pour over. Recommendation for brewing: 25g of course ground Peixoto Familia along with 300g of high quality H2O… fantástico!

Vinci Housewares Auto Pour Over: Vinci Housewares made a simple, yet ingenious change to the classic at-home coffee brewer. By redesigning the dispersion shower, Vinci was able to mimic the human motion of a tradition pour over by creating a rotating water spout/sprayer instead of the classic shower type. The more evenly water distribution leads to full extraction of the grind, thus resulting in a pot filled with more flavor and aroma. We are still tinkering with our preferred grind setting and measurements, but so far so good! 

PS. Sure, we can all agree that just about any coffee hand-crafted will win over a machine, but being able to set a timer the night before and wake up to coffee is what we at ‘a couple of coffees’ appreciate (being able to sleep in those extra 10-15 mins comes in clutch, A LOT). 

Peixoto Blends: Boas Festas, the Peixoto holiday blend, is rich, full, and velvety. In contrast, the Café Rosé is the first Semi-Carbonic Macerated coffee from the Peixoto family farm. The vibrant fruit notes in Café Rosé remind us of sangria, it is very light and refreshing.

Lab Notes: Our farmers market neighbor, Lab Notes Coffee, roasts some fun coffee. Luke, owner/roaster, is super awesome & shared a few blends with us this season. The other morning we were thankful to be treated to the ‘Ethiopia Kochore Jet Hama’ brewed in the Vinci. The coffee lived up to its described flavor profile of “clean, lavender, and complex” and was definitely the start to our morning we were looking for.

OSC: As we’ve affectionately dubbed it, the “OSC” (oat milk Spiced Honey chai latte), is so ridiculously good, it appears on our Early Bird PHX menu pretty much every week now. Local Iconic Cocktail Co. makes a delicious Spiced Honey, intended for alcoholic beverages, but we think it’s meant to be with chai; with Oregon chai tea and Minor Figures oat milk, this drink feels warm and comfy, like everything is going to be alright.

Night Owl

Firestone Walker 805: My (Michela’s) go-to beer lately. A light, refreshing blonde ale created for the laid back California lifestyle. Subtle malt sweetness is balanced by a touch of hops. Goes down easy (maybe too easy). 

G&T: Hendrick’s Gin with tonic & lime is a total favorite around the holidays. We aren’t ones to judge, but if you find yourself catching vast amounts of side-eye from friends and family for drinking gin and tonic at 9 am Christmas morning, you may need to reevaluate – better make it a gin and grapefruit juice. 😁

Honorable Mention: The Miller Lite holiday packaging deserves props. Besides, Dave has a matching ugly sweater. 

Happy holidays – cheers! xoxo a Couple of Coffees

What I’m Drinking – October 2019

Early Bird PHX

Cold Brew: This summer, I craved something more than my regular hot, black coffee. When the Phoenix heat is steadily above 105, it’s tough to resist an icy cold brew, and it’s damn near impossible to turn down nitro cold brew on tap. And even though it’s October and it’s not so hot anymore, I’ve still been indulging in my “summer drink:” cold brew with cream, definitely nitro when available.


We have a creamery here in AZ called Danzeisen Dairy. They’ve been making fantastic milk products as well as lemonade and orange juice just 10 miles from Phoenix for over 50 years. (They even bottle in beautiful glass bottles just like the old days!) One of my favorite things they make is their naturally flavored root beer milk that tastes JUST LIKE the end of a root beer float. Dropping a bit of that into cold brew coffee was a popular treat on hot summer afternoons at the Early Bird PHX. It’s just as irresistible whenever you’re craving a float — triple-digit weather or not.


The Cactus Wren: If I wasn’t obsessed with Danzeisen enough, let me tell you about their lemonade and orange juice, which I consume daily. One of my all-time favorite beverages is an Arnold Palmer, absolutely delicious when made with this local lemonade. To switch it up a bit, I’ve been pairing the lemonade with a tropical herbal tea from Maya Tea Company, out of Tucson, AZ, and then decided to get wild adding a splash of O.J. The citrus adds a refreshing finish that makes this classic drink even more tempting.


Night Owl PHX

Spotted Cow (New Glarus Brewing, WI) – It’s no secret that Wisconsin produces good beer, and one great example is Spotted Cow. People can’t stop talking about how much they love this beer. Spotted Cow is a “farmhouse ale that is prized and praised by Wisconsinites. It’s a local phenomenon with more than 12 million pints consumed annually.” Basically, it’s tasty as f*ck, but sadly, it is not distributed out to AZ. David, originally from Milwaukee, visited family this summer and got to drink a *few* Spotted Cows. Luckily for both of us, he also packed a couple of six-packs to bring home for sharing. Moral of the story, if you’re ever somewhere that carries Spotted Cow, give it a try, you won’t be disappointed.


Grifone Sangiovese 2016 (Trader Joe’s) – Who doesn’t love scoring a good, cheap wine at the grocery store? Trader Joe’s is a weekly stop of ours, and we love the selection of wine they offer! From $3 to $30+ bottles, there is a wide range of varieties and prices to choose from. Grifone starts with not-too-sweet berry notes, subtle pepper and spice; it seems to pair with just about any meal. It tastes like a classic Italian red, and if you’d prefer to drink it without food, it’s smooth enough to do so. Best part? It costs $4. Winner winner, wine with dinner.