Coffee Abroad; Circa Coffee and Antiques Signature Frappe

Coffee Abroad; Circa Coffee and Antiques Signature Frappe

Hey there, everyone! I actually have some coffee content for you today and piping hot… errrrr cold. You know those pieces of shortbread heaven called Biscoff? Do you like it? If so, have I got the thing for you! We made a trip to Tyrone, Georgia on a whim and found Circa Coffee , an adorable little place by any standards and just the kind of aesthetic I absolutely die for. I’ll stick a gallery down below so you can enjoy it with me!

Anyway moving on to the main attraction, the thing they are known for is the Biscoff Frappe. When they said it, for some reason I heard Biscotti and almost dismissed it. I’m literally so glad that I thought to doubt my own hearing and ask them to repeat it. They had, in fact, said Biscoff and not Biscotti. Icy? Check. Cookies? Check. Yum??? Let’s see.

I ordered my treat and some pound cake, which has affectionately been dubbed ‘Crack Cake’ by the locals. I sadly did not get to enjoy the cake because I promptly lost it. Not to worry, guys, I will most assuredly be returning to make quick work of the cake. What I did get to enjoy was the Biscoff Frappe. There may have been an error in my judgment upon getting the largest one, because it’s quite the rich drink as one would expect from the namesake.

It does legitimately taste like they threw a whole pack of the heaven in a blender, ice and milk of some sort and just sort of called it a day. It’s fantastic. Whereas most ‘cookie butter’ sort of drinks fall flat for me, this one was the first one to live up to the name. No overpoweringly bitter undertones and just pure cookie bliss in every sip. If you guys find yourself, I highly recommend it. 

The only thing I will say as a warning, is to be wiser than me. Get the smaller one, there’s no way you can make it the whole way through. I made it only halfway through and ended up wasting the rest because it wouldn’t fit. Circa, thank you for making an absolutely amazing drink and that in mind, I can think of no better rating than

Taste; Biscoff rating 5/5/5

Is it any wonder why this amazing gift to mankind deserves a 5/5? This is another one that I will wholeheartedly recommend to those of you who don’t enjoy coffee. I will be back, most definitely!

 

Hometown cravings: The Three Big Yums

Hey guys! I know I missed a couple posts- honestly, I’m not in a good headspace. I’m hoping things get better soon, but no improvement yet. I don’t want to bore you guys with my mental health woes, partially because I don’t want to wallow in my self-pity here, but also because I want to show you the three Frappes that are now at Starbucks. One of which, is returning, the other two are new if I’m not mistaken.

The first one they have is the Caramel Ribbon Crunch Frappuccino, it is delectable. Starbucks, please keep this! The first thing to hit is the scent of caramel and toffee on top of the marshmallow whipped cream. I did notice that first sip is almost aggressively sweet and rich, which is fine. It’s very caramel, so not for those of you who are more casual partakers of caramel.

This was the first one I tried, and I was hooked. I’m not going to let it replace my Macchiato due to caloric content, but it’s definitely up there with my favorite frappes. Some sips have. It does little bit of a bitter tinge, maybe it’s more nutty? It adds a great contrast to the sweetness.

I wasn’t sure which one to do next, but I ended up going with the Mocha Cookie Crumble Frappuccino. The first sip was following the caramel one with aggression. It’s a more rich, almost dark chocolate flavor. Like a frozen hot chocolate. I’d recommend this one if you’re a fan of really chocolatey flavors. How many ways can I find to say that I really enjoyed this one too? How many things can you say about a drink that amounts to a mocha with cookies in it? Guys, if you want chocolate, drink this. It will obliterate your craving.

The last one is the one that is making a temporary return. The Starbucks S’mores Frappuccino. This came to me topped sky-high with marshmallow whipped cream covered in graham crackers. This is the first time I’m able to taste the whipped cream unfettered by other flavors, and oh my god. It tastes so nostalgic to me for some reason. It reminds me of Halloween.Or, is it the little Santas you get that are marshmallows covered in chocolate? Maybe it tastes like Easter? My point is, it’s really, really good.

When I finally got around to sipping the actual drink I found it to be likewise pretty good. By this time the sugar high is starting to hit me, because I have all three of these sitting in front of me, so I’ll try to focus. It tastes primarily like the Marshmallow whipped cream, but also vaguely like honey. It’s exceptionally rich, and I think I prefer it to the chocolate one.

Which is Your Favorite?

Caramel Ribbon Crunch Frappuccino
Mocha Cookie Crumble Frappuccino
S’mores Frappuccino
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

Hometown Cravings: This Lemonade is Kicking at Midtown Coffee!

Hometown Cravings: This Lemonade is Kicking at Midtown Coffee!

      Hey guys! Guess what season it is officially? Summer. My least favorite season of all time. I only assume that this is officially Summer because it’s hot as all get out and wouldn’t you know my AC is on the fritz. With all of this hot hot heat, I needed something to help me cool down. And maybe coffee is that thing!

        I’ve been on a super nostalgic kick, I guess I’m longing for simpler times. I had this extensive soundtrack the year I graduated high school in the grand old days of 2010. I want to share a little of my soundtrack, because it’s on my mind. I’ve been suddenly obsessed with a lot of songs, most likely because I feel lost and I want to cling to the feeling of nostalgia, so enjoy the little piece of history below!

      But, all that aside, let’s get to the reason you’re here! Coffee! Or, like a modification of it? I went to Midtown Coffee on my first full day of being unemployed once again- this has not been my week, and I won’t even pretend like it has been. I know you guys have likely been in my shoes, so you know what’s up. Anyway… Like the title of this post says, I got lemonade today.

      Generally, I abstain from lemonade, but it was their signature coffee. What? Of course, ya girl had to try it. I really don’t do sour stuff, so I opted for Berry flavoring to temper that down a little. They use unroasted green coffee beans in making this unique concoction, and I’m here for it to be honest. It surprisingly is quite good with the berry flavor doing it’s intended job of tempering the sour taste and a slight kick of coffee flavor underlying. It’s almost indistinguishable from your usual berry lemonade, save for the aftertaste.

 

     This is one I recommend for a summer staple, if it sounds like it’s up your alley. In fact, can I recommend this as a legit coffee for people who don’t like coffee? 

Taste; /5

This is a pretty clean cut 5/5 for me. It introduced me to something I generally don’t like in a way that I really enjoy it. The caffeine may be to credit for that, and I’m fairly certain it is. I definitely recommend looking into this one from the Midtown Coffee House if you’re in the area or pitching it to your friendly local barista.

Hometown Cravings; Cadbury Creme Egg Latte!

Do you guys remember those quinesential creme-filled eggs that the stores sell right around Easter? Spring is Officially underway and Easter is in the near future. I remember being a child and walking into the local Walgreens or CVS… Eckards? I would always make a sharp beeline to the Easter Display. Filled with items of delicate pastel patterns and most importantly, Candy. Among those, was the excruciatingly sweet Cadbury Creme Eggs.

I remember that they always had those amazing commercials with the different animals in bunny ears, and to this day I occasionally say “Buh-meow, buh-meow”

 

Don’t ask why, but I love that commercial. I don’t know if it’s the cat or the llama that gets me. But even that amazing piece of artistry was never enough to make me like Cadbury Creme Eggs. Today, that changed. I went to My Boulange after doing some production shots for an indie movie a co-worker is filming, and saw they had a Cadbury Creme Egg flavored specialty latte. You guys know I love me some lattes.

This drink is a mixture of dark chocolate, white chocolate and vanilla, and all delicious. As expected with the two chocolates, it’s quite rich. The espresso offers a little tinge of nuttiness to the flavor. Of course, I got it on ice and it was almost like drinking a caffeine infused chocolate milk. Two of my favorite things! Chocolate milk and caffeine! 

The flavor of the vanilla is subtle and sweet, I kind of like vanilla playing second fiddle to chocolate. I don’t know why I don’t combine them more often. I guess I kind of see them as opposites so in my mind they cancel each other out. Or, that’s as close to logic as I can get with that idea.

I’m really into the My Boulange French Decor, and the numerous Eiffel Towers that are in attendance. Of course I had to take a picture of my coffee with the Eiffel Tower behind it… or one of them.

Taste
5/5

My consensus can be summed up in one word: Yum. If you want a longer rating, it was abosolutely delicious. A little bit richer than a regular mocha, but that’s what you get when you mix two chocolates. I really enjoyed it, but I don’t know if it can dethrone my recent favorite: the caramel macchiato.

New at Starbucks; Ari’s Cloud Macchiato

New at Starbucks; Ari’s Cloud Macchiato

    Good Morning, guys! If you’re living under a rock, or just don’t particularly follow Starbucks new releases, you may not have heard about the Cloud Macchiato. Otherwise, you may be fully aware of the controversy surrounding this new drink. This little cup of coffee has caused its share of strife in the vegan community due to being a collaboration between Starbucks and the musical Ariana Grande, also known as Chanel Number 2 .

    The cause for the outrage surrounding this Macchiato topped with fluffy, lightly sweetened foam, is that it’s not vegan. I wasn’t aware that Ari was vegan, but her fans are. And, they are livid. To top it off, there’s not vegan option, due to the foam that crowns it having a main ingredient of egg whites. 

    Drama aside, the Cloud Macchiato comes in two flavors, cinnamon and caramel. If you’ve been following for a while, you know I prefer the super sweet flavor of caramel in my drinks. This is no different. This post is going to be a little bit of a roller coaster, because at first, I didn’t like it. But after about 15 sips, and sloshing it in the cup, I eventually decided I kind of dig it.    

 

    I was so excited to try it, not because of the origin, but because I’ve always loved macchiatos. I firmly expected to love this right off the bat. At first sip, which I took without stirring or sloshing, was a bitter affront to my taste-buds. I mean, maybe I do like my drinks overly-sweetened, but this was on a different level. I did notice a richness hiding under the sharp bite that greeted me. And, once I got the courage to drink a little more, I notice the foam had sunken into the drink and toned down the flavor to a mild nuttiness with some kick.

    At that point, I stirred it, because I wasn’t picking too much of the caramel. Once I did that, the foam was almost completely mixed in and the caramel had come to the surface to make a difference. I think this was the point where I decided that I do sort of like this one. It’s not for those who don’t like bitterness, that’s to say it was very nearly not for me. My final impression was that it was pleasantly sweet, the foam and caramel worked together to tone down my initial impression. Even with the sweetness I was loving at this point, I had a slight reminder of the bitterness lying wait under the surface. 
 
 

Taste; /5

    I award this one a 4/5, I don’t feel like I can give it a five just because it was a little of a hit and  miss for me. In the end I did enjoy it, but it wasn’t the best macchiato. While not being the worst, either. I do think that a 4 is a fair rating for the Cloud Macchiato.

 

Hometown Cravings; Midtown Coffeehouse and I Guess I Like Hazelnut??

Hometown Cravings; Midtown Coffeehouse and I Guess I Like Hazelnut??

     Hey guys, it’s your favorite punctual blogger! I’m so sorry that  I’ve fallen behind on you, I do have a quick update on the youtubey stuff, though! I have been filming two videos and I aim to have one or the other of them up next week! I don’t want to spoil too much, but I’m kind of hype! I’m definitely planning to do a lot of reviews, while I get my bearings with the whole filming thing.

     This last week I took myself back to Midtown Coffeehouse to see what kind of new stuff they had. You guys know they always have something new every time I visit! I checked out the board, which you can see above. After looking at it for a good thirty seconds and debating, I stepped up to the counter and order the Haze. My only thought was literally, “I hope I like this,” because I know how picky I can be with flavors. Despite trying to force myself out of my comfort zone, it’s extremely hard to introduce myself to new flavor, like the haze.

     The Haze is a delectable mix of Cinnamon,White Chocolate and Hazelnut, the latter of which I’ve never liked. I took a chance on this one after the reassurance of the lovely lady behind the counter. I was ecstatic. So, quick thanks for getting me to give the haze a go!

    My immediate impression was that it had a nice earthy richness, not of espresso, but just a mild nuttiness. That’s the thing I generally despise about Hazelnut, because I don’t like “peanut-y” flavors from my coffee. I’m used to espresso, but just straight up trailmix nuttiness? Nah. I was surprised by the way the mocha and cinnamon mingled to mask the hazelnut with a soft sweetness…. dare I say, haze?

     The cinnamon, being the primary flavor, lent a nice coolness to the subtle espresso vibes that lurked underneath the richness. It was a richness that felt a little heavy on the tongue, and not in an unpleasant way. I would definitely say the Haze is another one for the people who don’t like espresso. 
The Haze midtown coffeehouse
     I literally can’t wait to start this next leg and have time to do my editing for the videos! Guys, I’m working on them, pretty actively, aside from school work. I just… have to do something with all this makeup that’s piling up. In the meantime, while I get this started, go check out Smokey Glow, my latest favorite youtuber!
 

Starbucks Does Valentines Day With The Cherry Mocha

    

    Hey Guys! Today’s post is brought to you by Starbucks- because my roots are showing. And my roots are super crazy about the sweet, dessert-like beverages that Starbucks comes out with. Even though Japan usually gets better drinks than we do over here in the states. Like the Princess frappe that I feel really hurt about still. I may have heard about the Cherry Mocha a little late, which isn’t new. I generally am a little behind the curve. But I’m still hype that I at least heard about it!

   Even though I bet Japan has more options, we did get a Cherry Mocha for the big day, and the one thing I’ll say negative about it is that I think it would have been more geared toward the holiday if they had capitalized on the whole pink thing that monopolizes everything about romance. Like, I kind of feel like they missed with that decision. But, that aside, the flavor really raises to the aesthetic. This Cherry Mocha tastes like the Cherry Cordial candy that I always think I like more than I do. And I mean that- it tastes exactly like a Cherry Cordial. 

Cherry Mocha Taste Graphic
Visual representation of the taste of the Cherry Mocha

      This is really more like dessert, but honestly, what else is new. It’s a great example of Starbucks doing what Starbucks does best- sweet coffee that may as well be a milkshake. That’s literally not even a diss, though it sounds like one. It has the richness of dark chocolate, with a little sharpness, which makes me think of the Ghirardelli 70% cacao chocolates. I love dark chocolate, so I’m kind of all about it. The cherry adds a little bit of tartness to the flavor, which is delicious. I don’t even really like cherry flavors, generally, I’m a raspberry girl. 

     Honestly, I can see myself begging to stop by Starbucks on Valentine’s day just for this. I’ve been hooked on it for the past week since I caught wind of it. There’s just something about drinking a chocolate covered cherry topped with whipped cream and granulated sugar that speaks to me on so many levels. It’s sweet, it’s rich, it’s something that I’ve been trying to like for years in a package that works for me. For some reason, I don’t like cherry cordials, but I thoroughly enjoy the Cherry Mocha.

     Valentines Day is in 3 days, guys! I hope you guys are ready and that those of who don’t have anything planned for the occasion at least take time to pamper yourself! 

Update;

    I know I kind of died with Youtube, I was sick for so long and literally had no voice, I do have a load of products that recently got here that I’m testing for future videos as well as I’m working on the tarteist pro remix video. I’ll be cross posting it here. Please be gentle with me guys, we can learn all of this crazy stuff together! 🙂

20 Ways to Show Yourself Love on Valentine’s Day

       Hey guys, the day draws nearer! I know I’m not doing anything huge here for the ol’ commercial holiday, but that’s not the same for everyone. Couples and those who are not in a relationship, can both enjoy this holiday! This post is one for the latter! Even though this is a hugely romanticized “holiday”, it doesn’t mean the same things to us all. And in fact, some may find things generally done on V-Day as cliche and corny.

      While I’m not disagreeing with you, hypothetical new friend, I do think it can be fun and slightly cathartic to indulge yourself in the bright colors and saccharin sweetness of the day. I used to take myself out for the day, so I figured I’d share my favorite self care activities for the occasion!

 

In honor of SweetHearts that are not with us this year, due to Nekko shutting down shop.

 

  1. Youtube and Coffee – My favorite way to do this self care thing! 
  2. De-Stress with some Yoga
  3. Soak up the sun
  4. Watch cartoons
  5. Take a bubble bath
  6. Treat yourself to candy
  7. Start a new craft 
  8. Connect with a friend
  9. People watch at the mall
  10. Go to a new store and try things on that are outside of your comfort zone
  11. Make cocoa and watch documentaries
  12. Binge on Disney Movies
  13. Write out your stress
  14.  Doodle!
  15. Go thrifting
  16. Take yourself out for lunch
  17. Visit an arcade
  18. Take a ride with the windows down and the music up
    1. Seriously, this is so incredible. Last year I drove three hours for a speech, and even though I was stressed, there was something so freeing about just feeling the wind in hair. I was almost giddy by the time I got there and there were no nerves.
  19. Go downtown!
  20. Take the day off and play video games!

      Despite Valentine’s Day being called “Singles Awareness Day” by some, there’s nothing wrong with being single. Sometimes being alone is fun. Who doesn’t enjoy blaring the music while alone in the car? Singing alone in the shower? As I’ve gotten a little older, I’ve begun really valuing and enjoying my own company. Dinner alone? Bring it. Solo Arcade? Done. Lone Festival enjoying a lovely view on the Ferris wheel with no interruptions? Yes, please.

    I know, It can feel odd at first to go to lunch and hog a booth to yourself, but trust me. No one is looking, no one is making any judgements. 

So, go forth my lone venturers and treat yourself! Heck, one thing I didn’t put on the list because it’s technically for the day after Valentines’, is two words: clearance candy. How’s that for some self care?

Sweet Sentimentality; 3 Valentines Dates for Long Term Couples

     Hey guys! I know, I know, I’m late today too! I’m pleased to report that I’m finally able to speak, and I’m feeling good. Since I’m feeling better, I’m starting to really feel Valentines day. I was thinking earlier about places I would love to be other than work on this temperate February day. I started thinking about where I how I would love to celebrate our third Valentine’s day with my better half. I really can’t even believe it’s been that long.

       Really, why should the courtship stop just because you say “I do”, or even just a “Yes”? Make your fellas, or ladies, feel desired and treat them to an idea from this post!  I know how tight things can be while waiting for those long-lost taxes, so I’ll be keeping this one fairly budget friendly! And guys, these ideas are great if it’s not Valentine’s Day too!

Valentines Coffee

Coffee Date in a Neighboring Town!

      You know it wouldn’t be JnJ without me throwing coffee at you! This one is one that’s good for pretty much everyone… and if coffee isn’t your forte, most coffeehouses serve tea. It’s really fun to see what different types of flavors different shops will come out with to commemorate the day!

      Pick a nice window seat and put your phones away. Spend some time rediscovering each other and just chatting. Pretend it’s a first date (without the awkward silence!). Bonus points if you try new drinks, because, why not. After coffee, take some time to wander around the surrounding area or maybe decide on dinner. Take this time to de-stress and laugh together. You can even harken back to an important event in your shared history… like the place you got engaged.

     I suppose, this one doesn’t have to be out of town. If you have a favorite local haunt, feel free to visit it instead!

Hometown Hotel Date

      This is one of my all-time favorite dates! Depending on what place you decide to choose for your lodgings, it can either be budget or a ritzy. My favorite part of pretty much every vacation, is the hotel bed. The pillows are always so extravagantly fluffy, like I’m burying my face in a sheep. Anyone else love hotel beds?

      The other thing I love about vacation, is learning about a new town. This particular idea is literally so fun. Just pick a place and pretend you’re from out of town. Try to look at your town with new eyes. Take advantage of any attractions, events or restaurants that are either not seen or rarely visited.

      Last time we did this, we went to Cracker Barrel, because for whatever reason I only eat there when I’m in another city or state. It sold the illusion for me!

Valentine's Meal

The Great Bake

       So far out of this list, this is the one I’m considering for our valentines day. I really like the idea of preparing a nice meal together, tag-teaming the prep work and everything. There’s something that strikes me as so romantic about that! A million bonus points if you add some candles and some home-made (or just mixed) drinks. We really like making Cucumber Mint Lemonade, which is what we had on our first Anniversary.

    If that sounds up your alley, our recipe is super simple! 

  1. Throw some Milos Lemonade (or whatever brand you like) into a beverage dispenser like you’d find at Walmart.
  2. Chop one or two cucumbers and throw’em in the lemonade 
  3. Add fresh mint to taste
  4. Let it sit in the fridge for a couple hours to let the flavor develop

       It goes great in a wine glass and makes me feel so sophisticated, with the added bonus of reminding me of our early days!

     Let me know if you guys have gone on any of these dates, and what you thought! I’m hoping to be able to drag my lovely Fiance` on an adventure to celebrate the occasion, personally. I’m so excited for our third Valentine’s Day together, and I’m hoping for many more! 

      Also, share your own Budget Friendly Valentine’s datenight ideas below!

 

 

 

 

Chain; Starbuck’s Cascara Coldbrew… ew?

Chain; Starbuck’s Cascara Coldbrew… ew?

     Hey there guys! Thank you for joining me for this late post! I know I usually post around noon, but I’ve honestly been swamped. And that’s on top of trying to recover from whatever has me under the weather. I’m bringing us back home with a (somewhat) new-ish drink from everyone’s favorite chain coffee shop; the Cascara Coldbrew!

    I’ll keep this one fairly short, but I want to preface this with a thanks to the gentleman who allowed me to try a sample of this one! Based off the title, I didn’t care for it, but I really liked the opportunity to give it a go! 

     The first thing I did was sniff it- because, this is what I do, especially when faced with an unfamiliar “Cascara”. Right off the bat, I was stricken with how sharp it smelled. I caught the scent of bitter nuttiness that was offensive to my sugar-cravings. If you remember my attempts to like coffee soda, this gave me war flashbacks. Not a fan of remembering a drink I’ve worked so hard to repress.

 

The Drinkening

 

     Onto the actual drink itself; I procrastinated on taking the first sip. Despite the super nice barista assuring me that it was citrusy, and creamy, I found that I did not agree. Once I was able to psych myself up, I closed my eyes and took a sip. Right off the bat, I noticed the froth was mildly earthy, almost nutty with those citrus undertones. 

     The coffee portion of this drink, which I was excited for before having one handed to me, was surprisingly smooth. Not sweet in the least, which I should have figured. It honestly could just be my propensity for sweets, that made me take this as bitter. I did note the citrus flavor kind of peaking through the nuttiness. My general feeling is that it’s like coffee soda, without the carbonation. I think my least favorite thing about this one, is that it’s rich. It’s got a heavy thickness that lingers at the back of your throat and leaves you tasting it for minutes afterward. 

      Honestly, I did look into sweetening it. But I was unsure on how I wanted to go about that. I kind of feel like sweetening it would make it into a different drink, and I may try that next time… If there is one. I think what I’m trying to get at with this post, is that super nice baristas aside, I don’t like the Cascara. And I guess I certainly don’t like cold brew.

 

Taste; /5

     Really, I don’t think this one needs any explanation. I think this is first time since the Cinnamon and Almondmilk Macchiato that I’ve been this displeased with Starbucks. That Juniper latte was rough, but I don’t know… I think this one might give it a run for its money. 

     It’s okay Starbucks, you can’t please everyone!