Have you tried High Brew Coffee yet? I spied it at Target a while back, and finally decided to try one yesterday.
It’s kept in the juice and soda aisle of the grocery section, rather than the coffee aisle, which kind of threw me off, but that’s where Target keeps their iced coffees and teas.
I went to get some new eye cream and hypo-allergenic mascara because I’ve been having issues with the makeup I was using before, but of course—as it always happens in Target—I was tempted by other things, and $50 later I had a cold brew among other random purchases in my basket. You got me again, merchandisers! #NotMadAtIt
Anyway, the cold brew…
I’m always up for trying a new product, especially if it’s widely available and something I can take on the go. You never know when you’re going to need a caffeine hit mid-shopping spree, and it’s good to know in advance what will do the trick, am I right?
So, I brought home the High Brew Dark Chocolate Mocha to try, poured it over ice and realized something…
My taste for coffee is changing.
Up until recently, anything that included chocolate would be my absolute go-to. I’ve never been able to enjoy anything (especially beverages) with TONS of sugar, but I was all about flavored coffees and creamers. It’s so much fun to discover a new flavor, add it to your cup and enjoy, right?
I still enjoy trying new flavors and concoctions, but more and more I’m appreciating the flavors of a good cup of coffee without the overbearing sweetness of additives. We started buying Coffee-Mate Natural Bliss creamers, and after I got used to having actual milk and cream in my coffee again, I started preferring the simple Sweet Cream version over the other flavors. And I started preferring unsweetened lattes and espresso from craft coffee shops over the indulgent, syrupy mixtures from the big coffee chains.
Sounds a little crazy, right? Partly, it’s because I have more time and flexibility working from home, so I can rely on freshly ground, local beans, and partly it’s because I’ve stopped being afraid to try new coffee.
I feel like there’s a huge disconnect between great, craft coffee and quick, everyday coffee. Most coffee in quick-stop American locations like franchises, super markets and dare I say it, gas stations, is all kind of the same. It’s quickly made for caffeine addicts on the go, who unfortunately don’t take the time to test out different roasts and find the best one. We just grab the stuff we’re used to, add cream, sugar and maybe a flavor shot—because that’s what everyone does—and go on our way, none the wiser to the magical land of craft coffee that is right around the corner.
But it’s not hard to find great coffee. As with most of the food and grocery products in the U.S., people are demanding better coffee these days. We’re still busier and more mobile than ever, but we’ve seen what cheaply made, unnatural ingredients can do to our bodies, and we want change.
Which is why it’s great to see artisans and entrepreneurs who are finding ways to make healthy, delicious, organic food and beverages in simple, portable, affordable packages. You just have to take a little bit of time to research and find these companies and their products.
Or, you know, happen upon them in the beverage aisle at Target.
When I tried the High Brew Dark Chocolate Mocha, I honestly thought it was too sweet and couldn’t finish it because I’m not a fan of the taste of Stevia. BUT. As I said, I’ve never done great with sugar, and lately I prefer almost none in my coffee, so that’s just my personal taste preference.
I should have known better and grabbed the Dairy Free Black & Bold or the original Double Espresso formula, but give me a break. I’m new to this whole “less is more” thing, and I’m human…chocolate calls to me.
I’m planning to go back and grab those other two varieties for another try, but I will say I love the tiny can, (which you can toss in your purse for the day in case you need it) and I always love something that’s ready to go in a moment’s notice. You can leave these cans in your desk drawer at work, and grab some ice when you need it during an afternoon meltdown. That type of convenience is a huge plus for me with any product. Plus, their coffee is fair-trade certified, which earns them some bonus points.
If you love sweetened, flavored coffees then I know you’ll love this one, so just be honest with yourself about your tastes. My usual go-to in the Starbucks variety of bottled iced coffees is the Low-Calorie Iced Coffee + Milk, so I’m guessing the High Brew Double Espresso will probably be a better alternative for me. I just got a little crazy this time and went right for the indulgent option…a Target high will do that to you.
Lucky for us, High Brew has got options for everybody, so give them a try next time you’re on a shopping binge or need a boost to get you through your afternoon.
And more importantly, don’t be afraid to try new types of coffee. Or any new things! It’s totally normal to grab a quick option from the pharmacy or grocery store when you’re running errands and don’t have time to make a separate stop at the local coffee shop, but if you really enjoy a good cup of coffee and want to get into even better options, all you need is a little time and research to find some real experts who have just what you’re looking for.
I’ve always loved coffee, and now I’m having so much fun learning more, researching, talking to people and taste-testing things that previously would have scared me off with their high-brow craftsmanship. We all deserve a damn good cup of coffee, and it’s not out of reach, so let’s keep exploring and try new things together, shall we?