What has quickly become an incubator for “out there” drinks, the Starbucks Reserve Roastery in Seattle had put something quite unexpected on its menu: a limited-edition Pepper Nitro with a Jerky Twist.
Starbucks describes the drink as freshly ground Congo coffee, slow-steeped as cold brew and served on draft through a nitro tap. It’s then infused with a sweet and savory malted fennel black pepper syrup and topped with a layer of honey cold foam and finished with a sprinkling of cracked pink peppercorn. But the pièce de résistance is the garnish — a bamboo skewer of natural beef jerky made with grass-fed beef.
The idea behind the drink was to highlight the characteristics of Congo coffee. And, as it turns out, the sweet and herbal spice notes of the varietal naturally paired well with savory ingredients (aka beef jerky).
“With the first sip, you get a hint of the honey cold foam and the aroma of the pink ground peppercorn,” says Starbucks’ Raegan Powell, who helped create the new beverage. “The real surprise is the salty savoriness of the jerky garnish, an exciting complement to the smooth and sweet finish of the nitro cold brew experience.”
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Since opening in 2014, the Reserve Roastery has introduced nitro cold brew, a spiked coffee drink, barrel-aged coffee, cold brew mocktails and was instrumental in bringing the cascara latte to market. But this is the first time they’ve introduced a garnish that would make any Bloody Mary jealous. What does it all mean???