You guys have told us that you want flavours, and we've listened! #TEAMTRUESTART have been having a hilarious time in the development kitchen and we wanted to share some of the stories with you.
Flavours can be a tricky business, so after Simon and I's obligatory first stab at home with our Vitamix blending random ingredients with TRUESTART Coffee, we headed to Willy Wonka's Flavour Factory (at a top secret location here in the South West!) to meet up with flavour experts Marc and Wendy, who have worked tirelessly with us to discover what really goes with coffee - whether you'd expect it or not!
We've chosen to work exclusively with natural extracts and flavours which are both sugar free and vegan. There are plenty of milky, sugary coffee-based drinks out there already and if TRUESTART Nitro Cold Brew Coffee has proved anything, it's that you can convert die-hard milky coffee fans and achieve insane smoothness and sweetness in a more subtle way, without adding unnecessary dairy and calories.
So how does the development process work? Good question...
- We lock ourselves in the development kitchen
- We throw a ton of ideas out there - a mixture of our own and yours, of course!
- Marc and Wendy carefully blend a first recipe for each (while we watch in awe)
- We all taste each recipe and feed back. What are our initial thoughts? Do we think the flavour has mileage, or is the reality just too weird?
- The next round of recipes is created and we tweak them to perfection!
- We don't sleep for days - is this the caffeine or the excitement? Who knows
Here in the development kitchen we have more (extremely sensitive) scales than your pet goldfish, and boy do we need them. You would be amazed what a difference a single grain of sea salt makes. It's the difference between enhancing an awesome flavour profile and drinking what tastes like actual sea water. Salt?! I hear you cry! What on earth have we been up to in there.
As you'd expect, the more conventional flavours were obvious winners. Things like vanilla, caramel and chocolate. There's a reason these are loved by the masses and they absolutely have their place.
Not ones to play by the rules, we're looking to broaden our horizons and create refreshing yet somewhat familiar flavours with a punchy TRUESTART twist. They obviously have to score perfectly on taste, and maybe these conventional flavours can help carry something more unusual.
We tried fiery, spicy, creamy, sweet and everything in between! Citrus flavours were contentious and we had loads of fun experimenting and debating. Let's take lime. Zingy and refreshing, or does it just taste like flat Corona? Both, since you ask! Coconut was one of my faves. There's a whole world of delicious and not-so-delicious herbs and spices out there and I was amazed at the different provenance makes - Cornish sea salt tastes completely different to regular salt. It's not always as you'd expect either - pure Madagascan vanilla was not to my taste at all, but I absolutely loved the blended vanilla from various regions. It was naturally sweeter and more flavoursome.
It turns out that some pretty whacky combinations worked really well with TRUESTART. Unsurprisingly, there were plenty that didn't! Whilst I'm not going to give away everything just yet, I can tell you that we have now trialled a number of absolute winners, each with their own personality!
Now to decide which to launch first - so there's of work still to do. We’re so excited for our summer range launch!
What flavours with coffee win your vote? Are there any weird and wonderful combinations you've tried and loved, tried and hated or always wanted to try?! This is your chance to have a say by voting on what you'd like us to create! VOTE NOW via the below links.