January 30th: Morning Cup

I was up pretty early this morning. Due to the pending snow on Monday, I had to travel to my allergist’s office to pick up the serum for my weekly allergy shots. The office is about an hour and a half away from my house, and they are only open until 12 pm.

On mornings like this, I tend to stop at Starbucks, but I weirdly wasn’t in the mood for a creamy and sugar coffee drink. I wanted something yummy, light, and not too sweet.

One of my favorite coffee shops in the Lehigh Valley is called The Joint. There are two locations, but I love the hole in the wall shop off of Broad Street in Bethlehem. They have pour-over coffee options, which I love. They roast their coffee and have so many options for their pour-overs.

My go-to pour over there is their Bourbon Barrel coffee. They store these unroasted beans in bourbon barrels for 30 days before roasting. This coffee is robust, full of flavor, and naturally a tad sweet.

This was such a wonderful treat for an early and long car ride on a Saturday morning.

Happy Saturday! ☕️

January 29th: Morning Cup

The commute from Milford to Scranton typically takes about an hour. On mornings like this morning, this means I’m more in a treat to self kind of mood. I usually do the hour commute every other Friday. This allows me to treat myself without feeling like I’m overindulging.

Henry’s on Clay is a cute coffee shop in Dunmore, PA. It is also only about 5 minutes from my work. They have good coffee and delicious gluten-free breakfast, lunch, and brunch options!

You can place an order ahead of time and schedule a pickup time. I love this feature because I place my order in bed, get ready, drive an hour, and pick up my breakfast on my way to work. Easy Peasy.

This morning for breakfast is got an omelet with spinach, tomatoes, and Munster cheese. ( I know, weird, but it’s my fav cheese). And I got their home fries; Henry’s home fries are out of this world!!

For coffee, even though it’s in the single digits in the Pennsylvania mountains today, I got cold brew. Henry’s had unique flavors, so I got a large cold brew with cookie butter flavoring and oat milk. It’s decadent yet not too sweet.

Happy Friday! 🎉

January 28th: Morning Cup

This morning was so cold, and I just knew I needed something warm. I am in Milford today, so my local coffee options are Milford’s Daily Grind and Sparkomatic Cafe and Talkhouse.

I tend to favor the Sparkomatic due to their menu, coffee selection, and overall vibe. They have an extensive allergy/ diet menu. They offer many Gluten Free, Vegetarian, and Vegan options. I love getting their tagalong cookies that are gluten-free, nut-free, and vegan. They are out of this world.

Today though, the Sparkomatic was closed due to some renovations, so my next option was Milford’s Daily Grind.

Milford’s Daily Grind is a great grab and goes, quick coffee option in town. I tend to get a latte from them since they have solid espresso and a wide variety of flavoring options.

This morning I got a large hot latte with whole milk with one flavor pump of vanilla and one flavor pump of brown sugar cinnamon. It is just the warming and cozy drink I needed.

Cheers to Thursday ☕️

Maria Does Coffee: Why is Grind Size So Important?

So does the infamous question “does size really matter” apply to coffee grounds? Oh yeah, it does!

Brewing next level coffee at home requires patience and dedication. But many don’t have the time nor the patience for coffee brewing. One way to help increase the taste and flavor of coffee without adding too much extra work is considering your grind size.

Each coffee brewing method requires a specific grind size for optimal flavor. This allows the coffee and water and brewing method to work in unison to create the best cup of coffee possible.

Luckily, most ground coffee you get in the store is more likely to be a medium ground, which is perfect for your automatic coffee maker at home! If you’re looking to up your automatic brewing game, try grinding your coffee at home!

If you are interested in brewing with other brewing methods, grinding your coffee is easier than locating specific grind sizes of coffee beans to brew with. Like I stated before, most bag coffee in grocery stores is a medium grind, which isn’t optimal for other brewing methods. This makes finding the specific grind size you need harder. If you were to buy whole beans and grind the coffee yourself, you could use your favorite beans in any brewing method you choose!

Here are the steps you need to take to level up your coffee brewing by choosing the right grind size.

Step One: choose your coffee brewing method. Grab yourself a $10 French press or dust off the percolator your grandmother passed down to you!

Step Two: research what grind size is needed for optimal brewing. For cold brew and French press, you’ll need a coarser grind size. For espresso and aero press, you’ll need a finer grind size.

Step Three: look into buying a coffee grinder. You don’t need an expensive grinder to get started. I began brewing coffee with a $15 coffee/spice grinder. Even though I recommend grinding your coffee, if your grind size is supposed to be a medium grind, you’re in luck that you can grab some grounds from the grocery store no problem!

Step Four: choose your favorite coffee beans – make sure to grab them whole if you’re grinding them yourself.

Step Five: figure out the grind setting on your grinder and grind that coffee! I always recommend grinding it right before you brew it to have the freshest coffee, but you definitely can grind ahead of time if you need to!

Step Six: brew your coffee with your newly ground coffee and enjoy!

& it’s that easy to have a better cup of coffee! Brewing extra delicious coffee doesn’t need to happen overnight, nor does it require fancy equipment. Do what you can, where you can, however you can. Small steps collected over time lead to stellar coffee!

If you have any questions about grind size, drop them in the comments! & if you like this guide, keep an eye out for more in the future!

Happy Brewing!

I fell in love with a coffee shop in Selfoss, Iceland.

In the South of Iceland, on route 1, is a little town called Selfoss. We stayed at an Airbnb a few miles from Selfoss. Selfoss quickly grasped my heart. This town had everything we could have asked for; grocery stores, nature, gas stations, shops, and a coffee shop.

Bokakaffid is a book store and coffee shop rolled into one. There are little tables tucked in every corner of this quaint book store. They shelves are lined with Icelandic and English books of all sorts.

It was a dream sitting in this coffee shop/ book store relaxing on the days we weren’t driving all over. I ordered my favorite espresso drink, a cappuccino, and paroozed the bookshelves. I also was able to grab Kleinur, which is an Icelandic donut. I quickly fell in love with this coffee shop.

There were many coffee shops in Iceland that had great coffee and that I enjoyed their atmosphere, but Bokakaffid really topped them all.

I cannot wait to return to Selfoss one day and spend an afternoon drinking coffee and relaxing there.

You can learn more about Selfoss here: https://www.south.is/en/inspiration/towns/selfoss

You can learn more about Bokakaffid here: https://bokakaffid.business.site/

You can learn more about Kleinur here: https://www.biteoficeland.com/kleinur-icelandic-doughnuts/

Top 3 Favorite Holiday Coffee Drinks

I have spent this holiday season trying new coffees! Here are my top 3 that I recommend trying before the holidays are over.

1. Irish Cream Cold Brew at Starbucks

The Irish Cream Cold Brew is a stunning take on a cold brew drink. It’s everything cozy about winter and the holidays in a cup of cold brew. I love the smoothness of cold brew so the creamy taste of the Irish Cream and the sweet cold foam really makes this drink stand out. If you’re looking for a cold holiday drink or just something not traditional, I really recommend this drink at Starbucks!

If you want to make this drink at home I found a good looking recipe here: https://bakedbree.com/copycat-irish-cream-cold-brew

2. Eggnog Latte at Frisky Goat Coffee House

This drink took me by surprise. I enjoy going to Starbucks now and then but didn’t realize they had this. I tried it at this cool local coffee shop called the Frisky Goat Coffee House in Milford, Pennsylvania. I have never loved eggnog but with the holidays underway and the new year coming up thought that it would be a neat thing to try. I was blown away by this drink! The eggnog flavor was subtle and paired very well with the espresso. I must also compliment the craftsmanship of the barista for this latte too. It was extremely well made with the perfect amount if foam for a latte.

If you are no where near the Frisky Goat Coffee House, Starbucks also has this drink. I have never tried the Starbucks version though. So until I do, it doesn’t have my stamp of approval.

If you want to make this at home, here is a recipe that looks yummy: https://www.asweetpeachef.com/eggnog-latte/

3. Peppermint Mocha Latte at Kay’s Daily Grind

The classic peppermint mocha. This is my go to holiday drink at Kay’s Daily Grind in Daleville, Pennsylvania and Starbucks. I love peppermint, chocolate, and coffee so this really is a solid go to for me. I think is captures fresh, warm, and cozy in a cup. I love the local coffee shop Kay’s Daily Grind and that is typically where I get this drink. My recommendation is to get it with have the flavoring and sweetener wherever you get it. I don’t love super sweet drinks and think it can be too powerful with full flavor. I think this drink when half sweetened is delicious yet subtle.

If you want to be cozy at home and enjoy this drink, here is a recipe: https://lifemadesweeter.com/peppermint-mocha-latte/

Even though these are my favorites this season, there a so many good coffee options out right now. I have yet to try something that tastes like gingerbread this season but I’m hoping I will soon!

Comment your favorite holiday coffee drink below! 🎄☕️