My Italian grandmother loved a specific coffee soda that was produced around the block from her two story walk up in Brooklyn, New York. It was called the Manhattan Special Espresso Coffee Soda and my grandmother, Mary, of blessed memory, would ask my father and me to buy a few cases of this soda every week. From a nostalgic point of view, it was delicious, refreshing, and my first real coffee soda. Since I created Chazzano Coffee Roasters in October 2006, I have been dreaming about bottling our own coffee soda.
The problem with Manhattan Special and many other coffee soda beverages is that their added ingredients change the flavor profile of the coffee or include sugar and other unnecessary flavorings, both natural and artificial. When you come to our cafe and ask to add sugar or cream to our coffee, we gently say, “Try it, first. Do you know what happens when you put cream or sugar in Chazzano Coffee? G-d cries and an angel loses its wings!” We say that because we want you to enjoy the many possible flavor profiles, the mouthfeel, the body, depth, and complexity. When you put sugar or cream in your coffee, those variables change, are hidden, or are now masked by the additives. However, we gently encourage you to drink it black for health reasons. Does anyone really need to add calories and sugar to their diet? We want you to enjoy this refreshing beverage all day long without any health concerns.
I was pleasantly surprised, really thrilled, that our first attempts at creating a coffee soda without sugar or additives was successful. We brew our fresh roasted coffee as a Cold Brew and then add water and carbonate it. That’s it. All of this wouldn’t have been possible without our Roasting Manager, Austin Giles, who is a beer home brewing enthusiast. With his help, we’ve been perfecting our coffee soda brewing, kegging, and bottling skills.
The Chazzano Cold Brew Coffee Soda has an unique mouthfeel and the flavor profile is similar to a beer. Our most recent coffee soda has rich caramel notes. Our coffee soda is available on tap at our cafe now. It is also available by the bottle or 4-pack. While you’re at Chazzano Cafe, try the new Fruit of the Bean Cascara Soda. It’s sweet, with pineapple and passion fruit notes.