Coffee Bean beats Starbucks by bringing nitro coffee to SoCal

Coffee Bean has made a major move to jump ahead of Starbucks in the latest coffee trend: nitro cold brew. The Los Angeles-based chain is offering cold brew coffee infused with nitrogen at 170 cafes in Southern California.

Leading cafe brands Starbucks and Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf have announced major menu changes – one impacting your wallet; the other your palate.

As of last week, Starbucks raised prices by as much as 30 cents on some drinks. Effective at company-operated stores in the U.S., the chain said certain sizes of brewed coffee have gone up 10 to 20 cents; for espresso beverages and tea lattes, prices have increased 10 to 30 cents.

Starbucks told the Register that “these beverage adjustments” will only result in an average customer ticket increase of about 1 percent.

While Starbucks is raising prices yet again, Coffee Bean has made a major move to jump ahead of Starbucks in the latest coffee trend: nitro cold brew.

The Los Angeles-based chain is offering cold brew coffee infused with nitrogen at 170 cafes in Southern California.

The gourmet java experience has previously been restricted to specialty cafes and restaurants serving elite roasters such as Stumptown Coffee, the Portland-based indie acquired by Peet’s last fall. Contra Coffee & Tea in Santa Ana also serves its own nitro brews.

Cold brew is not the same as iced coffee; cold brew is prepared by steeping coffee grounds in cold water. Infusing nitro gives cold brew coffee a silky texture with a foamy head. It looks similar to a Guinness Stout pour.

Coffee Bean’s nitro cold brew is made from a blend of Ethopian and Bali Blue Moon coffees with chicory.

Besides a straight nitro cold brew, Coffee Bean is also offering a nitro latte, and a nitro vanilla bean latte. The nitro drinks range from $4.25 to $5.50. Through Sunday, July 17, customers can get a $1 off all nitro beverages.

Find me at the OC Fair

Catch me at the OC Fair at 5 p.m. tonight. I’ll be judging a new chef battle dubbed “OC Fair #InstaYum Chef Challenge.” The weekly battle showcases the impact social media and food photography plays in creating a desirable restaurant dish. I will be part of a panel rating a professional chef vs. an Instagram chef. Food quality and how dazzling the dish looks on Instagram will be judged.

The weekly battles are tonight, July 28, Aug. 4 and Aug. 11 at 5 p.m. in the OC Promenade building.

Published at http://www.ocregister.com/articles/coffee-723032-nitro-cold.html

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