Somewhere between artisanal coffee pour-overs with a side of smirk (no cream, no sugar you cretin) and a cotton candy Frappuccino are espresso-based coffee drinks. Punched up with milk, a few spices, cocao powder or (mostly) natural syrups, they’re cool weather sippers to warm your heart and hands.
After a highly-unscientific poll of friends, family and social media, here’s a list of the 10 Best Coffee Drinks in Sonoma County...favorites that pass the BiteClub taste test (in no particular order).
The Bangkok: Sweetened-condensed milk meets lushly-roasted coffee for a taste that’s both exotic and familiar. Flying Goat, 324 Center St., Healdsburg; 10 Fourth St., Santa Rosa.
The Valentino: Gelato, espresso, and coconut syrup blended with whipped cream, A’roma Roasters, 95 Fifth St., Santa Rosa.
Pumpkin Latte: Fall in a cup, with organic, house made pumpkin syrup, Taylor Maid Farms, 6790 McKinley St., #170, Sebastopol.
The Kicker: Espresso and Irish cream served up with a side of youthful enthusiasm and short shorts at Dutch Bros. Coffee, 1300 Mendocino Ave, Santa Rosa.
White Lavender Mocha: A white chocolate mocha with just a hint of floral lavender. Inside their recently-opened cafe and roastery. Bella Rosa Coffee Company, 5491 Skylane Blvd. #116, Santa Rosa.
Aztec Mocha: Dark chocolate, three types of chiles and rosewater make this mocha a standout. Plus, we just love the agro-chic interior. 227 N. Cloverdale Blvd., Cloverdale.
Mint to Be: Vietnamese Iced Coffee (aka rocket fuel) meets muddled mint and homemade organic condensed milk. You’ll want two, but drink with caution if you plan to sleep in the next two days. PhinBar, West End Farmer’s Market (817 Donahue St., Santa Rosa) on Sundays from 9a.m. to 2p.m.
Just a Latte: Two faves for this simple drink of espresso and milk with no frills. Rosso Rosticerria, makes it proper, and if you get there early enough, you can sip it with the world’s greatest bacon scone, 129 N. Dutton Ave., Santa Rosa. Brew Coffee and Beer for their carefully curated seasonal espresso that makes the whole thing extra special. 555 Healdsburg Ave., Santa Rosa
Cortado: Served in a 4oz tumbler (a little bigger than a shot glass), this little caffeine shooter is an espresso with a bit of steamed milk and foam. ACRE Coffee, 21 Fourth St., Petaluma, acrecoffee.com
Want a few more? You got it.