Finely ground matcha, as you’ll read on page thirty-two, has been the center of Japanese tea ceremony for centuries. A bristled bamboo whisk, or chasen, is the most traditional tool for creating the tea foam characteristic to this sweet, grassy beverage.
Though it’s only recently risen to easy-to-use prominence, agave is nothing new. Harvested in Mexico from the stalks of the agave plant, honey-colored agave nectar or aguamiel is as natural to local culture as sugarcane is in Southeast Asia—the same sap is also distilled into Mexico’s famous tequila and mezcal. Unlike sugarcane, which sweetens most of our favorite beverages, agave is smoother than liquid honey, allowing it to dissolve instantly into cold beverages. It boasts a much lower glycemic index than other sugars, which reduces blood sugar spikes, and a taste that is light and unobtrusive. What’s more, agave is sweeter than cane sugar, so a little goes along way.
Organic agave makes an easy, considerate addition to cream and sugar stations and blends admirably into frosty drinks, cocktails, and even baked goods. Madhava offers light and amber varieties (the latter with a taste profile more akin to maple syrup).
Willing And Able
Able Brewing’s American-made brewing add-ons enable coffee enthusiasts to outfit their extractions in style. With an eye towards the travel brewer, Able’s AeroPress Travel Cap fits securely to the device, turning the AeroPress’ plunger into a storage chamber for beans, filters, or both, while simultaneously providing a grip for plunging, an a non-slip surface for inverted brews.
Cup and Saucer
New Zealand-based Acme & Co.’s ceramic line-up perfectly blends the heavy-duty feel befitting to café chaos with classic styles highlighting the finer side of coffee. Rosettes stand out against interesting yet comforting hues.