Christmas means the arrival of caffeinated concoctions on the high street: the fact that Starbucks does a countdown to its annual red cup launch just goes to show how much a feature of a British Christmas festive coffees have become. With flavours available across all of the familiar chains from egg-nog lattes to gingerbread, chestnut and praline coffees, there have never been more flavours and varieties available (check out our syrups & sprinkles selections). While some of these milky, sugary coffees can be high in calories, sugar-free, soya, decaf, and skimmed versions are widely available, meaning that a Christmas coffee can be enjoyed by pretty much anyone.
If you’re watching your budget, or prefer to host your friends during the festive season to avoid the queues and crowds, Christmas coffees are now something to be indulged in at home. Renowned English tea house Betty’s of Harrogate are offering ground Christmas coffee beans with a richly nutty taste (and a hint of chocolate) that are suitable for home or office use. Harrods also offer a Christmas Spiced Ground Coffee in a pretty red tin, while old favourites Wittard of Chelsea are offering beautiful seasonally packaged coffees alongside flavoured syrup sets, meaning that if you have an espresso maker at home, you can prepare your own gingerbread latte at a fraction of the high street cost.
Budding baristas can take advantage of the professional-level coffee machines they splurged on this year and create Christmas themed latte art to impress dinner guests (or they can cheat and buy a Christmas tree shaped stencil and sprinkle Cocoa powder through it!). Those with access to these espresso machines or bean to cup machines at work can get their practice by supplying their colleagues throughout the day with festive cheer, and of course, coffee!
Coffee can add to the seasonal mood for just about any occasion, from fundraising coffee mornings to meetings with friends. With the widespread availability at this time of year of star-shaped golden sprinkles, spicy gingerbread, mince pies and sweet syrups, creating your own Christmas coffee-themed event at work or just at home is an easy and fun activity. And don’t forget the addition of extra indulgences too: when the kids are in bed, break out the spirits for a Christmassy twist on old stalwarts such as Irish coffee: Frangelico and cream make a richly indulgent seasonal addition to your coffee, creating a nutty caramel flavour that’s all too easy to enjoy.