If it’s summer, there’s a damn good chance that every other person on the street is toting around a cup of iced coffee.
This year, we’re nominating an alternative for summer’s drink mascot of choice: iced cacao.
We’ve been brewing Crio Brü’s ($15 for a 12-oz bag) roasted and ground cacao beans and pouring the concentrate over ice with cold water and almond milk all week (get the recipe here). And we’re hooked. The fact that cacao is loaded with antioxidants and hearty-healthy minerals like zinc and magnesium doesn’t hurt its chances for replacing our morning coffee either.
This is no childish chocolate drink. Brewed pure cacao is deeply, darkly chocolately, but in a deliciously bitter (and low-calorie) way. Summer’s sticky heat has got us tense enough without adding a jittery dose of caffeine. Thankfully, brewed cacao contains theobromine, which packs an energy punch without the jitteriness.
When we asked Dr. Eric Durtschi, the president and founder of Crio Brü, how he came up with the idea to start the company, he was quick to fess up, “I have always been a chocoholic.” Plus, chocolate was in his blood: Durtschi’s dad used to work for Russell Stover.
The company offers multiple varietals of Fair Trade cacao beans from around the globe with both organic and seasonal options.
Cacao also has another leg up on ground coffee beans: The already-brewed cacao grounds can be sprinkled on top of yogurt or into baked goods.