Hazelnut Flavored Coffees: Number 1 In Popularity Among Coffee Lovers!

Hazelnut flavored coffees rank among the most popular flavored coffees in the market. The tradition of flavoring coffee with hazelnuts goes back many centuries. According to tradition, Alpine monks added crushed hazelnuts to their coffee to flavor it. Why did these monks choose hazelnuts and not another type of nut to do this? Hazelnuts were plentiful and economical as a flavoring agent.

Hazelnuts have been used in confectionary to make praline, something monks very likely made for themselves and their communities. Hazelnuts were also widely used by many people in combination with chocolate for truffles and other chocolate delicacies. Hazelnut oil, pressed from hazelnuts, has also been used as a strongly flavored oil in many dishes in many countries for a long time.

Hazelnuts offer health benefits when consumed by themselves or along with coffee. Hazelnuts are rich in protein and unsaturated fat, and also contain significant amounts of vitamin B1 (thiamine, thiamin), a soluble vitamin that readily enters and exits the body daily. Why not combine the powerful antioxidants in coffee with the healthful benefits of hazelnuts by munching a few tasty hazelnuts while enjoying a delicious cup of top grade specialty coffee? Even better, make it a cup or two of a hazelnut flavored coffee and get the full aroma and flavor of hazelnut without the “fuss” of grinding nuts and adding them to the coffee. Be sure to get freshly roasted-to-order gourmet coffee, “plain” or flavored, to enjoy with your healthy hazelnuts (the dark chocolate covered ones are especially good).

There are many combinations of coffee and hazelnut flavor available to coffee lovers. They are sold as whole bean or ground as well as regular or decaffeinated hazelnut flavored coffee choices. Some of the most popular hazelnut flavored gourmet coffee selections, all made from rich, top grade, 100 per cent Arabica bean specialty coffee include the following:

Vanilla Hazelnut: This coffee has the pleasing flavor of hazelnuts combined with vanilla. Vanilla is a very familiar and inexpensive spice. It is used primarily for flavoring and aromatic uses. Vanilla dates back to Mesoamerican times when the ancient peoples of Mexico used it in rituals. Nowadays, vanilla is cultivated in many places around the world, including Mexico, Madagascar, and Indonesia. An interesting fact about the vanilla plant is that the vanilla flower is an orchid that produces a fruit. This fruit is the result of the pollination of the flower which is actually quite difficult for the vanilla plant. Why? Because the plant has both female and male organs which are naturally separated to prevent self-pollination. Natural pollination is done by only one type of bee native to Mexico. In other places in the world where vanilla is cultivated, pollination is done by hand or artificially.

Hazelnut Cream: Hazelnuts are very versatile and combine very well with cream. Together, they make a rich and wonderful flavor combination that does not overpower the natural aroma and taste of coffee. Nuts in general are great sources of natural proteins and rich in fiber, phytonutrients, vitamin E, and minerals, and hazelnuts are no exception. So with your gourmet hazelnut cream flavored coffee, have a few hazelnuts and enjoy the delicious benefits of both.

Hazelnut: This classic flavored coffee adds the flavor and fragrance of hazelnuts to gourmet specialty coffee. Before commercial roasting and flavorists made this combination possible, people would enjoy hazelnut flavored coffee with the bits of nuts in the cup, sometimes an uncomfortable drinking alternative. Now consumers can enjoy this wonderful flavored brew without the bits of nut in the cup and the mouth. This gourmet flavored coffee is delicious: rich 100% Arabica bean coffee and hazelnut aroma and taste.

Hawaiian Hazelnut: This gourmet flavored coffee mix has the “just right” amount of Hawaiian style hazelnut’s wonderful aroma and flavor reminiscent of coconut and “paradise island.” Like all flavored coffees, this is a calorie free coffee featuring the characteristic flavor and aroma of hazelnut with the flavorful, rich taste of specialty coffee. This is a cup worth tasting!

Cinnamon Hazelnut: This brew combines the lively, smooth flavors of cinnamon and hazelnut with hand picked, top grade specialty coffee. It is truly amazing to see how a fruit (coffee cherry), a nut of the hazel tree (hazelnut, also known as cob nut or filbert nut), and the bark of the cinnamon tree come together in a stupendous trio to deliver amazing flavor in one cup. The characteristic flavor and aroma of the cinnamon comes from a compound in the essential oil of the cinnamon tree bark called cinnamonaldehyde which is used for flavoring chewing gum, candy, beverages, ice cream among many other applications.

Chocolate Hazelnut: Chocolate and hazelnut are favorites among people of all ages and consumed year round. When their aroma and taste are added to coffee, the result is a fabulous flavored coffee that ranks at the top of the favorites. Chocolate is made of cocoa paste, cocoa butter and sugar. The cacao tree is a native of Central and South America, top specialty coffee growing regions. Chocolate, like coffee, has powerful antioxidants and good nutrients which create health benefits. Chocolate, coffee and hazelnuts are also known as “energy foods.”

Chocolate Cinnamon Hazelnut: What happens when you bring together the flavor and aroma of the seeds of the fruit of the cacao tree with the cinnamon tree bark, the nut of the hazel tree and the cherry fruit of the coffee plant? Frankly, you end up with a flavored coffee that is second to none. This flavored coffee ranks very high in popularity among flavored coffee drinkers.

So now, are you ready to say “Aloha!” and enjoy a delicious cup of gourmet Hawaiian Hazelnut flavored coffee?

Lipton Green Tea – Health Benefits, Caffeine Content, Flavor, and Quality

Lipton, one of the most widely-known brands of tea, is best known for black tea. However, in recent years as green tea has gained in popularity, Lipton has increased the prominence of their green tea offerings. This article aims to answer three questions about Lipton green tea: (1) Is it healthy? (2) How much caffeine does it contain? And (3) does it offer superior flavor and aroma?

Health Benefits of Lipton Green Tea:

Many of the health benefits of tea are attributed to the presence of antioxidants, a class of chemicals that protects cells against oxidative stress. Unlike most tea companies, Lipton has actually measured and published the antioxidant content of their green teas, a practice which I find commendable. According to their website, the basic (unflavored) Lipton green tea contains 190mg of flavonoid antioxidants per teabag.

How does this compare to other teas? The average amount of antioxidants in a cup of tea varies significantly from one tea to the next, and also varies based on steeping time and other preparation factors. There are a range of figures available as to what constitutes a “typical” amount of antioxidants for green tea. However, the published antioxidant content of Lipton green tea is on the high end of commercial tea bags, suggesting that it is probably relatively healthy as green teas go. However, an independent study published in 2005 in the Journal of Food Chemistry and Toxicology (Friedman et. al.) found otherwise–and actually ranked both Lipton green and black teas towards the low end of a number of brands of tea tested, as far as antioxidant content is concerned.

Caffeine Content of Lipton Green Tea:

The caffeine content of Lipton green tea, according to their website, is about 45mg per serving (one tea bag). Their decaf teas contain 4mg; the decaffeination removes most, but not all of the caffeine. Lipton’s flavored green teas contain slightly less caffeine because they are blended with other ingredients which are naturally caffeine-free; the caffeine content of these teas ranges from 15-30mg. These figures are average among teas, which typically range from 15-75mg of caffeine per cup. Brewing can also affect caffeine content–longer steeping lengths will extract greater amounts of caffeine.

Lipton (Bottled) Iced Green Tea:

The story for the health impacts of Lipton’s bottled tea is significantly different from that of their tea bags. Bottled tea is very popular in the U.S. due primarily to convenience, but it has a number of downsides. As of writing this article, the caffeine content of Lipton’s bottled teas was not published on their website. Also, the antioxidants in bottled tea are known to break down over time, and there is concern that the published antioxidant content for bottled teas is greatly overstated.

Another problem with bottled tea is that it is almost always sweetened–and Lipton’s iced green tea is no exception. The sugar content of bottled teas have made them come under scrutiny from the medical profession as well as health advocates. Like most companies selling bottled tea, Lipton labels their iced tea in a deceptive manner–a single 20oz bottle is labeled as offering 2.5 “servings”. This can place the total sugar content per bottle over 50 grams for certain flavors. The amount of sugar in a single bottle exceeds the maximum recommended amount of sugar that a person is thought to have in a day.

In addition, Lipton’s iced tea is sweetened with high fructose corn syrup, a product that has come under scrutiny for a variety of reasons, including potential negative impacts on health, and the use of unsustainably-produced, genetically-modified corn in its production. Lastly, Lipton’s bottled iced teas contain preservatives and artificial colors. Lipton offers “diet” iced teas, but these contain artificial sweeteners rather than being unsweetened.

Flavor, Aroma, and Overall Quality:

You’re probably asking yourself the question: “Yes, but is it good?”

Tea connoisseurs often consider Lipton the laughing stock of tea companies. It is widely viewed as a “cheap” or “generic” brand, with connotations of low quality. However, as the creator of a website where anyone from the public can freely review teas, I have observed that people consistently give Lipton’s products higher ratings than one might expect. My own personal experience has been that Lipton’s tea bags are at least as good, if not better, than a number of other mainstream brands available in most supermarkets. Lipton also has good consistency, reflecting decent quality control. While I prefer drinking loose tea, I find that Lipton’s offerings are often considerably more flavorful than some tea reviewers give credit for.

In Summary:

If you are looking to obtain the health benefits of tea from a product you can find in virtually any supermarket, brewing your own Lipton green tea is not a bad choice, although further research is needed to resolve the discrepancies between the data published on Lipton’s site and the results of independent analysis. I would strongly recommend staying away from Lipton’s bottled products, however. And if you really care a lot about quality, aroma, and flavor, you may want to consider exploring the world of loose tea: that is truly where the best teas lie.

Flavored Tea and Its Importance

To know all about flavored tea, one must first gain some background information about tea processing. As a matter of fact, processing plays a central role in producing different kinds of tea. This processing traditionally consists of the following steps:

o The topmost leaves and buds on the plant are manually picked.
o The plucked leaves are left to wither for 24 hours.
o The withered tea leaves are crushed between metal rollers to blend the naturally occurring chemicals inside.
o The leaves, thus rolled, are allowed to oxidize in the open air for several hours.
o Finally, the oxidized leaves are heated to remove any remaining moisture.

While on the subject, it is worthwhile to know that the type of oxidation performed determines whether black tea, green tea, or something in-between is produced. Black is made by fully oxidizing tea leaves. Green tea is made by steaming the tea leaves before they are rolled. The heat destroys the enzymes, so that the leaves remain green throughout the rest of the process. Black tea is widely used and about 75% of leaves harvested around the world are made as black tea. Bulk of the remaining 25% leaves become green.

There are far too many flavors and to decide which one you would like, it is necessary to narrow down the choice. If you are fond of a particular variety like black, white or green, then you should choose the flavored tea from one of these varieties.

Another secret to choosing the flavor is to opt only for early plucked loose tea. Also bear in mind that high grade quality tea consistent with rich flavor comes from gardens that does manual processing. One should only choose tea with natural flavor and tea with artificial flavor will corrupt the basic essence of the beverage.
Unlike white or green, black tea is the strongest of all teas and thus black can withstand more pungent and stronger flavor. Flavors like chocolate, coffee and strong fruits like currants and plums are delicious with black, but might not be proper for white or green tea. Weaker flavors like mango and pear might be suitable for white or green.

Green tea is favored by many for the simple reason that it has a very natural taste and flavor coupled with a mild sweetness. As a result green tea will go well with almost any fruit flavor. In addition, green tea works beautifully with many herbs and spices including less pungent mint and ginger. White tea is very light and delicate and unsuited for any strong or pungent flavor. On the other hand, it blend excellently with the right fruit or floral like melon, pears, peaches, jasmine and roses.

It is a good idea to choose flavored tea more for their health benefits than mere taste. It is a fact that green and white teas contain the highest level of natural anti-oxidants and thus combining these varieties of tea with other anti-oxidant laden botanical will provide a real health drink. If you are new to drinking flavor, you are missing a real treat. Some are extremely famous and should certainly be part of your tea repertoire.