Monday, November 18, 2013

Product Review - Califa Farms: Pure Iced Coffee with Almond Milk...

A few weeks ago my husband discovered something amazing. Almond milk iced coffee!  It’s made by Califa Farms and comes in three flavors - Mocha, Double Espresso, and Café Latte. We were so excited by this incredible revelation that we bought all three and not a single bottle lasted through the weekend. We sucked it back like crack.

My husband is the real coffee drinker in our marriage, which is funny because when we first met he never touched the stuff and I was a hard-core latte addict. Somehow over the years we’ve been together these roles have reversed and now he’s the hard-core caffeine user while I mostly ignore the stuff. Of course I enjoy a latte or a mocha, or a cappuccino now and then, but mostly I try not to drink it, and typically only allow myself the pleasure about once every few weeks or months, or when I’m on holiday. Since getting back from Montreal however I’ve had some difficulty kicking the caffeine monster and so it’s been something of a weekly, twice weekly, or even thrice weekly event as of late, but I digress.

Even though I’m not the coffee lover/drinker I used to be, there is just something so fantastic about being able to walk into a grocery store and pick up a bottle of pre-made vegan iced coffee. Pre-made iced coffee in a bottle is not something we as vegans typically get to enjoy because they’re all contaminated with milk. The only other company I know of who’s making a vegan iced coffee for sale is Silk, but I’m not sure how widely available it is. I’ve only ever seen it in one store in my area, and it’s not always in-stock. 

Califa Farms on the other hand seems to be gaining in popularity and it’s being carried in Whole Foods, which means it might just stick around for a while. The company is California based - as their name suggests - and is committed on working with local California ingredients, as well as making their farming practices and company as eco-friendly and sustainable as possible. They also make sure to only use coffee grown on Rainforest Alliance Certified Farms. Which means that the farmers growing the coffee beans do so without harming rainforest, rivers, soil, or wildlife. The Rainforest Alliance Seal also ensures that farmers are paid a just wage, and have access to healthcare, and education. All great things.

Currently Califa Farms makes three flavors of iced coffee - the aforementioned Café Latte, Double Espresso, and Mocha, - as well as Five flavors of almond milk - Unsweetened, Original, Vanilla, Toasted Coconut Almond, and Holiday Nog, - and three flavors of citrus juice - Lemonade, Lemon Limeade, and Orange Juice. However since this is a post about their iced coffee flavors I’ll stick to that.

Of the three coffee flavors I have to say that I love them all, but Mocha might be my favorite followed closely by Double Espresso. What I like about these drinks is that they’re only 90 calories per serving, have a very nice and mellow coffee flavor without any real almond taste, and are not overly sweet. The double espresso has 10g of Sugar per serving, with the other two flavors have 13g of sugar per serving. The texture is smooth, not watery, perfectly creamy, and is just all around delicious. They also have a nice dose of vitamins, and are NON-GMO certified - though not organic.

The ingredients list is pretty straight forward, most of the standard things we’ve all come to expect in our non-dairy milk. Cane sugar is used as the sweetener, and there are no artificial flavors. These drinks do use Carrageenan however if that’s a concern to you.

The only thing I don’t like is that these milks come in plastic bottles. I realize that the plastic is made from recycled material, which is entirely commendable but even still I prefer non-plastic packaging as much as possible, but that’s my only real gripe. Though I would point out that as delicious as these iced coffees are they are a little pricier then your average carton of almond milk, selling for about $5 a bottle. That may seem a bit steep to some but for an occasional ‘splurge’ item it seems alright. I certainty wouldn’t buy these iced coffee drinks every week but they sure are a nice treat when you’re in the mood for it.

So if you liked iced coffee as much as my husband and I do, and don’t feel like making your own, check out Califa Farms. But be warned, it really is hard to just have one glass! If you’re not careful the entire bottle might disappear before you even know it!

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1 comment:

  1. I LOVE all 3 of these coffee flavors! I could drink them every day. lol =D - M