Starbucks Wants To Serve You Coffee Infused With Nitrogen

Lately, Starbucks seems to be catering to both sides of their clientele: for the Pumpkin Spice latte fanatics who are concerned about their calorie consumption, they’ve put mini-sized frapps back on the menu. For the environmentally-conscious single-origin folks, they’ve started investing positively in the coming coffee crisis. What’s next? We’ll tell you what’s next: nitrogen-infused coffee.

It’s not as weird as it sounds, actually. If you’ve ever gotten a Guinness on tap, then you know what nitrogen can do for a drink. Nitro coffee is essentially the same thing: infused with around 20% nitrogen from a refrigerated tank, it comes out in that gorgeous cascade of light-to dark, leaving a creamy head on top. It’s entirely dairy and sugar-free — just cold brew and nitrogen — but the infusion of gas lends it a sweet, creamy taste.

Nitro coffee: for when day drinking isn’t an option.

As per usual, Starbucks isn’t the first to offer nitro coffee. It’s been around for the past four or five years, depending on who you ask. Stumptown’s got it, Caribou Coffee’s got it. And now, with the introduction of their Nitro Cold Brew, Starbucks is the third major coffee chain to start offering it.

According to Eater, the Nitro Cold Brew has been in development for the past year. Mackenzie Carr, a coffee education specialist with Starbucks, said the company’s cold brew roast, with its smooth flavor and lower acidity, was a natural choice to pair with nitrogen.

The Nitro Cold Brew is currently available at select Starbucks in Seattle, including its Roastery and Tasting Room, but the rest of us who live outside of Hipsterville, USA are going to have to wait a hot minute to try it. The press release says the nitro coffee will be available in “more than 500 company-operated stores by the end of summer, starting with additional stores in Seattle and Portland, followed by New York, Chicago, Boston, San Francisco and Los Angeles.”

In the meantime, you can try Starbucks’ new offering for the swing side of the coffee-drinking spectrum, the Vanilla Sweet Cream Cold Brew, available as of today. It’s cold brew topped with cream, which has, of course, been infused with sugar and vanilla. Because, after all, it is Starbucks.