Wine and coffee had sex and gave birth to Apothic Brew
One of my old haunts in the Bay Area was Caffe Frascati in downtown San Jose. As a freelancer, I would often go there to work, take meetings, or scribble away at my personal writing. I liked it for a number of reasons.
First, it's a cool multi-level space: downstairs you can talk shop with a colleague over a panini, and upstairs you can lounge with a book on comfy couches. Second, there's live music (I even performed there once with my old folk band). But most importantly, it's a cafe bar. I could go straight from sipping a tiny cup of ristretto espresso, to guzzling a big glass of Montepulciano, all without leaving the premises.
Well now, if I want to enjoy both coffee and wine, I don't even have to switch glasses.
Coffee and wine, together at last
Apothic, true to their name, has pulled some alchemical stuntwork to put coffee and wine in the same bottle. Specifically, they've mated a red blend with cold brew. And the result is a little hybrid baby named Apothic Brew.
They sent me a bottle to try out, and along with it came a copper-hued vessel that basically looks like a cross between a stemless wine glass and a travel mug. My favorite part? You'll never know which beverage I'm currently drinking. If I still worked in an office, this would be the perfect way to sneak in some post-lunch Tempranillo.
Popping open the bottle and pouring a taste is...confusing.
The wine has a nice garnet color to it. Inhaling its aroma brings a big, sweet, rich mashup of fruit and java. It's almost overwhelming, honestly. While the scent is concentrated with coffee, the taste is surprisingly more subtle. It definitely leans toward sweet fruit and raisins, but with an undercurrent of candied coffee that hangs around after you've gulped it down. There's little bit of chocolate in there, too.
Is this something I'd drink every day? Nope. Is it something I ever would have thought was a good idea? Probably not. But as I sit here, typing and sipping, I have to appreciate what they've done. I'd probably bring this to a dinner party and open it up around dessert time, because I think this would shine in small servings, paired with cakes or pastries.
Honestly, I also could see myself ordering this at brunch with a stack of pecan pancakes. I'm seeing visions of chilly autumn days, lounging by the fireplace, chomping on chocolate donuts in between sips of vino. That is, if I had a fireplace...or still lived in a city that has seasons.
This cafe-bar-in-a-bottle is limited edition, so grab it while you can. And lemme know what you decide to pair it with. Meanwhile, I'll be attending all future meetings with this groovy mug in my hand, because I day-drink like a professional.