Guest Author - Gayle E. Santana
Café de Olla La Paz Chiapas (Café La Paz) and I met at the Coffee & Tea Festival last year. It was a full day of coffee from start to finish but Café La Paz managed to impress me and stood out amongst the multitude of pickings of the day. It was surprising on two counts.
One is that Café La Paz is an instant—something I only use in an emergency, like there is NO coffee to be found. The second is that it is sweet and if this is not your first time here, you know I do not add sugar to my coffee. But the sweetness of Café La Paz comes from cinnamon and brown sugar cane. It is a perfect melding of quality ingredients creating a perfectly wonderful coffee experience.
I had taken away a pack but didn’t really try it again until the other day. It confirmed my first impression. This is a very delicious worth having any day coffee. Just think, instead of suffering the office coffee swill or lack thereof, all you need is a source of hot water and milk unless you take it black. It went very nicely with my evaporated milk.
The traditional drink is made with granulated coffee, cinnamon, dried orange peel, cloves and brown sugar cane boiled in a terra cotta pot over an open wood fire. Café La Paz is low in sugar. It is made with brown sugar cane and cinnamon which give it the signature sweetness but it is not a syrupy sweetness like some of the flavored coffee drinks we often purchase from some of the chains. It contains only 20 calories black. This is good news for dieters but apparently also good news for those with controlled Diabetes. According to the video on the blog, those with controlled diabetes can also drink Café La Paz because refined sugar is not used (please do check with your doctor).
Because Café La Paz is low in caffeine, it will make a lovely evening treat that is not only low in calories, it will not keep you awake. Replace the water with milk and you will have a delicious cappuccino. Put in the blender with ice and milk and you will have a delicious drink on a hot day (you know I will be trying this one).
As a creative chef, my imagination started working when I thought about the possibilities, so I reached out to Mr. Leavy, spokesperson for La Paz, about a recipe book. He says, “We don't have a recipe book yet, per se, but we personally have used the coffee as a bread baking ingredient, along with adding some to ice cream and breakfast cereals/oatmeal for flavoring and sweetening. It was mentioned at the Coffee &Tea Festival that it might be also good for a cocktail infusion.” This sounds great to me. I will have to get my supply and get busy in the kitchen.
You can purchase Café la Paz on eBay right now with no auction necessary. You can get two 14 ounce resealable bags for 19.99 with no shipping charges.
Mr. Leavy also let me know, “In the NYC area, we recently expanded to the Fairway Market stores and the Passaic Shop Rite in NJ.”
The New York City Coffee & Tea Festival will be coming up on April 18th and 19th, 2009. You can stop by and check out a sample for yourself. See you there.
Café La Paz on Ebay.
Visit the Café La Paz blog to learn more about this coffee’s tradition and how it is made, as well as to comment or ask questions.