I've never hidden the truth that I LOVE coffee. It's the first thing I want when I wake up in the morning and if it didn't keep me up late, it'd be the last thing I want at night. When I am stressed, there is nothing like a cup of that to soothe me and if I'm tired there is nothing like a cup to pep me up. Of course there are days when I over use it to soothe me and pep me up so I end up a jittery mess, but most of the time, it's the thing I want to drink, usually in moderation.
Because my coffee habit is daily, it's hard to justify daily runs to coffee shops to get my fix, so I try, diligently to consume my coffee from my home. Occasionally someone will gift me a giftcard to Starbucks or Peets and I'll gleefully spend it on myself without sharing, but for the most part, I drink my coffee in my home. I have a nespresso machine, a regular coffee maker and a french press so there isn't much excuse not to make my coffee at home.
Enter the coffee shop Philz. They are located down the street from my church/kids' Korean school so the chance to go there exists at least twice a week. And I want to go twice a week because I love their Mint Mojito Iced coffee, which I know, if you've never had it sounds FUNKY, but man oh man...it's so good. SO good. It's one of those coffee drinks that goes down so smoothly that you're left wanting a few more cups after you've drained the last drop.
The drink is popular enough (the coffee shop probably) that the line usually wraps outside the door and into the parking lot. I think I sent Brother there once at 5pm and there was no line, but most often than not, there IS always a line and it's always a long one and it's always a wait. Husband, in all of his infinite patience, has no patience to wait for coffee (because he doesn't LOVE IT LIKE I DO) and refuses to wait in line that long for coffee. He also objects paying that much for coffee (again because he doesn't LOVE IT LIKE I DO) so let's just say my chances for Philz Mint Mojito Iced Coffee are few and far between. I think the last time I had it, I wanted to show my friend Philz, so SHE waited in the line and SHE paid for it and we chugged it down like it was no one's business while our five kids between us were in the back seat asking what the big deal was. (Coffee kids. We like it. Stop asking questions. We're drinking.)
The past two times I had a chance for Philz, I drove by and the line was too long and too intense and I just didn't have the bandwidth to get it, but oh...the craving for my drink, when suddenly it hit me - I could make this at home. In fact, how hard could it be? I've had it enough times to know what's in it, and I had enough knowledge to make a general-in-the-neighborhood-similar creation, so I set out to try.
Today was my day to focus on my getting my mint coffee fix, and the first round, although I guzzled it down (I was thirsty, thank you) was not that great. I retooled, rethought, and reworked and came up with this second version. The combination of cream, sugar, coffee and mint - it's indescribably smooth. I bought some "takeaway" cups to pour some for my friends who also loved it and appreciated Joz Mint Mojito Iced Coffee. (Jo is short for Joanne.)
Philz hand brews their coffee, which adds to the smoothness of their mix, but I think with the cream and the sugar - it's not absolutely necessary. Just use whatever brewing method you have available, bearing in mind that the original brew must be extra strong to stand up to both the ice and the cream that you'll be adding in. I've put my version of proportions here, but you may need to tweak it a bit to get the right combination you're going for.
Joz Mint Mojito Iced Coffee
Makes 1 cup, double or triple or quadruple as needed
¾ cup water
¼ cup coffee grounds (adjust according to the intensity level of your coffee - I prefer a milder, smoother roast, hence more grounds)
1 handful of mint (about 8 to 10 leaves)
1 tablespoon raw sugar (turbinado sugar)
1 tablespoon heavy cream (more or less as desired)
cup of ice
sprig of mint for garnish
Brew ¾ cup of coffee using ¼ cup of grounds using your preferred method - hand brewed, coffee maker, french press.
While coffee is brewing, take handful of mint and raw sugar and using the back of a spoon or a muddler (from your cocktail set) muddle the mint with the sugar so that the mint is bruised and the oils are released. You will smell the mint more intensely.
Once coffee is brewed and hot, pour over mint and sugar mixture. Stir and mix well so that the sugar is dissolved. Pour coffee over ice and add heavy cream. Stir. Garnish with mint sprig.
Drink. Repeat as necessary.
One for me, another for me, another for me...