Whip it good
Love a gingerbread low-fat–milk latte with extra nutmeg and whipped cream on top?
Break your dependence on that aloof barista and learn how to make those fancy drinks yourself.
Sure, those over-the-top seasonal coffee confections are yummy, but they’re also expensive. Luckily, it turns out anyone with a milk frother ($20 at www.target.com) can whip up a knockoff at a considerable savings (or at least avoid a trip out in the cold to get his or her fix). Milk and coffee are cheap—a double-shot latte costs around 69¢—and once you build a collection of syrups and sprinkles, you can bang out these treats in your bathrobe. Our cost per drink is estimated, and includes the price of the syrup and other ingredients used to make each delicious concoction.
Directions For all, pour the coffee into a cup or mug first, stir in flavorings, then add steamed milk on top, and finally garnish with whipped cream and sprinkly treats.
The drinkDamsel in Distress, $3.65 (16oz) at Filter (1585 N Milwaukee Ave, 773-227-4850)
Our version 2 shots espresso, 1 cup steamed milk, 2 tablespoons white-cocoa mix, 3 tablespoons rose syrup (get it at www.creativedrinks.net), ¼ cup whipped cream
Cost per drink $2.12 (savings of $1.53)
Bathrobe barista says… Use homemade, unsweetened whipped cream for a subtle topper.
The drinkPumpkin Spice Latte, $3.70 (16oz) at Peet’s (1000 W North Ave, 312-475-9782)
Our version 2 shots espresso, 1 cup steamed milk, ¼ cup pumpkin butter (get it at Whole Foods)
Cost per drink $2.03 (savings of $1.67)
Bathrobe barista says… We like this one best with a sprinkle of cinnamon on top.
The drinkGingerbread Latte, $2.50 (16oz) at Sips Coffee and Tea (4645 N Kedzie Ave, 773-539-2917)
Our version 2 shots espresso, 1 cup steamed milk, 4 tablespoons gingerbread syrup (get it at www.creativedrinks.net), 2 tablespoons caramel sauce, ¼ cup whipped cream, 1 tablespoon caramel sauce for topping
Cost per drink $2.39 (savings of $0.11)
Bathrobe barista says… Try it with soy milk for an earthy, home-baked flavor.
The drinkTurtle Mocha, $3.70 (16oz) at Caribou Coffee (For locations, visit www.cariboucoffee.com)
Our version 2 shots espresso, 1 cup steamed milk, 4 tablespoons chocolate sauce, 2 tablespoons caramel sauce, ¼ cup whipped cream, 2 tablespoons chopped turtle candy
Cost per drink $2.72 (savings of $0.98)
Bathrobe barista says… Hate to break it to you, but you’re gonna have to buy a whole box of Fannie May Pixies for this one.
The drinkPeppermint Mocha, $3.95 (16oz) at Starbucks (For locations, visit www.starbucks.com)
Our version 2 shots espresso, 3 tablespoons peppermint syrup, 4 tablespoons chocolate sauce, 1 cup steamed milk, ¼ cup whipped cream, 1 tablespoon chocolate sauce drizzle, 1 crushed peppermint hard candy
Cost per drink $2.60 (savings of $1.35)
Bathrobe barista says… Use a top-quality, preferably organic, chocolate sauce for the richest results.