Pacific Coffee, the swashbuckling competitor of Starbucks and Costa, has three new baijiu-injected coffee drinks. Yes, baijiu. Options include the Huadiao Mocha, Erguotou Zesty Chillino and Erguotou Pink Grapefruit Chillino, all RMB48.
Huadiao is a variety of huangjiu (literally “yellow wine”) from Zhejiang province. It is also the base liquor for the Huadiao Mocha (pictured), which begins with a shot of booze swirled into a whimsical cross between a frappe and espresso. The drink is small enough that you can taste the liquor, but big enough that it functions effectively as a coffee beverage.
We’re not sure this would work as well without the chocolate, and so the other two baijiu drinks on the menu remain uncharted territory (we've sampled enough, thank you). They feature erguotou, a more famous baijiu you might recognize from cigarette-shop shelves.
Will this lead to a wave of alcoholic coffee beverages in Beijing malls? Will Dunkin’ Donuts start putting tequila shots in Coolatta’s? Will Starbucks add rum to its venerable Pumpkin Spice Latte? Only time will tell.
Photos by Holly Li, words by Nick Mateer
Pacific Coffee; for locations, visit www.pacificcoffee.com.cn