Starbucks Experiments With Whiskey Barrel-Aged Coffee

Just weeks after introducing ice cream to select locations, Starbucks has announced the debut of two additional new menu items. For a limited time, Fortune reports that the company's Seattle Roastery is now selling coffee made from beans aged in whiskey barrels.

To make the latest specialty drinks, green Sulawesi coffee beans are scooped into empty whiskey barrels salvaged from Woodinville Whiskey Co., a local distillery. Over the course of several weeks, the barrels are then turned, by hand, to ensure that every bean absorbs the oaky aroma.

"You get those earthy notes mingling with the oak to create a cup that’s unlike any other,” Duane Thompson, manager of the company's Global Strategic Beverage Innovation team, said in a press release. Once they’ve been aged, the beans are roasted and used to make two drinks: Barrel Aged Cold Brew and Barrel Aged Con Crema.

Both drinks are sweetened with vanilla syrup (also aged in a barrel) and the hot con crema coffee comes topped with cascara sugar and foam as well. The Starbucks Reserve Whiskey Barrel Aged Sulawesi beans will also be available to purchase by the bag. 

[h/t Fortune]

Sorry, Kids: Soda is Now Banned From Children's Menus in Baltimore

The war on sugary drinks continues. Following several cities that have passed laws allowing them to collect substantial sales tax on sodas and other sweetened beverages, Baltimore is taking things a step further. A new ordinance that went into effect Wednesday will prohibit restaurants from offering soda on their kids’ menus.

Leana Wen, the city’s health commissioner, told the Associated Press that the ordinance was enacted to “help families make the healthy choice the easy choice.” Instead of soda, eateries will be expected to offer milk, water, and 100 percent fruit juices.

If you’re wondering what will stop children from sipping soda ordered by an adult escort, the answer is—nothing. Business owners will not be expected to swat Pepsi out of a child’s hand. The effort is intended to get both parents and children thinking about healthier alternatives to sodas, which children consume with regularity. A 2017 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study found that 30 percent of kids aged 2 to 19 consumed two or more servings a day, which can contribute to type 2 diabetes, obesity, cavities, and other adverse effects.

Businesses in violation of this kid-targeted soda prohibition will be fined $100. Baltimore joins seven cities in California and Lafayette, Colorado, which have similar laws on the books.

[h/t The Baltimore Sun]

'Lime Disease' Could Give You a Nasty Rash This Summer

A cold Corona or virgin margarita is best enjoyed by the pool, but watch where you’re squeezing those limes. As Slate illustrates in a new video, there’s a lesser-known “lime disease,” and it can give you a nasty skin rash if you’re not careful.

When lime juice comes into contact with your skin and is then exposed to UV rays, it can cause a chemical reaction that results in phytophotodermatitis. It looks a little like a poison ivy reaction or sun poisoning, and some of the symptoms include redness, blistering, and inflammation. It’s the same reaction caused by a corrosive sap on the giant hogweed, an invasive weed that’s spreading throughout the U.S.

"Lime disease" may sound random, but it’s a lot more common than you might think. Dermatologist Barry D. Goldman tells Slate he sees cases of the skin condition almost daily in the summer. Some people have even reported receiving second-degree burns as a result of the citric acid from lime juice. According to the Mayo Clinic, the chemical that causes phytophotodermatitis can also be found in wild parsnip, wild dill, wild parsley, buttercups, and other citrus fruits.

To play it safe, keep your limes confined to the great indoors or wash your hands with soap after handling the fruit. You can learn more about phytophotodermatitis by checking out Slate’s video below.

[h/t Slate]


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