Oat Milk Could Be the New Almond Milk

iStock
iStock

We’re far removed from the days when a milkman would drop clanging glass bottles of fresh cow’s milk on our doorsteps. For the past several years, dairy-free milks (almond, soy, hemp, coconut) have been edging out the alternative. But those upstarts may soon be replaced by the newest non-dairy beverage on the block: oat milk.

Not familiar? You soon will be. Oatly, the leading manufacturer of oat milk, is poised to make 2018 a breakout year. The company has spent its early marketing efforts on distributing the milk directly to baristas at coffee shops around the country, creating a grassroots support system for their retail debut. Because oat milk foams like regular dairy creamers (thanks to the blended canola oil), it developed an underground buzz, going from 10 locations to more than 1000 in less than a year. Those same supporters are likely to pick up cartons as they hit grocery store shelves in the coming months.

According to Oatly’s website, oat milk is made by milling oats with water to create a squishy texture. The resulting starch is broken down by added enzymes like malt sugar, which acts as a sweetener. That blend is then sifted to remove whole oat shells, leaving a creamy liquid that’s pasteurized and packaged.

Oatly plans a rollout at Wegmans stores, Shoprite, and other retail locations, including Amazon. After that, they may partner with the big coffee chains like Starbucks and Dunkin’ Donuts.

But how does it taste? Food & Wine reviewed a number of alterna-milks and declared Oatly to be “buttery,” with a flavor reminiscent of milk that’s been mingling with shredded wheat. Your palate can be the judge when Oatly goes on sale soon.

[h/t Quartz]

Move Over, Gritty: Whizzy the Geno's Cheesesteak Is Philadelphia's Newest Mascot

Meet Whizzy: The new mascot at Geno's Steaks in Philadelphia.
Meet Whizzy: The new mascot at Geno's Steaks in Philadelphia.

When you think of the characters that represent Philadelphia, you might picture Gritty, the Phillie Phanatic, or a Benjamin Franklin impersonator looting a Wawa after the Super Bowl. Now, there's a new mascot presiding over the city of brotherly love. As The Philadelphia Inquirer reports, Geno's Steaks is now home to Whizzy—a giant, anthropomorphic cheesesteak with a perpetual smile.

Geno's, known for its cheesesteaks and glowing neon facade, is a Philly institution. The restaurant's new mascot is the product of more than eight months of redesigns. His name, an homage to Geno's classic steak sandwich with Cheez Whiz, also went through a several iterations, including "Whiz Head," before the name Whizzy became official.

Geno's Steaks unveiled Whizzy to the world on Monday, October 21. The costumed character has all the elements of a Geno's cheesesteak, with a body consisting a long roll stuffed with cheese, onions, and thinly sliced rib-eye. But unlike the fare you'd normally fine at Geno's, this cheesesteak also has limbs and a face—and barely fits inside the kitchen.

The mascot's debut kicked off Geno's "week of giving." On Tuesday, Whizzy and Geno's owner Geno Vento will deliver a $1500 check to Easterseals, a nonprofit dedicated to children and adults with disabilities, and on Thursday, they will give a check in the same amount to the Engine 10 fire station in South Philly. Geno's will also hand out free coupons and cheesesteaks in honor of the week.

Pat's King of Steaks, Geno's competitor across the street, tells The Inquirer they have no plans to come up with a rival mascot as of yet.

[h/t The Philadelphia Inquirer]

Starbucks Has a New Phantom Frappuccino That’s All Black and Covered With Slime

Starbucks EMEA
Starbucks EMEA

Starbucks is about to release a beverage that looks suspiciously like something Hocus Pocus’s Sanderson sisters might brew in their human-sized cauldron.

If the Tie-Dye Frappuccino was Glinda, the Good Witch of the North, the Phantom Frappuccino is absolutely the Wicked Witch of the West. It’s a sinister-looking mixture of black sludge and green slime, and it seems about as edible as an oil spill.

However, if you’re familiar with the Broadway musical Wicked, you know that Oz's famous villain was tragically misunderstood based partially on her off-putting appearance—so, too, is the Phantom Frappuccino. According to Delish, it’s actually refreshingly fruity, and vegan to boot. The drink contains coconut milk, mango, pineapple essence, crème Frappuccino syrup, and charcoal powder, and the slime is a combination of lime juice, lemon juice, more charcoal powder, and spirulina extract (which is green).

It’s a welcome break for anybody who started sipping pumpkin spice lattes way back in August and is already experiencing burnout. Unfortunately for Americans, this ghoulish drink is only available in Europe; Starbucks is launching it on October 26 for five days only.

An impulse jaunt across the pond for the sole purpose of getting your hands on a delightfully evil-looking Frappuccino might not be the best financial decision, but you can always concoct your own at home—activated charcoal is used in everything from toothpaste to skincare products, and you can buy a whole pound of the powder on Amazon for just $12.

[h/t Delish]

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