For sleep-deprived humans, drinking coffee has long been the preferred morning perk up method but now there’s an onslaught of caffeinated items promising to add more pep to your step. You can drink it infused with wine and even get a serious kick with the world's strongerst brew.
But would you actually prefer to chew your caffeine?
Einstein Bros. Bagels is launching the world’s first caffeinated bagel Thursday. Dubbed the “Espresso Buzz Bagel,” each pastry contains 32 milligrams of caffeine—about a third of what you’ll find in the average 8-ounce cup.
The Lakewood, Colo.-based bagel chain says it’s been working on the product for about nine months. Spurred by younger consumers’ interest in craft coffee, the bakery hopes this “unique and innovative” food offering will be a hit with tired hipsters across the country.
“We have watched the coffee category expand and adapt as Millennials converted to coffee drinkers, attracted by the smoother flavor and artisanal characteristics and third- and fourth-wave coffee,” Kerry Coyne, Einstein's senior vice president and head of marketing and research and development, told Fox News via email.
“We knew our culinary team could deliver that same premium, hand-crafted sensory experience with the beloved category hero of espresso in our best-in-class, fresh-baked bagel."
The caffeine in the bagel is sourced from both espresso and coffee-cherry flour. Einstein’s exact recipe is proprietary but in addition to packing a caffeinated punch, the new bagel also has 13 grams of protein, derived from cocoa.
We’d all love a little extra energy in the morning, but do the enhancned bagels actually taste any good?
The product left tasters divided in a pretty even split.
The product itself resembles a dark brown pumpernickel bagel and, upon the first few nibbles, tastes like a chewy plain bagel with a slightly sweet taste. After a few more bites, however, the bitterness from the espresso really kicks in.
“This tastes like chewy coffee and I’m not sure that’s a good thing,” said one taster.
“It’s insanely bitter,” said another, who wasn’t quite sure if it should be eaten plain or paired with cream cheese.
But others couldn’t get enough.
“I love coffee and I love this. I just wish I had some [coffee] to drink along with it,” said one taster.
The bagel itself has just 3 grams of sugar and 2.5 grams of fat (the whole thing is 230 calories), so it’s healthier than a donut. About three hours after consumption, there were no jitters and most tasters reported feeling pleasantly alert. Though there’s no limit to how many bagels one can buy or consume at a time, Coyne contends that those with caffeine sensitivies should keep that in mind when trying the Espresso Buzz Bagel for the first time.
Says the SVP, “If a consumer would avoid drinking several colas in one setting due to the caffeine content, then the same restraint should be applied to eating multiple bagels in one sitting.”
The new bagel with a caffeiene kick is one of three new “Boosted” bagels coming to Einstein this week. There's the Cherry Chia bagel, which is vegan and has Omega-3 rich chia seeds and oats, has 12 grams of protein, and the Savory Parm bagel, which boasts three types of cheese and contains 13 grams of protein.
If the new bagels sell well, Einstein says they could become a permanent menu fixture along popular picks like Cinnamon Raisin and Blueberry—but for now, they’ll only be available for a limited time. So if you want to chew your coffee, check out the Espresso Buzz bagel soon.