Omelets stuffed with melty cheddar cheese. Bacon, egg, and cheese sandwiches. Breakfast of champions, right? Wait, wait, we forgot one: cheese coffee.
What the heck is cheese coffee, you ask? It's not a chunk of cheese melted into your morning cup o'joe—it's more like a sweet-and-savory, luscious take on whipped cream. This cream cheese foam was first popularized when Taiwanese cheese tea started taking over cafés across the United States, and now it's moved onto topping coffee.
"When the sweet and savory taste of the cheese cream meet the pure and aromatic coffee flavor, it's unlike anything you've ever experienced before. The cream adds a twist to the coffee and gives a very smooth texture," says Jenny Zheng, founder of Little Fluffy Head, a downtown Los Angeles-based tea shop known for its cheese tea and coffee. "Our blend coffee is a mix of medium and dark roast, so it gives a very rich coffee taste to stay in balance with the cheese cream."
At Little Fluffy Head, Zheng usually pairs coffee with a cheddar cream, but also offers cheesecake cream and crème brûlée as toppings, which are "almost similar to the whipped cream on top of your mocha or s'mores on top of your hot chocolate," she explains.
There are a few ways to drink cheese coffee, and each method "produces a slightly different taste." Zheng suggests sipping the frothy beverage directly through the cup, "which allows you to maximize the experience and to taste the different layers of the drink—first the bitterness of the coffee and then the sweet and salty taste from the cream."
Mixing the layers gives the coffee a milky flavor, which is "similar to a white chocolate mocha but with a little salty, cheesy finish." It's easier for the cheese to incorporate in if the coffee is served hot, but many fans order a cold beverage so they can decide the ratio of foam to coffee they want to enjoy with each sip.
So next time you reach for a breakfast sandwich, consider doubling up on the dairy with a cheese coffee. It's the new best part of waking up.