Wednesday, October 21, 2009

A Nashville Coffee Encounter

Posted By on Wed, Oct 21, 2009 at 10:40 AM

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While slurping a pumpkin-and-spice-infused Peregrino at Crema this morning, I was chitchatting with Rachel Lehman about the recipes for her two new autumnal coffee drinks.

The Peregrino thickens coffee with actual pumpkin pulp and adds a medley of cinnamon, clove, orange zest and nutmeg for a soothing seasonal sipper.

The Lavender Macchiato, on the other hand, relies on fresh herb flavoring, which begged the question of how to best make an herb-infused simple syrup.

Rachel and I were bandying recipes back and forth, when she deferred to a customer who walked in the front door. None other than Patterson House owner Ben Goldberg was stopping by Lehman's Hermitage Avenue establishment for his morning cuppa. Who better than Goldberg, whose midtown speakeasy makes all its bitters, tinctures and syrups in house, often from herbs grown in the back courtyard.

Of course, I was so flustered by the small-world encounter that I forgot to ask him whether he would recommend muddling the herbs first, then boiling, or just boiling alone. Instead, we made a lunch date for later today at Gabby's Burgers & Fries, where I'll get to the bottom of the muddling business. Stay tuned.

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