Posted in Kafevend Blog

Summer has long been labelled the silly season. Parliament shuts up shop and with the absence of political intrigue news typically slows up and the media seek out strange or quirky stories instead. In fact, we all tend to lighten up as summer, if it's behaving itself, indulges us with long, hot, lazy days, perfect for barbecues, picnics and days on the beach. Frisbees, water pistols and swim suits get their annual outing. The pressure is off. We're relaxed. We kick back. We are even sometimes silly. Thus, although this summer is proving anything but a slow news season, it's still a great opportunity to bring to your attention a distinctly odd food, a coffee flavoured food, but we're talking here about a food that it would never ordinarily occur to anyone to season with coffee.

First though, bear with us while we digress; it will become pertinent in good time! When you do head off on your lovely picnics this summer you'll probably take some crisps with you. They're ideal for reinvigorating warm, limp sandwiches, a top tip there for those who eschew modern cool bags and stick with their trusty Tupperware! And there are plenty of flavours to choose from, especially as Walkers, that behemoth of the crispy snack world, are running another 'Do Us A Flavour' competition this year. The event first ran in 2008 when the company were inundated with customers' ideas for a host of weird and wonderful crisp flavours. Six flavours are chosen for production and then we, the great British public, get to buy them and try them before voting for our favourite. Hats off to Walkers; it's a brilliant tool for engaging with consumers. This year's six flavours went on sale on July 21st and will be around until October, so plenty of time for a taste, but the UK six are all savoury flavours – nothing overly silly about them. However, if you're off to the USA look out for crisps, or should we say potato chips, from Walker's sister company Frito-Lays. Their parallel competition has resulted in a flavour that we'd love to get our hands on here at Kafevend.

Yes, you've guessed it, you can currently purchase a packet of cappuccino crisps on the other side of the Atlantic. You won't lose any sleep over them either because they're caffeine free. They're the idea of Chad Scott, a sociology lecturer at the University of Nevada in Las Vegas. Now we knew that Americans were heavily into their coffee, but could this prove a bean too far? We're all rather more accustomed to coffee-laced cakes, desserts and chocolates; we've even previously investigated the possibilities of coffee flavour breakfast cereal on the blog, so to use coffee in a savoury context seems counterintuitive. Nevertheless, how many of you have ever used coffee as a marinade? Seemingly, it works equally well with chicken, pork or beef and you couldn't ask for a more savoury application than that. So perhaps the crisps will be a hit. If they win they'll become a permanent flavour in Frito-Lay's range. They might even find their way over here... especially if it's silly season!

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