Unveiling the top rising coffee trends and consumer preferences in today’s market

October 19, 20232 min
Lauren Daniels photo
Lauren Daniels Tastewise

Discover the latest coffee trends and consumer preferences dominating the market, including specialty coffee, cold brew, nitro coffee, plant-based milk alternatives, functional additions, and coffee cocktails.


The coffee industry is constantly evolving, and keeping up with the latest trends and consumer preferences is crucial for businesses to stay competitive. Today, the coffee market has diverse customer tastes and preferences, including specialty coffee, cold brews, plant-based milk alternatives, functional additions, and innovative coffee cocktails. The article will explore these rising coffee trends in detail, discussing what makes each unique and how businesses can leverage these preferences to their advantage.

Specialty coffee: A focus on quality, craftsmanship, and unique flavors
Specialty coffee is a popular trend in the coffee industry, with single-origin varieties, micro-lots, and artisanal brewing methods to deliver an exceptional sensory experience to the consumer. Coffee businesses can capitalize on this trend by partnering with reputable suppliers to source high-quality, single-origin, and micro-lot beans.

Investing in expert roasting techniques to bring out unique flavor profiles in the final product is also essential. Offering a variety of specialty brewing methods such as pour-over, Chemex, and AeroPress can also showcase the distinct characteristics of single-origin and unique bean varietals.

Educating staff and customers about the origins, flavors, and craftsmanship behind each specialty coffee offering can create an immersive and memorable experience that resonates with coffee enthusiasts.

The rise of cold brew and nitro coffee
Cold brew and nitro coffee have gained significant traction due to their distinct flavor profiles and textures, offering smooth, less acidic, and creamy alternatives to traditional hot brews. Coffee businesses can differentiate themselves in the market by investing in a consistently high-quality cold brew process, utilizing a proper coffee-to-water ratio, optimal brewing time, and filtration methods.

Exploring opportunities to infuse cold brew with nitrogen to create a frothy, creamy, and velvety texture that appeals to discerning coffee drinkers is also a great way to innovate. Featuring cold brew and nitro coffee as an integral part of the menu, offering different flavor infusions and customizable options to cater to various customer preferences can also be a successful strategy.

Plant-based milk alternatives for a diverse coffee experience
Plant-based milk alternatives, such as almond, oat, coconut, and soy milk, have also captured the hearts of coffee lovers, providing customization options for those following plant-based diets or looking for dairy-free alternatives. Coffee businesses can cater to this trend by offering a wide selection of plant-based milk alternatives to consumers with different tastes and dietary requirements.

Training baristas on excellent texture and flavor with plant-based milk alternatives ensures customer satisfaction. Highlighting plant-based milk offerings on the menu and through marketing efforts can attract health-conscious consumers and capitalize on the growing trend.

Functional coffee additions for health-conscious consumers
Functional coffee beverages are gaining traction, with customers seeking added health benefits with their daily caffeine fix. Coffee businesses can offer collagen-infused coffee options to cater to consumers looking for benefits such as improved skin elasticity and joint health.

Incorporating adaptogenic ingredients such as mushrooms and ashwagandha in specialty coffee drinks can appeal to customers seeking stress reduction and cognitive benefits. Experimenting with medium-chain triglyceride (MCT) oil infusions in coffee beverages can provide health-focused customers with a potential sustained-energy option.

Coffee cocktails: An exciting fusion of caffeine and alcohol
Coffee-based cocktails offer an innovative way to attract customers to coffee and alcohol. Coffee businesses can elevate the classic espresso martini with high-quality espresso, premium liquors, and inventive flavor combinations to create an enticing menu option.

Experimenting with house-made coffee-infused liqueurs to add depth and flavor to various cocktails and beverage experiences. Collaborating with baristas and mixologists to develop innovative coffee-based cocktails, such as Old Fashioneds or coffee and bourbon milk punches, can pique customer interest and differentiate the bar program.

By embracing the latest coffee trends and catering to evolving consumer preferences, coffee businesses can position themselves at the cutting edge of industry innovation and deliver delightful experiences to discerning coffee enthusiasts.

Incorporating specialty coffee offerings, cold brew and nitro coffee options, plant-based milk alternatives, functional additions, and coffee-based cocktails can help businesses stay competitive and innovative and deliver unforgettable experiences.

Successfully capitalizing on these coffee trends will ensure businesses remain relevant and thrive in an increasingly competitive and fast-paced industry. Contact Tastewise to learn more about our food and beverage intelligence software.

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