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Hi there! I am most often found in the pastry section, but i have a small chocolate shop in iowa and am having a hard time coping with what to offer in the summer. besides chocolates and desserts we offer a small traditional coffee bar menu (white, dk choc and caramel for hot or cold lattes) (capps, americano, red eye, mighty leaf teas, brewed coffee, chai, "real" hot chocolate and a blended hot chocolate (what we call an arctic chocolate, or frozen hot choc)

well, we don't want to have to get into gelato (or lord, the start up with that!) but thought about going the route of frozen fruit smoothies (no boxed crap) and sadly, my husband thinks frappuccinos are the way to go. do you find that frappuccinos are still "hip" or do you think they are cheesy? to make a frap do you have to buy a powdered mix or whats the big deal with fraps anyway? to do smoothies, we are thinking about going the thermomix route or just getting a blend tec blender...any suggestions are very welcomed!

thanks so much-

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dear chocoeara,

I used to be a waitress at a chocolate bar for 4 years in melbourne and I could not tell you how much I want you to add Frappucino on your menu! The funny thing is, a lot of customers always comes in for a milkshake and I guess that is probably the hip thing in Australia but because we do not have milkshakes in our menu, I always recommend them a Chocolate Frappucino instead. "Frappucino?", 80% of them would usually ask! I normally would just reply " It is similar to milk shakes only that its an ice blended chocolate drink with crunchy ice in them!." And every customers that have tried it always comes back for more! I rarely find a customer, unless if they hate chocolate so much that dislike a chocolate frappucino!

It reminds me of the spider drink that are normally served in tall glasses and rainbow colors and flavors that usually comes with a scoop of ice cream. Spiders are so old school and now if someone were to crave for a childhood drink as thus, there is only one pancake restaurant that sells them in melbourrne. Its a good reminiscing drink that people has always like and if they bring them back in trend again, it will be hit again!

I never find frappucino cheesy and I am pretty sure the 95% of the customers that I have recommended frapuccino to would agree too!

The Frappucinos that was served in the chocolate bar that I worked at used to come in white, milk or dark chocolate. And there is this strawberry float that they make from white chocolate ganache, fresh strawberries and ice blended together. They are sensational! Please, frappucino is awesome!!!!

To make frappucinos are simple! All you need is a strong blender meant for blending iced drinks! And the frappucino that was made from where i used to work use real chocolate ganache with milk and ice, then blend them together! that way its richer and sensational! If you buy the blend tec blender, you can make both smoothies and frappucino!!! :) The big deal about frappucino? Its like drinking a chocolate slurpee!!!!! How can you compare? hehehehe

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Isn't the term Frappucino trademarked by Starbucks? Why not use the term "shakerato" instead? That's what a shaken, sweetened, iced espresso is called in Italy. If you're already brewing coffees, you might want to consider coffee granita, served in a parfait glass layered with whipped cream. No ice cream freezer required...just a bit of scraping as the granita freezes. Like this (see below):

pb0300282.jpg

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According to Wikipedia, frappucino is in fact trademarked by Starbucks <see here>. The generic term frappe (pronounced "frap") is not and could cover a wider array of products.

I like the idea of these on the menu for summer. As for the blender... can you say "VitaPrep"?

Steve Lebowitz

Doer of All Things

Steven Howard Confections

Slicing a warm slab of bacon is a lot like giving a ferret a shave. No matter how careful you are, somebody's going to get hurt - Alton Brown, "Good Eats"

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wow, good suggestions :) so, majority is, yes :) the granita idea is really great, and could be put on a rotating prep schedule so we always have some frozen, because isn't the key with granita is to freeze only a couple hrs till pretty much frozen, but not super frozen through? then you scrape and then could you just keep in the freezer? is that how that would work?

as for the passion/strawberry frap, that sounds awesome!!!!!!!!!!!! i'm assuming you have a pretty loose ganache as a base? 1:1 maybe? and just keep in the fridge with a scoop for the drink?

but wow, thanks so much. i was really on the fence with this, but it seems that a cold blended drink is "way in" and if you don't mind, i really like that shakerato term....mind if put that idea on the menu? :) and would that be pronounced "shAke- er- Atoh? or shAke- er- ahtoh?" unfortunately i'm very not foreign, exotic or mysterious, so i should probably pronounce it right :P

and with the vitamix...is that better than a blend tec? anybody have any used ones they know of? or should i probably buy *sigh* full price/new?

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Shakerato is pronounced just as it looks, equal stress on all syllables, sounds like milkshake. But shakerato has a specific meaning: espresso & simple syrup, shaken w/ice, then strained into a glass. Sometimes the glass is drizzled w/chocolate, or the drink gets a tiny float of liqueur. It's not a blender drink. If you repurpose the name, maybe you should display a short description so that people familiar w/the Italian term aren't suprised by a different drink after ordering.

I make coffee granita by dissolving sugar in hot espresso, then pouring the coffee into a shallow dish & sticking it in the freezer. Scrape the sides & bottom of the dish every 10-15 minutes or as needed depending on how fast the mixture freezes. Scraped, fluffy granita keeps for a few days, you'll just need to re-scrape to fluff it up. I prefer a drier, more frozen granita rather than a liquidy one. Note: some chain coffee shops use a self-stirring machine to dispense a coffee-flavored Icee or Squishee type frozen drink...clearly NOT the granita to which I'm referring.

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