How to barista
better with Sproud
We’ve come a long way since the days when you could only find plant m*lks in specialist, patchouli-scented stores, or gathering dust in supermarket free-from sections. Now, more than 60% of UK households buy plant m*lks, and a fifth of all milk purchases in the US are plant-based.
Partly that’s because we’re all more switched on to just how damaging dairy is to the environment (Sproud only emits a sixth of the greenhouse gases of cow’s milk, fyi). But it’s also because plant m*lks got better – tastier, creamier and, crucially, delicious in coffee.
In fact, rather than being just a dairy alternative, Sproud Barista is crafted to make coffee taste even better than dairy. And where other plant m*lks curdle when they hit the acidity of a Marsellesa, or swamp the delicate notes of a Geisha with sweetness, Sproud Barista holds its microfoam and highlights the natural aromatics in your beans. That makes it perfect for latte artists, as well as anyone who wants their coffee to taste like, well, coffee.
You don’t even need to tweak your techniques. The way we blend our pea extracts and oils creates a plant-based m*lk that behaves just like dairy under a steam wand. The proteins denature slightly to encase the air, forming bubbles that give microfoam its sweetness, while the fats create that glossy texture and mouthfeel. But just like dairy, there are a few tricks – which we’ve figured out through exhaustive testing with some of the world’s best baristas – that will get you the perfect cup of coffee, every time.
1. Chill out
Even though unopened Sproud doesn’t need refrigerating (just one thing that makes it the most sustainable plant m*lk around), the colder you get it, the better your foam. It’s all about time. You want to get your milk to around 57ºC – any higher and the proteins will completely break down, but much colder and you’ll sacrifice sweetness and mouthfeel. Starting with chilly milk means it takes longer to hit that magic number, so there’s a bigger window to get as much air in as possible. And more air means more delicious, silky bubbles.
Pro tip – keep your milk jugs in the fridge, too, or rinse with cold water before every steam.
2. Shake things up
Sproud is a blend of fresh water, pea proteins, heart-healthy oils and our bespoke vitamin and mineral blend. If it’s been sitting in your store room for a while, or in the fridge overnight, those ingredients can separate slightly.
The fix? Give it a quick shake before every pour.
3. Steam it like dairy
We spent a lot of time crafting Sproud to behave just like dairy, so you don’t need to change the fundamentals. Just remember to stay below 57ºC, and don’t resteam. The natural sugars can caramelise, which can create a burnt or bitter taste that doesn’t play nice with lighter roasts.
4. Get high
Latte artists, put your hands up. Just like dairy, the more distance you get between jug and cup, the more chance your silky Sproud will pierce the espresso’s crema without disturbing it. Start slow, then get closer when you cup’s about half full, to ensure a blank canvas for your artistic creations.
5. Sip and savour
Pour complete, you’re ready to enjoy. So take your time. Sproud Barista is crafted to highlight coffee’s natural notes, and that starts before you take a sip. Floral, herbal and fruity molecules come through in the aroma, and give great coffee its brightness. When you do take the first sip, give it time to swirl around your tongue. Sproud accentuates all coffee’s complex flavour compounds, which means whether you’re drinking a Brazilian Catuaí or a Guatemalan Caturra, it’s going to taste exactly like what it is – great coffee.
Be a greener barista with Sproud
The coffee industry has long been a leader in social and environmental sustainability, from support for independent growers to leading the charge towards plant m*lks. And for good reason. Climate change is already putting coffee farmers at risk, and rising temperatures could mean we lose 50% of coffee-growing land by 2050.
To help cut your own carbon footprints, we spoke to some of our favourite – and greenest – baristas and cafés for tips on how to cut waste, reduce emissions and make every flat white a little bit greener.
1. Mind your milk
Arguably the biggest change we can make as individuals is cutting animal-based products out of our diet. The food industry is responsible for around a third of global carbon emissions, with dairy alone producing almost double the greenhouse gases of aviation. Sproud is far more sustainable, but still does everything dairy does under a steam wand, which is why some of the world’s best baristas think it’s even better with coffee than cow’s milk.
It’s not just about what’s in your milk jug, though – also think about what goes down the drain. Spend a day decanting excess milk into a container to see how much you’d normally throw away. As well as money, it means more resources down the drain, rather than in your customer cups. Keeping tabs will help you cut waste and make sure staff develop a better sense of quantities.
If you’re still not seeing any improvement, an automatic dispenser of foamer can reduce waste and get coffees out quicker. We’re big fans of Ubermilk.
2. Do your research
If you care about coffee, you should investigate how it’s grown as much as what it tastes like. Buy from brands with clear sustainability policies, that value transparency and traceability, and which respect all the people involved in the coffee chain, from farm to cup.
Once your delicious, sustainable beans are in the grinder, it’s all about precision. Dialling-in properly, and weighing the coffee before each shot (most modern grinders will do that job for you) cuts waste and improves quality.
3. Flush little and often
To ensure every customer gets a perfectly poured espresso, you need to flush between each shot. Don’t just hit the single-shot button – to get rid of residue, you only need a few seconds of water. It might not sound much, but over a month you’ll save litres of water.
4. Power down when possible
Keeping your espresso machine at full temperature all the time burns energy and money. Get familiar with your ‘stand by’ button, which keeps the machine on but switches off the group heads. If possible, programme your machine to power down after the evening clean, and start heating up as you open the door the next morning.
5. Reduce, re-use, recycle
Whether you’re advising on the right grind for home brewing, or recommending your favourite new bag of beans, customers trust what their baristas tell them. Use that influence to nudge them towards more sustainable choices, be that reusable cups or swapping dairy for plant m*lk. If you can convince even one person a day to make greener decisions, it adds up to a huge environmental saving over time.
Doing better for the planet and doing better for the coffee industry is at the core of our business. Join our social community and tell us how else you’re making coffee greener.
Learn from expert baristas on how to make the perfect cup of coffee with Sproud’s
plant-based m*lk. Our tips and tricks cover everything from selecting the right
beans to achieving the perfect texture and temperature.
GET THE MOST OUT
OF YOUR SPROUD
REMOVE RING PULL,
REPLACE LID AND
DO NOT HEAT
DO NOT RE-STEAM