Sweet holiday treats

With the holidays in full swing, many are finding the best way to celebrate is to grab some holiday cheer at the local coffee and tea shops, sipping on peppermint while fulfilling their holiday traditions.

“The taste and the smell, it kind of takes you back to when you were a kid and you didn’t have to worry about anything,” said George Gaston, 39, of Marietta.

Many of the shops in Marietta are putting up their holiday menus much to the delight of their customers.

“We have a red velvet, and that’s really popular right now, as well as the gingerbread latte and the eggnog latte,” said Liz Johnson, co-owner of Jeremiah’s Coffee House. “I would say the classic gingerbread is the most popular, but many people are starting to go towards the eggnog and then there are those who are finding we have the holiday blends.”

Johnson said they offer snickerdoodle, caramel nut, creme brulee blends and more.

“We can grind it for you or you can take the whole bean and grind it your way,” she said.

Courtney Knoch, owner of Silver Linings, said for the first time in her shop she’s offering holiday drinks to put a pep in her customers’ steps.

“I have peppermint tea, which I’m pushing more this holiday season; it tastes awesome,” said Knoch. “I have hot chocolate and peppermint hot chocolate as well.”

Knoch said she serves her hot chocolate with a candy cane and her holiday drinks seem to be a hit.

“It’s actually been pretty awesome so far; I have a sitting area and a fireplace,” she said. “They come in during their holiday shopping and relax with their drinks.”

At Stoked Coffee, Jewel Hummerich, store manager, said they have a variety of drinks during the holiday season.

“The one we are really featuring right now during the holidays is the frosted cookie white mocha,” said Hummerich. “It has hazelnut, English toffee and white chocolate in it.”

She said they have anything from gingerbread to peppermint, including the Mistletoe Kiss, a raspberry lemon and creme de menthe coffee.

“We do have eggnog over the holiday as well,” she explained, noting they can make eggnog lattes for those who wish to have eggnog with their coffee.

She said they usually try to create a new drink every year, but this year they didn’t because the frosted cookie white mocha is still a newer drink.

“This year we didn’t (create a new drink) because the frosted cookie white mocha was brand new last year so we are featuring it again,” she said. “We already have so many great options it’s hard to think of something new that is going to taste good.”

Additionally, they have released their holiday stickers that are popular amongst the customers who often request extra stickers on their cups.

“It’s kind of the telltale sign that it’s the holiday season when there is a holiday sticker on your cup at Stoked Coffee,” said Hummerich.

Kevin King, 64, of Houston, Texas, and Tim Rullo, 35, of Pittsburgh, Pa., who both travel to Marietta often for work, said they always make it a point to stop by Stoked to try their coffee, especially around the holiday season.

“(The holiday drinks) along with the music just gets me into the holiday spirit,” said King. “It’s a nice change and it separates it from the rest of the year, from the usual mundane.”

Tim Hortons also has holiday drinks available, including gingerbread iced cappuccino and peppermint hot chocolate.

Johnson said the holiday drinks are important as they really kick start the holiday season.

“I think it puts you in the mood of the spirit of the holiday; you have something as a child and as an adult, you have that same drink and it reminds you of what it was like to be young,” she explained. “The comforting feeling that it gives you makes you happy this time of year and makes you thankful for what you’ve got and look forward to what next year will bring.”

Knoch said the flavors really remind people of the times they spend with their family.

“When you think of a candy cane, you think of peppermint and you think of the time you get to spend with their family; it makes people feel they are at home when they enter my shop,” she said. “They come into Silver Linings and they say, ‘oh my grandpa used to put a candy cane in his hot chocolate when I was little’…it’s nostalgic.”

Rullo noted the holiday drinks are special because they aren’t usually offered throughout the rest of the year.

“When you can’t have them all year round, it makes you want it even more,” he said. “It’s a special time of year and gets people into the mood for the holiday season.”

Holiday drinks

Jeremiah’s Coffee House, 175 Front St.

Drinks

– Eggnog latte.

– Gingerbread latte.

– Hot chocolate.

– Peppermint hot chocolate.

Blends

– Apple pie.

– The holiday blend.

– Snickerdoodle.

– Caramel nut.

– Creme brulee.

Source: Liz Johnson.

Stoked Coffee, 302 Pike St.

– Frosted cookie white mocha.

– Peppermint mocha.

– Peppermint white mocha.

– Mistletoe Kiss.

– Eggnog.

– Hot chocolate.

Source: Jewel Hummerich.

Silver Linings, 108 Front St.

– Peppermint tea.

– Peppermint hot chocolate with candy cane.

– Hot chocolate.

Source: Courtney Knoch.