Coffee and You. A POLL.

Thanks to all of you who have been ordering Mystic Monk Coffee and Tea from the Carmelites in Wyoming.  You are helping them build their new monastery and put groceries on the table.  You are also helping me put groceries on the table.  Keep that coffee supply refreshed!

When people put in orders using my link I can see what is being ordered.  I have no idea who you are, of course.  I just see that someone, somewhere, ordered up, for example, “Hermits Bold Blend“.

However, lately I have noticed a sharp up-tick in monthly subscriptions (cheaper) orders of flavored coffees.  High on the list would be Pumpkin Spice, Cinnamon Coffee Cake, and Royal Rum Pecan. They all sound rather seasonal and desserty, don’t they?

This make me curious.

I am a very strong black coffee type.  Right now I am working through 5 lbs of Dark Sumatra. I will have a cappuccino once in a while or caffè corretto.  Flavored?  Never.

What about you?

Here is a WDTPRS POLL.  Choose your best answer and give your reasons in the com box.

About "flavored" coffee.

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
This entry was posted in Lighter fare, POLLS and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.


  1. Beau says:

    It’s not really the flavor, it’s the aroma. I drink flavored coffee, but I still drink it black (sugar, cream…blech). I’m not opposed to non-flavored coffee, but again I prefer some kind of richer smelling brew.

    Your run of the mill grocery store brands are only good for keeping your caffeine to blood ratio at appropriate levels.

  2. MattnSue says:

    I am guilty here of mixing the rites. My first (wake up) cup is always unflavored, dark, & strong, with some sweetener, no cream, around 7:30-8 a.m. 2nd one (around tenish) is usually a flavored lighter or medium blend, maybe a french vanilla or chocolate flavor. If there is an afternoon cup, it’s decaf and flavored. Herbal tea between three and four.

  3. Nathan says:

    I’m a black coffee drinker, and I find flavored coffee abhorrent. It takes the perfectly good flavor of coffee and makes the whole thing seem anemic. I have noticed that a lot of the fans of flavored coffee, though, always use cream and sugar. Perhaps the added flavor is fuller when you sweeten it up a bit.

    IMO, flavored coffee is indeed a crime against nature, but perhaps not as much of a crime as Starbucks burning the daylights out of perfectly innocent coffee beans.

    In Christ,

  4. tealady24 says:

    Mystic Monk coffee is fabulous, and I buy it all the time! The monastery they will be erecting is out-of-this-world. I guess that’s what it’s supposed to be. Look for me there when it’s finished! I thank God every day for Carmelites; I do believe they and other religious are what keep God from blowing up this earth.

  5. priests wife says:

    hmm….coffee. Now, I feel too guilty to drink it- read the post at She’s a mother of 11 who was left with nothing after her husband decided to not be a dad anymore. The latest post has her giving up coffee as a way to furthur save the little money she has. I don’t want to be an internet ‘stalker’- but I probably should figure out her address and send her some coffee

  6. Mm – Black coffee (no sugar). Occasionally being “daring” and putting some hazelnut essence into it for a little twist. : )

  7. Elizabeth D says:

    I drink instant folger’s, black and lukewarm, one cup per day (often divided between morning and afternoon dose) for wakefulness. I do not enjoy the taste, blech. On Fridays I abstain as a penance, which makes it more difficult to function. On Sundays and feast days I have some milk and sugar or hot cocoa mix in my coffee which improves it quite a lot. During Christmas or Easter season I might buy some bottled hazelnut creamer (I am not claiming this is gourmet or that it is as good as nice brewed coffee, but compared with black folger’s it is very nice).

    I used to enjoy coffeehouse drinks and certainly good coffee, regular or flavored is delicious. But it doesn’t make sense to me now to spend the money and not consistent with my fasting and prayer life except on a special occasion with friends.

  8. jbas says:

    I voted “tea..herbal..”, but just want to object to elegant tea being included in the same category as silly herbal drinks.

  9. Lucas says:

    I love me a cup of Royal Rum Pecan from the Monks. Midnight Vigils is great as well.

    I have no problem with flavored coffees and as another poster said, they smell outstanding. (As does regular coffee)

  10. benedetta says:

    We like their black coffees but an order of Cinnamon Coffee Cake, in decaff, is a great idea.

  11. lucy says:

    Now, now, all you good people of faith who say that only black coffee will do. Blah. God made us all different and we all like different things. Otherwise the world would be boring. That said, I like coffee any way it comes. I prefer Mystic Monk Royal Rum Pecan every day of the year. I find that most of our company for dinner loves it also. Don’t judge us flavored varieties too harshly.

  12. lu3777 says:

    How about “I have 7 children, so if it has caffeine in it, please give me an IV of it”. I’ll bet that would get a lot of votes.

  13. albinus1 says:

    I drink coffee because I like the taste of coffee.

    In my experience, the flavorings added to coffee and tea are like those added to pipe tobacco: they tend to enhance the aroma for those nearby much more than for the person actually consuming it.

  14. Elizabeth R says:

    My daughter and son-in-law introduced me to Mystic Monk’s Jingle Bell Java, which made me a flavored coffee convert. Plain black is still my daily dose, though.

    Jingle Bell Java is only available in Advent and Christmas and – under the name Pascha Java – at Easter.

  15. KAS says:

    I love a good strong coffee with cream and sweetener. I love to drink it in the morning. I love to drink it when I am emotionally down. I find myself holding the mug in my cupped hands, inhaling the aroma and thanking God for making such a marvelous beverage– and I can get almost exactly the same charge out of decaf as regular.

    If I have clean water and coffee (with cream and sweetener) I have all the beverages I must have– if I can add hot cocoa to the list of beverages life is indeed marvelous.

    As for flavors, well, I guess if I had some peppermint and cocoa to add to my coffee on occasion, then I can enjoy my favorite tastes of Christmastime together.


  16. Flambeaux says:

    I was not a fan of flavored coffees until I tried the monks’ Royal Rum Pecan. That is now our house’s staple coffee.
    I tend to prefer French Roast blended with chicory, which is what I grew up drinking in New Orleans.

    But the monks have won me over to the drinking of flavored coffee. I owe it all to you, Fr.Z.

  17. Jaybirdnbham says:

    I voted for flavored coffee some of the time. Coffee smells wonderful as it’s perking, but the taste of black coffee makes me grimace, no matter how freshly brewed. I’ve always doctored my coffee with cream and sugar, so the addition of various flavors to the coffee is also an improvement. And in fact I often sprinkle some cinnamon onto the ground coffee in the basket just before brewing it, to give a nice flavor to it.

  18. mvhcpa says:

    Y’all can keep the burnt bean juice–I take my caffeine and sugar injection via Atlanta’s finest beverage, Coca-Cola.

  19. Cephas218 says:

    Coffee is the flavor! I let a hundred drops or so of milk into my blackness, but I believe that all other flavors are to coffee drinkers what mortal sins are to Catholics.

  20. Tina in Ashburn says:

    I haven’t tried the Mystic Monk flavored coffees, but to date, I have never had a flavored coffee that didn’t have a bitter sub-taste to it. Ironic that I taste that, yet prefer really strong coffee.

    I prefer French Roast with milk and Stevia [de-bittered]. I make my coffee so kidney-blowing strong that visitors have been known to go to the sink and add water to their cup. Wimps.

  21. Random Friar says:

    I don’t like or drink “coffee” much, save for a decaf once in a while. I love and deink espresso, with a little sweetener. If I’m invited to a restaurant, and it’s late, I ask for decaf espresso, which sure makes for some curious looks. Why, I don’t know.

  22. Paulo says:

    Black coffee, about half a mug for me, half a mug for my wife, at 8 AM. I use a small stove-top “caffettiere” from Bialetti, and prefer 100 % arabica beans, medium roast.

  23. Nathan says:

    The Carmelite Monks’ Midnight Vigils Blend, made in a french press, is seriously yummy, especially in the morning.

  24. pfreddys says:

    Flavored coffee is actually a communist plot!

  25. ReginaMarie says:

    @priests wife: I read that at 11 on my own & was thinking the same thing.
    @lu3777: We’re blessed with 6 & the caffeine IV would get my vote, too, though I do enjoy the taste.
    @albinus1 & cephas218: Agreed, my favorite flavor of coffee is…coffee (though some cardamom makes for a tasty Turkish-style coffee).

    How about that news piece today claiming that women who drink coffee are less likely to be depressed? And iced coffee…so good! Almost getting too chilly here for that, though. I suspect my high caffeine & low any-other-liquid habit is playing tricks on my heart. If only other ways of hydrating were as pleasant as coffee…

  26. contrarian says:

    During my college days, I worked in a hipster cafe. Nothing ruins expensive coffee makers quite like loading it with flavored coffee. It can leave even the best of makers with tinge of whatever horrible stuff was inserted into the flavored coffee to make so, thus tainting future batches of the good and right black stuff forever (or at least long) afterwards.

    I’m glad you worded the poll question (‘crime against nature’) as strongly as you did. Black, unflavored coffee, as Christ intended, is what the virtuous man drinks. Cepha218 wrotes, “I believe that all other flavors are to coffee drinkers what mortal sins are to Catholics.” Very nice thought, but I don’t think we need the mutatis mutandis distinction here. :)

  27. Scott W. says:

    My expertise is in pipe tobacco rather than coffee, but I notice alot of similarities between the two in terms of how aroma, strength, preparation & preservation etc., works. Every now and then a piper will get kindof snooty about not smoking aromatics (flavored) and only smoking “uncased” or “untopped” tobacco. Well, a noted tobacconist recently posted on his site that all tobacco is treated to some degree. I wonder if it is similar to coffee.

  28. Jason says:

    I have never drunk coffee (hope I got that verb right). My mom didn’t give it to us as kids. I used to watch my folks get up in the morning and they were absolute zombies until they got some coffee in them. They seemed to me to be literally different people. When I got old enough to decide for myself, I decided to leave that beverage alone.

    Once at work I was doing something important that I needed to get done and I started to get a little droopy in the late afternoon. Somebody suggested that I drink a cup of coffee. I drank two. I got absolutely wired for a few hours and then crashed. I felt terrible for two days. I suppose it was a caffeine hangover? That was my first and last experiment with coffee.

  29. LaudemGloriae says:

    I worked a coffee shop in college slinging capuccino … we were told that roasters save the inferior beans for “flavored blends”. They are just sprayed with a flavored oil. If you want a flavored coffee, the better route is through flavored syrups which is what you will see in places like Starbucks – high quality bean and roasting with syrups added after brewing.

    I mean you wouldn’t make ground beef out of fillet mignon.

    Working that coffee shop was perhaps my favorite job … simple pleasures … and free espresso.

  30. Jayna says:

    How about unflavored coffee and flavored coffee creamer? I do so love my holiday flavors.

  31. APX says:

    I prefer the stronger darker bolder blends, but I have a weak spot for caramel chocolate dark roast every now and then. Mmm…delicious.

  32. Slappo says:

    I like my coffee for the same reasons I like my wife: It’s strong, bold, keeps me on my feet, and doesn’t let me fall asleep at mass! Aromatic coffee’s don’t quite have the same punch in the face experience as a nice dark blend.

  33. Slappo says:

    I should add… there are other reasons I like (well… love of course!) my wife… her similarities to a hot cup of coffee is just the frosting on top of the cake :)

  34. pm125 says:

    I am Brkfst Blend, who would order Mystic Monk Blend. Morning, afternoon, and evening (when I have something good to dunk in the interest of falling asleep).
    With milk only. I carry a little container of milk to protect myself from a half and half or 1% milk world and could go on about that form of misery.
    Sometimes, I wish I were an herbal tea drinker.

  35. markomalley says:

    The only way to flavor coffee is with Bailey’s Irish Creme…after the coffee is brewed.



    End of Story.

    Futile attempts to flavor the beans (or the ground coffee) is a crime against nature that should have immediate and lasting penalties to an individual attempting such a thing. I’m thinking something along the lines of Chinese Water Torture, dripping the abominable substance on the individual’s forehead.

  36. Rev Mr Flapatap says:

    My family used to grow coffee in Puerto Rico for many years (Pius XII used to drink coffee from our family farm) and, I guess, I am a purist. I dislike flavored coffee, not only because it messes up the true flavor, but because the advertised flavors taste fake. Unfortunately, the first time I bought a pound of Mystic Monk coffee it turned out to be flavored but there was no label indicating so.

  37. Southern Baron says:

    I take it occasionally, usually if there is a hazelnut option. I do not like French Vanilla coffee, I’d rather use a flavored creamer in that case, but typically, I just drink a dark roast with cream and a small spoon of sugar. But that’s only at regular run-of-the-mill coffee shops. As a New Orleanian, I prefer to go for the cafe au lait, with very, very dark roast and chicory, and half steamed milk. I make this at home when I have the chicory, or a can from Cafe du Monde.

  38. pablo says:

    Some friends of mine used to hear strange noises in their home late at night.

    They would see dark shadows moving about.

    They heard moaning.

    Then one day they ran out of coffee flavoring (I think the Hazelnut Vanilla Peppermint was the first to run out), and noticed later that night the strange things stopped happening.

    Flavor your coffee, strange things happen.


  39. Sarah H says:

    I never liked flavoured coffee until I tried some of the varieties the Mystic Monks make. They don’t have the harsh aftertaste that other flavoured coffees do, and the aroma is just mmmmmmmmmm. I’m particularly fond of their Hazelnut.

  40. dep says:

    nothing in the coffee. hot and black (though on very hot summer days it may be cold and black, if the ice cubes are themselves made of coffee). anything else is sangria at mass.

  41. JaneC says:

    When I first drank coffee I often drank frou-frou concoctions. I have now learned to drink it without the sweet stuff. But even when I regularly drank things inundated with flavored sugar syrups, I never liked flavored coffee beans until I had Mystic Monk Pascha Java, which I LOVE. I can hardly wait to order its Christmas counterpart. Mostly, though, it’s plain coffee with milk for me. I only put sugar in it when it’s brewed by my parents, whose coffee tends to more closely resemble tar than anything drinkable ought to.

  42. lux_perpetua says:

    reading these comments was seriously penitential. due to health issues, i’ve been off the juice for one solid month now. i was a three-quarters-of-a-pot-daily, unadulterated-black-goodness variety. so let me tell you, those first 4 days… boy did i have a lot of physical pain and sleepiness to offer up. i’m salivating like crazy now, just waiting for the next 2.5 weeks to fly by so i can hop back on the wagon.

    some comments, those who have mentioned flavors in flavored coffee being more in the aroma than the actual taste–a lot of this also has to do with the brewing methods, as drip makers tend to burn the living daylights out of the coffee you’re making anyway. but, as most have stated, adding flavors after the fact is pretty much the way to go, if you’re going to dumb down your caffeine catechisis, that is.

    @TheLicenseFool, i like your idea of using essences. i’ll need to try that sometime. i also like the idea of a peppermint/cocoa combo. this way i can give my guests the frufruness they desire without needing to invest in some beans to have on hand for desserty needs of my guests.

    @dep: making ice cubes of coffee. mmm brilliant!

    @slappo: your comment made me laugh out loud. i can only hope and pray i will be that sort of wife someday

  43. JohnE says:

    I like my “hot chocolate” with a tinge of bitterness. Flavored coffee for me. I was never much of a coffee fan until I had Kona coffee in Hawaii. Now I drink it every day except during Lent.

  44. Robert_H says:

    We (I, mostly) drink hazelnut flavored, Eight O’clock brand most of the time & Mystic Monk of any sort when we can afford it. Always with cream & sugar, both because I genuinely prefer the sweeter taste (I like my ice tea sweetened, too) but also because I have great memories of adding cream & sugar to my grandfather’s after-dinner cup of coffee. (My brother and sister and I had a scheduled rotation of who got to do the honors, to keep the bickering down.)

    @Elizabeth D
    You said:

    I drink instant folger’s, black and lukewarm … [snip] I do not enjoy the taste, blech. On Fridays I abstain as a penance…

    I’d consider drinking Instant Folgers, in any form, penance enough. Talk about mortifying the flesh!

  45. MJ says:

    Someone mentioned Kona coffee from Hawaii!? Oh_my_goodness, best stuff EVER! I don’t like drinking coffee black and unsweetened, but that stuff you sure can!

    Otherwise, I have to say I’m one of the ones who chose the ‘Yes I stick to flavored and prefer it to unflavored’. I do drink unflavored, but I would rather have French Vanilla or Hazelnut (yum).

  46. Mitchell NY says:

    I take my coffee very light, no sugar, aware that the more milk, the less staining on the teeth. Recently I started adding a bit of the Fat Free French Vanilla. One day they were out of it so I just got my coffee as I used to and realized it tastes somewhat flat without the flavor and I did not look forward to it. It wasn’t the Ahhhhhhhhhh finally, coffee moment that I usually have since adding a bit of flavor.

  47. p2rp says:

    I don’t care much for flavored coffee or flavored coffee creamers. I like bold coffee with plain liquid creamer and sugar. I used to grind coffee beans and brew in drip coffee maker. Now I have a Keurig machine which I love to the point of worrying about inordinate attachment. K-cups are expensive and a pain to keep in supply but they make great coffee. I dearly wish Mystic Monk coffee produced k-cups in an extra bold variety.

  48. JMody says:

    @ Nathan in re Starbucks and their reduction to ash of what might be otherwise serviceable coffee beans — HEAR!HEAR!

    The “crime” of flavored coffee is that it is almost always done with some hideous flavored oil, that is then infused into the brewing device and pollutes “normal” coffee afterwards. The crime DOES affect others, so it is NOT “just my choice affecting nobody else”, just like so many other abhorrent affronts to nature that we are called on to accept!

  49. DavidMiller says:

    Flavored coffee gives me heartburn.

  50. oblomov says:

    Coffee, strong, hot and black. Two or three cups, generally in the AM. Occasionally a bit of real cream for a treat, flavored coffee’s once in a very great while. Generally don’t like flavored coffees but occasionally I will enjoy a cup of say Mystic Monk French Vanilla. Otherwise it’s mystic monk blend or midnight vigils for me.

  51. I like a dark roast with cream and sugar. I will occasionally add something like Irish cream or whiskey or another liquer. But never flavored blah creamers. And no flavored coffee. It’s all aroma.

Comments are closed.