Flavor Trends, Strategies and Solutions for Menu Development




By Rob Corliss
November 14, 2021

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Elevated coffee experiences trend every year. Operators continuously answer the call with innovative ways to create new flavor iterations. Insert trend-forward Thai tea into a coffee profile and operators have a compelling new flavor story.

Restaurants can artfully merge the distinctive attributes of coffee and Thai tea. Feature the spiced sweetness of Thai tea and its accompaniments as the craveable hook and the lovely acidic-bitter-aromatic qualities of coffee as a background note that pulls the drink together. Messaging can play up a double dose of caffeine appealing to energy seekers, distinctive combinations for indulgence seekers and amazing taste profiles for flavor seekers.

Look to utilizing Thai tea in various forms of hot brewed, chilled, tea leaf infusions or tea syrups. Think of Thai tea as a texture treatment for coffee. Pamper patrons with deliciousness, targeting coffee fanatics.

Here are 10 ideas to build on:

“Try This”


Thai Tea Latte: Hot Thai tea + sweetened condensed milk swirl + espresso shot + frothed evaporated milk

Afterglow Milk Tea: Hot Thai tea + hot light roast coffee + almond milk + star anise + turmeric + cayenne


Iced Dirty Thai: Chilled Thai tea + oat milk + evaporated milk + shot of cold brew coffee concentrate + ice

Thai Cold Brew Frappé: (blended) Thai tea ice cream + cold brew coffee + ice + whipped milk topper + chocolate sprinkles


Dalgona Thai Tea: Evaporated milk/sweetened condensed milk + whipped hot brewed Thai tea/instant coffee/granulated sugar + ice

Pearled Dalgona Thai Tea: Coconut cream + gingered boba + whipped hot brewed Thai tea/instant coffee/light brown sugar + ice


Thai Me Up: Thai tea syrup + dark roast coffee/chicory + sweetened condensed milk + ice

Thai Egg Coffee: Thai tea + espresso + whipped egg yolks/sweetened condensed milk


Stormy Thai Clouds: Thai tea + coffee jelly + evaporated milk swirl

Passion Thai Paleta Java: Thai tea-passionfruit paleta (in coffee cup) + cold brew coffee



These Bacon Burnt End Tacos star bacon slow-cooked in honey, barbecue sauce and chicken stock, topped with a savory-sweet pineapple slaw.Photo credit: Smithfield Culinary

These Bacon Burnt End Tacos star bacon slow-cooked in honey, barbecue sauce and chicken stock, topped with a savory-sweet pineapple slaw.

Get the recipe for Bacon Burnt End Tacos


About The Author

Rob Corliss

Rob Corliss is a three-time James Beard House guest chef with more than 30 years of experience that includes running world-class hotels, launching new concepts, working in top marketing agencies and owning the culinary consultancy ATE (All Things Epicurean) since 2009. Based in Nixa, Mo., ATE has an energizing passion focused on flavor innovation and is dedicated to connecting people to their food, environment and wellness. Rob is also a regular contributor to Flavor & The Menu.