Name: Blue latte.
Age: Less than a week old.
What on earth goes into a latte to make it blue? Ginger, lemon, coconut milk, agave and blue algae powder.
That sounds a bit experimental. Its very popular. The blue latte was only introduced at Melbournes vegan Matcha Mylkbar last Saturday, and theyve already sold more than 100 of them, at A$8 (£4.60) each.
Nearly a fiver for a coffee? Well, no, not exactly. Coffee is not among the listed ingredients of the blue latte.
What? How can you charge nearly a fiver for a latte with no actual coffee in it? Its down to the blue algae, which costs as much as $3 a gram and is said to have powerful antioxidant properties. Customers cant get enough of it.
For that money, it must taste fantastic. €œIt has a strong seaweed-type smell,€ says someone who has tried it. According to staff at Matcha Mylkbar, its reminiscent of sour milk, with a tart aftertaste.
A hugely expensive blue coffee that tastes terrible and contains no caffeine. Why do people keep coming back? Because the blue latte is, in beverage terms, eminently Instagram-able.
What does that even mean? It means that many customers appear to be ordering the blue latte so they can post pictures of it on Instagram.
As in: €œCheck out this disgusting blue drink they sell in Australia€? Australia has long been a trailblazer when it comes to coffee culture. The country isnt in thrall to big chains such as Starbucks, and independent craft coffee brewers have introduced a lot of innovation.
They must be among the first to remove coffee from the equation. The flat white, for example, is an Australian invention.
And they must be at the absolute forefront when it comes to charging. If youre budget-conscious, Matcha Mylkbar also do a beetroot latte for just $5.
No thank you. They also have a mushroom latte for $7, if your wallet will stretch to it.
Are you sure they arent just selling soup by the glass? Not entirely, no.
Do say: €œLarge blue please, mate €“ not too much ginger, extra algae and four sugars.€
Dont say: €œIts that colour because we add a touch of antifreeze, which has powerful anti-freezing properties.€