Espresso Royale introduces new nitro coffee machine


Adam Zhang

Students walk in front of Espresso Royale, located at 1117 W. Oregon St. in Urbana. This location, along with Starbucks on Green Street, will close its doors in the next month.

By Niani Scott, Staff Writer

Across campus, Espresso Royale has introduced a new nitro cold brew coffee right after spring break that is said to be creamier in taste.

The nitrogen-infused coffee is charged at slightly more than $4 for a small while a normal coffee is around $2 at Espresso Royale. However, some students say it is worth the higher price. 

The nitro cold brew started as a trend in the summer of 2015, according to Esquire, and has become even more popular since.

Espresso Royale uses a machine that takes nitrogen from the air to infuse the coffee. 

“The machine itself is magic. Normally you would need a kegerator and nitrogen tanks and running lines, which we were going to do; but I guess corporate found this machine, the Brewista,” Adam Barnett, Espresso Royale manager at the Daniel street location, said. “We were all very skeptical about it taking nitrogen from the air, but it does.”

Barnett compared the nitro cold brew coffee to beer on tap, saying the cold brew coffee is frothy.

“I like it. Some people really hate it, but it tastes like a coffee Guinness. It has a stout flavor,” Patrick Connery, sophomore in Business and Espresso Royale barista, said. “Some people are really grossed out by it, but I dig it.”

Connery said the nitro cold brew is like carbonated water, but it’s using nitrogen instead of carbon dioxide. He described the nitro cold brew as a soda-like coffee.

There are five different nitro cold brew flavors at Espresso Royale locations on campus. The Grasshopper, which is a mix of chocolate and mint flavors, is the most popular flavor at the undergraduate library location, Connery said. The UGL Espresso Royale employees describe it as having a thin mint flavor.

The Daniel street location, however, said the creamy vanilla is their most popular flavor.

“That one’s good. That one’s dangerous. I could drink that so quickly,” Connery said. “I don’t like straight black coffee, but I can drink (the creamy vanilla nitro cold brew) straight.”

Barnett said nitrogen cold brew coffee has a different flavor than the regular Espresso Royale cold brew.

“In general it cuts out a lot of the bitterness,” Barnett said. “I think it tastes a little stronger than our cold brew, which I really like. We have a few regulars who have started getting nitro instead of cold brew.”

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