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If changing regular milk for almond in your latte isn’t hipster enough already for you, Small World Coffee’s recent special drink is even crazier concoction. Made for Heart Health Awareness month, “A Shot in the Heart,” is a curious combination of espresso shot, foamed milk, and beetroot juice.

Straight out of the cafés of Melbourne, Australia, the drink is part of Small World’s February specials menu and packs antioxidants and nutrients galore.

Presented in a small tumbler, the mixture has a surprisingly coffee-like color with a slight light pink hue. And, indeed, for the first few sips, the milk foam on top belies any kind of surprise to come. For the first couple of minutes, it’s just like a regular coffee, and one is lulled into a false sense of security. 

Then, it hits you. It’s a bizarre melange of the bitter espresso, a tinge of sweetness from the milk, and the odd flavor of the beetroot. I wasn’t quite sure what to make of it — each sip vacillated between a love for the smooth mixture, an appreciation of the sheer ability to pull off such a crazy combination, and a disgust and general mistrust for the use of beetroot in coffee. I generally disapprove of such misgivings  — the likes of fruit being paired with cake, for example — but could be swayed by its health benefits and its surprisingly hidden tastes to go along for more.

For over $4, it’s a jump up from your ordinary filter coffee, but it did keep me awake for the rest of the afternoon. Those with a less adventurous palate, however, might wish to avail themselves of Small World’s other February special: a flight of artisanal hot chocolates.

This article expresses the views of the author alone, and this content was produced without any influence from Small World Coffee. 

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