Latte foam art has come a long way from those wide-eyed days when a barista could impress you with a simple heart. Now, foam art can come in a multitude of colors or even dimensions! And just recently, one of the biggest trends in foam art arrived in Europe for the first time. The Tea Terrace in London just became the first coffee shop on the continent to serve a “Selfieccino”—cappuccinos topped off with a foam image of the drinker’s face.
These Selfieccinos—a name The Tea Terrace says it coined and hopes to trademark— come courtesy of a machine called the “Cino.” This digitally-connected device is able to print any image onto the froth of either a cappuccino or hot chocolate using a flavorless brown food coloring. Customers simply message The Tea Terrace with their image of choice (preferably a selfie it would seem) and the shop and Cino handle things from there. The process reportedly takes about four minutes and The Tea Terrace charges £5.75 (or about $7.50) for the resulting beverage.
"Due to social media, the dining experience has completely shifted," Ehab Salem Shouly, owner of The Tea Terrace told Reuters. “It’s not enough anymore to just deliver great food and great service—it’s got to be Instagram worthy.” Apparently, that strategy is working as Shouly says he’s sold hundreds of the selfie drinks since debuting the Cino system on Saturday. He says he hopes to have the machine in his other two locations at some point in the future.
Though the idea of printing photos on latte foam isn’t new—a similar device was being hyped back in 2015—the concept is clearly novel enough to spark plenty of interest… and the catchy “Selfieccino” name doesn’t hurt. On Instagram, the hashtag #selfieccino currently has about 50 posts, many of them taken at The Tea Terrace over the past five days or so. However, one post is especially troubling: A young man having his photo taken while holding his Selfieccino. What if someone takes that image and has it printed on a cappuccino. Couldn’t that create a tear in the coffee-time continuum? Who knew latte art would be the medium that destroyed the universe as we know it?!