Bulletproof coffee has been slowly bubbling up in the same types of health-crazed West Coast circles that first embraced the paleo diet and juice cleanses. The basic concept behind it—taking coffee and mixing it with unsalted butter and oil—comes from, according to the movement’s guru Dave Asprey, the buttered tea made by sherpas guiding hikers in the Himalayas.
Yes, it sounds kind of repulsive. But Asprey claims that since starting his day with the concoction, he’s lost 100 pounds and boosted his IQ without exercise or getting a full 8 hours of sleep.
Others who try it tend to fall into one of two camps: zealous fans who say the mixture has transformed them into super-athletes, and people who just end up with extreme diarrhea.
Now you, too, can discover which end of the spectrum you fall onto—it’s officially on the menu at the coffee bar at Beatrix (519 N. Clark St., River North, 312-284-1377). I went today to sample a cup, praying it would make me superhuman instead of sick.
Beatrix uses a low-toxin coffee, brewed pourover-style then mixed with unsalted grassfed butter and coconut oil. The thing takes a while to make—my food arrived before my coffee did.
I worried it would just taste like straight butter, the thought of which made me want to pre-emptively hurl. But instead, it was like a perfectly sweetened and super-rich full-fat latte, with no residual bitterness. It went down easily and quickly, and I finished lunch feeling more full than a person who’s eaten a proteinless kale salad has any right to.
But, then again, this satiety cost me $8.95. For a normal-sized coffee mug.
One quibble (aside from the borderline insane price tag): Thanks to all the fat, the caffeine kick is more of a slow release than I’m used to, and I did feel a stretch of post-meal fogginess. I also registered a couple of uncertain stomach rumblings. But, an hour or so later, I feel ready to be actually productive on a sunny Friday afternoon—and that’s a rare thing.
Superpowers come at a price.