Musings on…Coffee

There was a post by Gina over at Lifehacker yesterday about coffee that caught my eye.

How To: Make Better Coffee – Lifehacker
This morning’s cuppa joe a big letdown? Self-described “coffee snob” Brett Kelly says you can make a fabulous cup of coffee for a reasonable price yourself. Kelly’s nuts about making his coffee—the guy uses bottled water and roasts his own beans, people—but he makes a great case for home roasting and grinding. How do you perfect your coffee? Let us know in the comments.

After thinking about it, I had to throw my own thoughts out into the mix. The post was just a quick link, but the comments were much more fun.

Now understand I ain’t no coffee snob. If anything I’m the reverse. I do not understand the siren call of Starbucks that most folks seem to hear. But then my first cup of “mud” was brewed by my Grandfather at the “Ranch” during my first morning visit to the deer stand. Nothing wakes a 14 year old boy up like a hand full of coffee grounds boiled for five minutes in a enamel soup pan on a camp stove. The fact that the cup was half full of grounds as I tried to swallow it down didn’t impress me much either. I don’t think I tried another cup of coffee for a number of years after being introduced to Grandpa’s version at the Ranch.

About the time I started to drive I discovered the coffee at our local Dunkin’. The owner of the shop was the mayor of our little burg of and on for a lot of years. And being about the only place in a town of 100,000 that was open 24 hours a day, it was a pretty popular hangout late at night. Now there was man obsessed with his coffee. Multi thousand dollar water filtration (this was the late ’60’s early 70″s), fresh brewed every 12 minutes (pour it out if it hadn’t been cupped) from fresh ground beans. Now that was probably the best coffee I ever drank (and that includes Starbucks). But it wasn’t the most enjoyed…

The most enjoyed coffee I ever drank was in south Texas back in the early 70’s. I was living with my Grandparents at the time as they moved and setup a new house in the brush country of McMullin County. As we worked each day around the new house we would be invited to the neighbors for coffee and cakes both morning and afternoon. Now it wasn’t necessarily the coffee that made these cups so enjoyable as the company. Sitting in the living room of that old farmhouse in front of the mesquite fire in the fireplace, saucer and blowing the boiling hot instant coffee eating coffeecake listening to my elders trade stories…now those were some coffee breaks. Maybe it was the rainwater they used for coffee…but I would imagine it was more the pleasure our company brought that couple of 70+ year olds that made the coffee so good…I can still hear the wind blowing through the Salt Cedars outside the front door of that old house.

Saucer and blowed coffee, now that was how you drank coffee in those days when the water was boiled and you couldn’t sip it without burning your lips. Not like drinking perked coffee at all…but then that’s another story…

Gotta run…

2 thoughts on “Musings on…Coffee”

  1. i am a coffee addict, but i cheat….i put so much cream and sugar in it, you’d never know it was coffee. but i love your story…. i think a lot is psychological for me. i don’t feel truly ‘awake’ until i take my first sip in the morning even though i know it hasn’t has time to take effect yet. but there’s something about sitting out on the porch with a steaming hot cup in the mornings….. a ritual i grew up with.

  2. I can remember times in my life when that first cup and the first cigarette were the morning ritual. I lost the cigarette’s a decade ago and the coffee now waits till after the rest of my morning ritual. Seems coffee has become something associated with computer musings, both at home and at work.

    Thanks for the kind words…

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