When I was a tiny tot, I used to accompany my father to his coffee breaks at my grandpa’s farmhouse. Coffee break was a sacred time every day when all of my uncles (and sometimes my aunts) would stop what they were doing and gather for coffee and chatter. I loved the smell of the brew and the “adultness” of it all — until the day I tried a sip from my father’s mug. He drank his coffee with cream, no sugar, and it was bitter and disgusting to my child’s palate. I had little interest in coffee break after that.
Fast forward 15 years, and I’m a college student with a full class load and two jobs. I started drinking coffee, not because I liked it, but to survive. I dumped a crapload of sugar into it to disguise the taste and went on my merry way. Somewhere between freshman and senior year, I actually started to like it. A short stint with an artisan coffee roaster in my mid twenties sealed the deal, and I became a certified coffee snob.
These days, I still drink quite a bit of coffee (though usually decaf, thanks to my heart). And I drink it just the way my father does: no sugar, lots of cream.
Want to start your own sacred coffee ritual? Here are some links to get you started.
- I first learned about Vietnamese coffee at my local pho restaurant. It is a rich, espresso-like brew usually combined with sweetened condensed milk. Coffee company Trung Nguyen has more information as well as the special phin filter for brewing, and this snappy little video shows you how to make your own Vietnamese coffee.
- A few months ago, Amanda Gynther shared with us the joy of Viennese coffee right here on Scoutie Girl. Viennese coffee is essentially your classic latte, but better. You can also make it at home with your own two hands — no machines necessary. Amanda gives her take on the process here, while I give my own instructions here (’cause I couldn’t NOT try it).
- Learn about the Bean Belt as well as the top ten coffee producing regions from National Geographic. Then hop over to their roasts page to learn about the differences in the way the beans are roasted.
- Feeling daring? Sweet Maria’s has easy to follow instructions on roasting your own beans at home.
- Just for fun, enjoy this coffee facts comic by funnyman Matthew Inman of The Oatmeal.