Coffee Hound

I’ve always been a tea guy. Un-American, I know, but since high school, I’ve been drinking highly sugared tea, usually with lemon rather than milk. Lots of tea. Lots of sugar. Coffee, which my mother drank black and very strong, never appealed. Like everybody else in those days, she made it in a percolator. And the coffee itself was probably whatever was on sale at the grocery that week. I didn’t like it at all, even with the standard milk and sugar she eschewed.

Last winter, after I got home from Mayo, I realized two things: how flabby-assed fat I was, and just how much sugar my multiple large mugs of tea were delivering, I stopped cold turkey. It was hard, and the unsweetened herbal tea I tried to replace it with did not satisfy. I turned to my friends for help.

A few of them had gotten in early decades ago on what’s called “second wave” coffee, the movement that spawned both the excellent Peet’s and the unfortunate Starbucks. They’ve moved on to “third wave” roasters, mostly small outfits with maniacal concern for proper sourcing, roasting, and brewing. I began to ask questions, and to taste. The rituals that accompanied their coffee brewing intrigued me. A Chemex here, a french press there, here a cold brew, there a miniature espresso machine, EIEIO.

And then some of the coffee itself began to grow on me.

…and a year or so later, here I am, brewing cups of Yirgacheffe in one of these:


Gosh, what I’ve been missing! Especially that first sip every morning! Black, of course…Here I am, mom.

And I’m down just shy of 30 pounds.