I salute the history of coffee.
Brewed every morning in homes around the globe
In coffeemakers, French presses, Bialetti moka pots, perculators, paper filter cones
The choice of beans is vast, dark or light roasts, single origin or blends.
Endless possibilities await for our daily cup of joe
Maybe an Esspresso, a latte, a dry cappuccino or a sweet café cubano
A wake-me-up in the morning
A pick-me-up in the afternoon
A stay-awake-cram-for-the-exam late at night
A daily ritual for many, a religion for some.
From the tropical islands of Hawaii to the Indonesian archipelago
From the Brazilian highlands to the slopes of Mount Kilimanjaro
From the African Horn of Ethiopia to the Yemeni mountains on the Arabian Peninsula
Coffee trees thrive, but never more than a thousand miles from the equator.
The newly tilled fresh, fertile earth soaks in the rain
Sheltered by the shade of the forest, the hard working growers tend their trees
Enriched fertile soil nourishes the growing coffee cherries
Not yet revealing which ones hold the most precious fruit.
Coffee berry by coffee berry, picked ripe by hand at harvest time
Then washed, depulped, fermented and dried in the stifling hot tropical sun
Laboriously and carefully sorted by hand on family farms
To be finally shipped to us coffee connoisseurs near and far.
What will it be on this cold wintry morning?
For the discriminate palate there is Sulawesi Kalosi, Mocha Sanani or Sumatra Mandheling,
Ethiopia Yirgchaffe, Brazil Minas or Kona for the taste bud adventure.
While the rest swear by Folgers, “Cause it’s the richest kind”.
Every morning my brain jolts awake with the purr
Of my burr grinders roar slowly crushing the glistening beans to perfection
Promptly placed into a French press and mixed with boiling water
The lid’s put on and precisely three and a half minutes later
The timer announces the elixir is steeped to perfection.
An ambrosial bouquet permeates the entire house
With my favorite cup filled I retreat to the couch
Eyes closed, I inhale the essence of the brew
This steamy hot liquid so black and so strong, slightly bitter and spicy
Refined floral, a little spice laden air and citrusy tang dance on my palate.
As heady aromas explode on my tongue
They whisk me off into many corners of the world
And I dream of these faraway lands
I would love to go visit with my French press in hand
Around the globe for tastings delicious, I would start with
The birth place of the bean, Ethiopia, which I have not yet explored.