I thought if I detailed how coffee has been a part of my life for a very long time it would allow you to gain a better understanding of how finding a good cup is more than just finding a good cup!
I have a long history with coffee. And it started when I was quite young.
Picture if you will a family in the early 1980’s sitting down to breakfast at Denny’s. There is a Mom and a Dad and two young girls. A waitress walks up to the table and asks for our drink order. She walks away with an order for three coffees and a hot chocolate.
Who do you think got the hot chocolate?
If you guessed one of the girls, you would have been wrong!
It was for my mother.
How did I become a pre-teen for a penchant for coffee? It wasn’t a need for caffeine. Lord know, no child needs more of that (which is precisely why I was limited to one cup on the weekends), I truly loved the taste!
The taste. Acquired when I was quite young living in Panama. We had a maid who let my sister and I have a bit of coffee with LOTS of milk and LOTS of sugar. Looking back, probably not the best treat to give a little girl, but I suppose it could have been worse.
From that point on until I was a student in college, I drank coffee. Regular drip coffee. Then my family moved to Spain and in the summer between my first and second year of college I worked at the Embassy in Madrid where I was exposed to espresso for the first time. When I returned back to the U.S. I brought back a tin of coffee and espresso cups and saucers. The first purchase I made was to buy an espresso machine! I was hooked.
I drank espresso from that point forward.
My boyfriend in college had an older sister who was married to a Swiss national. They had lived in Paris and enjoyed European coffee. They introduced me to a coffee press, an item that became a permanent part of my home from that point on.
And then the Starbucks explosion happened and my habit became a lot easier to continue. I had stopped drinking drip coffee, certainly in the office as it was never that great in terms of quality. I would drink a coffee in the morning at home and once I got to work I wouldn’t touch the stuff. But with a Starbucks on every corner, I get hop out of the office to grab a coffee a couple times of day. Not a cheap endeavor but not one I was willing to give-up either.
In 2003, I transferred my job to Switzerland and discovered a whole new world of coffee…Nespresso. My office was equipped with a machine on every floor and it was an important aspect of office socializing and collaboration. After a year or two I was drinking up 6, 7, 8 espressos a day!
And I swear it had nothing to do with George Clooney!
When I moved back to the US the first thing I bought was a Nespresso machine and it continues to be the coffee I drink at home. I start every work day morning with an espresso. Every weekend morning with a cafe creme (cappuccino) since I have more time to drink it.
Once I get into the city there are so many options for good coffee it is ridiculous. And the coffee lover in me seeks them all out whether it is the city’s famous Blue Bottle Coffee, Philz Coffee, Four Barrel Coffee or places serving Northwest greats like Stumptown Coffee, the choices are endless!
With such an amazing coffee selection it sometimes becomes hard to differentiate one shop from another. That’s where people and stories come into play. Tomorrow I will share a great new coffee spot that has both.
How about you? Do you have a coffee story?
Ever wonder how to order coffee in Paris? My guide might help!