The Complicated Road To Complicated Coffee
We don't see as much plain coffee these days as we used to. What could be the reason for it? It's probably because it is very easy these days to brew up a cup of gourmet coffee for your family, friends, and acquaintances. There are now coffee clubs and coffee social areas where coffee is taking on the look of a social group. These meeting places can take place within the shops and community or on the Internet. Gone are the days when you just went to a coffee shop to get a regular cup of coffee. This is a happening because of an obsession by coffee fans all over America for the gourmet or specialty coffee.
These people visit all the coffee specialty stores and order it from catalogues or the Internet. They love grinding the coffee beans themselves. And when they take trips to places like Costa Rica, they look for and bring back the specialty coffees. Now we have "coffee tasting" events much like wine tasting. There is even interior design products and furniture coming on the market touting a coffee theme -- great gifts for the coffee fan.
Coffee had its beginnings as a stimulant in 900 A. It has also had its beginnings in a variety of uses such as a medicine and a wine. Nothing is much different today. Coffee is one of the few untouched products over time but that is quickly changing. People are coming up with all sorts of ways to improve its flavor and aroma and will probably keep doing it well into the future. And coffee shares a good chunk of the world's market. It is second only to oil in dollar volume as a world commodity. People also these days are constantly trying to reduce their caffeine intake. A pound of coffee has half the caffeine as a pound of tea yet we get more caffeine in a cup of coffee? Why? It is because a pound of tea will give us 160 cups of coffee and a pound of coffee only gives us 40.
This may disappoint those of you who have to drink decaffeinated coffee but hate the taste of it. Also, it is interesting to note, that when you grow coffee at high altitudes, the result is less caffeine. This is probably one of the advantages of gourmet coffee in that it is grown at much higher altitudes than the standard grocery store blends. There are a variety of different types of coffee beans -- too many for this writing. Some beans we will mention are: You have Latte, Espresso, Low-Fat, Organic, Cappuccino, lightly-spiced Arabian with no filter, Cal, Decaf, Half-Decaf, Black Forest, Cappuccino, Cafe au Lait, Alpine which has brown sugar, a Spanish coffee bean meaning "with honey": Caf‚ con Miel, and (Spanish for coffee with honey), and Cafe de Olla (which is sweet and made with chocolate). Go and enjoy a coffee tasting event when you get the chance. You will be happy to see that gourmet coffee is slowly migrating to the classification of "art form." At one of these events you could taste up to 2 dozen (or even more) blends. You could even leave as somewhat of a coffee expert. This would definitely be an activity to enjoy if you really like coffee.
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