My Journey into the World of Coffee

Today, I think I took another big step in my descent (or rise) into the [potentially snobby] world of coffee drinking. I made my first pot of pour over coffee by myself.

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Sidenote: I just realized that this is my second out of not that many blog posts about warm beverages. Sorry, okay not really, cause you’re not held captive to reading my musings.

Making a pour over is not a big deal in the hipster, coffee-loving, wealthy world where I’m living; however, for me it was eyeopening and a marker of where my coffee journey has gone and a bit of a game changer.

First off, let it be known that I still am a tea lover too, I’m kind of cheating on tea but I’m still sticking with it. A cup of English breakfast tea every morning is still my #1 morning jam. I’ve always been more of a tea drinker and intentionally tried not to get hooked on coffee. I figured that if I didn’t like the taste, why would I get addicted to it. Also, then if I actually needed more caffeine & I wasn’t addicted, the effect of drinking a small amount of coffee would be much bigger. So I haven’t ever invested myself in trying to like it. Even through college & working full-time + part-time+ grad school, though I have gulped it down on occasion when in desperate situations.

My new found coffee love started in Europe. Go figure. I drank my first cup of coffee that I fell I was head over heels for in Germany and then got addicted to cappuccinos in Italy. I mean, if you’ve had one, you know.

I can’t even adequately described how good this beverage tasted. The coffee was so smooth. It tasted almost like tea in it’s purity and was so flavorful, slightly bitter but not anything like the bitterness of the coffee I’ve had in the US. Then add some steamed milk, bam. No sugar needed! (for the record, I drink black tea but could not really handle the black coffee I’d had in the US because it’s so bitter) No wonder Europeans seem to all be managing their weight better 🙂 We stayed at a friend of my travel companion’s home in the Italian countryside and there I was introduced to the Moka pot. It seemed so easy to make delicious coffee ON YOUR OWN STOVE. I stocked up on coffee and bought a Moka pot, one of my few souvenirs.

When I returned to the states, I naively tried a cappuccino at Starbucks hoping to once again experience the glorious taste of European cappuccino. That was a mistake and it tasted like burnt coffee with milk. I also tried to use the Moka pot but didn’t fully pick up on the habit enough to have fresh coffee on hand or get in a habit of perfecting the art. So I remained a tea drinker. On occasion, I would drink a flat white from Starbucks because it had a lot of steam milk and I got used to the burnt tasting bitterness.

A brief synopsis of how I went further down the slippery slope: met my now husband who liked coffee and has had more time on his hands this year 🙂 so has really gotten into making it, got hooked on fancier brewed coffee at some local coffee shops and my family’s houses, etc. We also took a trip to the PNW (pacific northwest) & had some delightful coffee there which pretty much solidified the growing love for Good coffee. Husband bought a Chemex and makes legit coffee on the weekends. I still drink tea and at some point started having a cup of early afternoon coffee from our pretty upscale coffee machine at work. <<<Thus, here I am.>>> Joining the club with the rest of the world and am now feigning the aroma, the taste, the warmth of a “cup of Joe.” Wait, that anecdote doesn’t sound fancy enough for the coffee that I am craving. It’s more like a “Cuppa Java” or something. If you want to know the meaning of cup of Joe, I just got curious too (https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/cup_of_joe).

The point of no return and reason I found myself googling “how to use a chemex” is that we had a snow storm & I got 3 days in a row of delish made-with-love pour over coffee courtesy of my husband. And when I got a craving for it today – I decided that watching a instructional Youtube videos and going home and making a cup is the perfect lunch time activity. I made the cup and it was fun! And I may Still be running off of energy from it, woo.

The most stressful part was honestly that I didn’t watch a video of how to fold the filter or dump in the coffee (you literally just pour the fresh grinds into the filter lol).

But I figured it out. Tonight, the husband asked me ALL about it and enthusiastically shared his tips.. I had obviously never really bothered to learn enough about his process to make it myself. But now we can be coffee nerds together, I ‘spose. It’s kind of an expensive hobby but in moderation, it’s actually cheaper per cup than splurging on a latte. After our long discussion with all the details I would’ve normally not listened too, I realized that we are SUPER NOVICE in our preparation of fancy coffee. Okay, he is moving towards an intermediate level but apparently people know the most appropriate water temperature is for brewing a bean depending on the altitude in which it was grown. WOW. These people know so much. They are crazy. I want to know all the things that they know about coffee. I should also say that we are already behind in our technology for pour overs, there’s some sort of fancy contraption that’s better than the Chemex or V60 but I can’t remember the name for the life of me (after hearing it probably 10 times).

My next steps are as follows:

  • practice my pouring technique
  • learn more about different types of coffee beans
  • read up on coffee tastes and brewing methods to know the words to say about the coffee-related things
  • follow all of the crazy coffee people on Instagram

Feel free to judge or secretly curse me for making time to brew fancy coffee and also finding a bit of time to blog about it. People use their time for worse things & I’m currently fulfilled/feel good about my life schedule 🙂