2010: My Year Of Coffee

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Last year I learned a lot about coffee, but most importantly:

  • I learned that there’s a lot more to coffee than just espresso.
  • Well-brewed coffee has so much more to offer in terms of taste, smoothness and enjoyment.
  • That great coffee is the result of simplicity but precision, consistency in results is a virtue. In the end, it doesn’t take more than a simple drip filter to get great results. Accessories for measuring, scaling and getting proper water flow are optional, but let me assure you, you will want to buy them eventually.
  • It’s all about the beans. I’ve been nothing but spoiled by being in San Francisco, Portland and being put in touch with Square Mile coffee beans. They’ve ruined my coffee taste, but in a very good way. Square Mile has become my favorite provider of excellent beans. Even shipped from the UK, it’s totally worth it, and their customer service is outstanding. Shame on Germany for the coffee beans, honestly!
  • German coffee culture is far behind the rest of the coffee world. Which is both sad and good, because we have some catching up and educating to do. The first reaction you still get from a lot of people when it comes to filtered coffee is simply: bleh. Understandable, because they were used to awful coffee makers. Here’s to improving the situation!
  • It’s easy to infect others with the coffee bug once you make them realize how simple it is.
  • Coffee is about ritual and enjoying it. I’d rather drink no coffee at all than being exposed to a bad or hastily made coffee.
  • I got a lot more picky about my coffee shops and a lot more observing of the barista (if you can even call a lot of them a barista), how they’re making coffee, where they’re doing it wrong (presumptuous, right? but what are you gonna do). It thins out the acceptable coffee shops quite considerably, but
  • Life is too short for bad coffee

Pictured above is my newest acquisition, a Hario cloth filter dripper, also called a woodneck. It’s ingenious, a simple beauty, and the coffee is delicious. I had the pleasure of drinking a coffee made with it back at Penny University, and since then couldn’t really get it out of my head.

Can you tell that I’m going to be writing a lot more about coffee in 2011?

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11 thoughts on “2010: My Year Of Coffee

  1. Funny, I had a similar year with coffee.
    The situation here (Czech Republic) is the same, but fortunately there are good times ahead. The greatest disruption of status quo was the start of Doubleshot (http://doubleshot.cz) – a coffee roasting company. I rediscovered coffee through their offering (you ought to try it out) and I’m happy I did. I’m only afraid I’ll end up as you, buying any and all coffee accessory I can find. I already have a french-press and a clever dripper. Any advice what should be next? The cloth filter seems interesting.

  2. Oh! Totally agree.
    It’s funny, we just bought ourselves a new coffee grinder. Freshly ground coffee is a totally new world for us. Love it.
    Come to melbourne and try the coffee here. Some of the best in the world.. i think :)

  3. I certainly could, Joan, but that’d bring up the problem of getting a good base of green beans, which is kind of what makes roasters like Square Mile special, because they’re taking care of that. I’m fine with ordering my beans from them, since they not only take care about the roast for me, but also about the bean’s origin.

    In the long run though, who knows?

  4. I need a woodneck! Now that I don’t drink beer (my favorites were all very dark and reminded me a little of coffee anyway) I am slowly, but surely traveling into the world of coffee. I’ll be around, learning from you, Matt!

  5. i like your lessons learned. all good stuff.
    (also, i think you should open a pop-up coffee shop in berlin and spread the love!)

  6. I found that the technovorm is the best drip coffee maker. they have been for the alst 25 years. The water goes over 200f so you really get a great steap through and the bar sprays the fine ground to pure coffee bliss!

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