I’ve been drinking coffee for years and, offhand, I can’t remember all the varieties I’ve tasted but some of my more memorable cups were Hawaiian Kona coffee and Jamaican Blue Mountain; in Japan, there are vending machines almost everywhere that for one Yen (about $1US), you can get a honest to goodness hot can of coffee and, wow, did I fall in love with it! The scent of fresh coffee, whether from freshly ground beans or opening a brand new can of coffee is intoxicating.
And I’ve come to love hazelnut flavored coffee. I’ve always taken my coffee with cream and sugar; I tried drinking it black in the early days but, nope, couldn’t acquire the taste for black coffee although, years ago at a bowling banquet, I had a coffee that was delicious black; adding anything to it just spoiled it. When trying a new brand of coffee, yeah, I’ll take a sip of it black to see how it’s flavors will explode into my tongue and when my doctor suggested that I give up cream and sugar and drink my coffee black, well, that ain’t ever gonna happen.
I’m reminded of something a character in a book I read said after his friend said that coffee wasn’t needed to wake up in the morning: “If I didn’t drink coffee, I wouldn’t need mornings…”
A friend of mine back in the day and I put some money together and bought ourselves a huge jar of Maxwell House instant coffee that would last most coffee drinkers a couple of weeks (at best)… and drank it all up in a couple of hours as we sat and talked. Man, I was so buzzed it wasn’t funny and until about a year ago, I’d never drank another cup of Maxwell House.
Worst coffee ever was a cup of Starbucks coffee. I’d been hearing about how good this coffee was and a new store had opened up innthe shopping center across my my job so I took a break to go check it out… and wished I hadn’t. The coffee smelled burnt, like coffee that got made and just sat in the pot and on the heating element and had been there for hours. I took one whiff and that burnt aroma made my eyes water so much I almost floated my contacts out.
I asked the barista if this coffee was fresh and she swore that it had just finished brewing a minute or so before I came in. I remember shrugging and, honestly, not believing her while adding sugar and cream to the cup, tasting it as I went along. If I were to guess, I added what would amount to a half cup of sugar and cream and it still tasted as if I hadn’t added a thing to it.
I grimaced and threw the horrid brew away, really pissed that I’d just thrown $2.50 (at the time) into a trash can. But, I had to try it again because, well, girlfriend could have lied to me and poured me a cup from a pot that had really been heating for an hour or more. I paid a visit to another Starbucks location and was asked if I minded waiting for a fresh pot to brew so I did.
And got another cup of the worst coffee I’ve ever tasted. I’ve drank those tiny cups of espresso and even Turkish coffee and as strong as they were, they tasted way better than this supposedly fresh cup of Starbucks’ highly touted coffee. To me, their coffee tasted as if when the beans were roasted, they were very badly burned; then they got ground up and packaged for the stores where, before brewing, a barista further cremated the already incinerated coffee to achieve that very horrible taste and aroma.
Yet, I know some folks who feel that Starbucks’ coffee is the bomb shit. I’m not a coffee snob but I know what tastes good to me… and that muck Starbucks calls coffee doesn’t even come close. Fast forward a few years and, oh, maybe a couple of years ago, I think, when I saw a commercial for Starbucks and they were announcing a lighter coffee blend because, “Some folks can’t get used to our regular blend of coffee…” or something to that effect and I remember snorting derisively and saying that if I was a fan of having their coffee eat away the lining of my stomach, intestines, kidneys and bladder, I’d drink their rotgut coffee all of the time.
No, not really. Not even if you paid me to drink something that smells and tastes like it can polish dull metal to a brilliant, blinding shine…
I’ve had dark roasted coffees and some of them are no joke when it comes to intense coffee flavor but I have no problems drinking them because it tastes like coffee and smells like coffee and not like they’re a burnt sacrifice being offered up or used as fuel for NHRA dragsters and the space shuttles before they all got grounded and mothballed…