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Nov 25, 2007: Ahhh, coffee

WARNING: narcissism aheadThanks everyone for the wonderful suggestions; I only wish my professional scribblings elicited such passionate feedback! But hey, it's hard to compete with coffee.

The experiment which had slid from one day to seven is now entering its third week. And it think it's fair to say that it's over, and I've given in to joining the caffeinated majority. I still start the day with my regular tea (loose, usually Fortnum Mason's wonderful Royal Blend), but at some point in the afternoon, it's coffee time for me.

I just had my first truly bad cup of coffee (in a Styrofoam cup, here on Air Canada #8391, JFK to Calgary for CanUX). But I didn't need the bad to know the good. I had my first kick-ass cup last Monday. It wasn't the famous Joe's, which was my first, nor the latte at Gorilla, as Victor recommended (though I really enjoyed it, despite the ear-bleedingly loud, crappy music they insist on playing there).

Nope, it was a cup that I made for myself. I've been making MJ a daily dose for about the last eight years. I grind the beans and toss in a shake of cinnamon. (I usually just purchase whatever the house beans are; I will start being more careful to buy fair trade, as some of you suggested.) Anyway, I don't know what it was—the cinnamon, the DIY aspect, or something else—but it was fantastic. Here I had the power in my own hands, every day for all those years, and I'd never tried it. Just goes to show.

Thanks for all the coffee advice; it's the raw material for a true coffee virgin's primer. I will treasure it always.

And if you're ever in Park Slope, look me up: I'll do you some Lou Brew.

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Comment: Adam Kalsey (Nov 25, 2007)

Glad you linked up that previous entry to remind me about it. Otherwise I'd never have checked the comments again and noticed you were open to a shipment of my home roast. I'll roast something up and send it along.

I wouldn't worry so much about fair trade coffee -- if you're buying high-quality beans from a smallish roaster, they've been bought at auction and have fetched a price for the farmer at a much higher price than the fair trade regulations set.

Fair trade coffees are also only bought from collectives, not individual farmers. Your fair trade money is going to a cartel, not a farmer. Sure the money is distributed among the member farmers after the cartel skims their share, but this still locks out many smaller farmers.

Fair trade prices are higher than commodity coffees, certainly, but most auction lots sell for much more than the fair trade prices are set.

Comment: Lou (Nov 28, 2007)

Adam, I'm waiting!

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