coffee gets a day
Coffee has a birthplace: Ethiopia.
Coffee is a fruit; it is seasonal, with a lot of variety and flavor.
Coffee is a culture. As a beverage, specialty coffee to be specific, is like a person or a society with the aim to pursue excellence in its craft (art), letters (expression and exposition), behavior (manners) and interests (scholarly pursuits).
On National Coffee Day, living in the nation of America, in a coastal city like Los Angeles, my focus is on the independent coffee shops whose culture thrives because of everyday dollars of everyday people.
According to the National Coffee Association Data Trends Report, 150,000,000 people (over the age of 18) drink coffee every day. When I drink a cup, or you drink a cup, we are included in that number. Whether our reason for drinking is our wake-up call; to participate in a morning, afternoon or evening ritual of self-care, or, is hinged upon finding and holding space with another, coffee is a tour de force whose expression and achievement comes at the hands of skilled humans throughout the value stream.
On this day, and the upcoming International Coffee Day, it is my desire that you explore the art of coffee, that you enter spaces where you might be able to locate the owner on bar, preparing brunch service from its menu, or even bussing a table because they’re a team like that.
It is my desire that you might walk into a coffee shop and meet a stranger who isn’t a stranger at all. Perhaps, you’ll stand behind them in line, wait alongside them for an order, or pull up a chair to the communal table and discover something about their humanity that deepens your appreciation for being a living human yourself.
According to an SCA report from data collected from 2017-2018, the most ordered beverage in our nation, by far is the latte.
A latte is an espresso based drink whose.proportions are 1/4 espresso to 3/4 milk. If this is what you have today, enjoy it! Should you choose to explore beyond your staple order, I challenge you to deconstruct your drink. Impose upon yourself, tasting of the makeup of your beverage upon. Opt to taste that espresso as a stand-alone drink even if it’s just a few sips. Then, ask you’re barista if you might sample the milk you’ll be pairing with your drink.
This exercise will allow your palate an opportunity to receive flavors that you might be unaccustomed to on their own. This is okay. The important part, is to give yourself the chance to explore what coffee is by means of various expressions of extractions.
It is also my desire that you experience the possibilities of coffee. Whether your preference is coffee – drip or by espresso – with milk or even as an elongated cold extraction, I want for you this day and any other day that you might see fit, to taste the progeny of Africa, by way of Ethiopia. Coffee is our history, a cultural inheritance to people of the diaspora and by extension the world. It is the seed of infinite possibilities, the fruit of the world.
Lastly, whether you visit a hole-in-the-wall in a major city, a small town coffee hub or even a high end, astutely built, from the ground up coffee bar, may your coffee wishes be yours and come true.
Chèrmelle, aka The Coffeetographer