It's black; I've added neither milk nor sugar. It barely tastes like coffee -- it's closer to a very intense black Darjeeling tea. This is coffee a coffee-hater might enjoy.
|Ephemeral! and cool reflection.|
How did this coffee come to be in my cup? Why is this morning unlike most mornings?
Well, for starters, I cleaned my coffee maker -- for the first time in the six months I've had it. Like, really cleaned it, by running a vinegar-water mixture through twice then rinsing. I have no idea whether or not cleaning the maker has a net positive impact, but it really can't hurt.
Oh, also, I stopped at Peregrine Espresso on 14th St. on the way home last night and purchased some SUPERB Ethiopian coffee. I asked the fellow working the counter for something light and interesting, and this is what he gave me. I should have photographed the beans, I suppose. Oops.
Now, I regularly buy decent coffee, but I'm often a little lazy and careless -- I'll keep extra beans in the freezer (a no-no), grind more than I'm using in a given pot (nope), and kinda eyeball measurements (like most of my cooking). But armed with very good, fresh beans and a clean coffee maker, I ground fresh this morning and carefully aimed for one level-ish tablespoon for every 5.5 ounce "cup" delineated on my machine. What a difference these tweaks made.
|That's right, I've got a Magic Bullet As Seen On TV.|
The questions remain: Will I change my ways? Will I clean the pot, grind fresh, and always buy in small quantities? Will I make that extra effort in the morning to elevate my coffee from pleasurable to phenomenal?
Stand by for a hostile takeover of Hungry Sam by Religion-Major Sam (Who is Also Hungry).
I think I will. My morning already possesses its ritual elements. I make the coffee, the omelet, and I prepare lunch, then I sit and watch TV or read or write. I relax into my day, rather than rush to meet it. Ritual imbues routine with a sense of intentionality and of transcendent reality; it can make my coffee into a hierophany (in Eliade's The Sacred and the Profane: the breakthrough of the sacred into the World) -- though that might be the caffeine speaking. Adding the morning coffee grind to my coffee-making procedure has already, in just one instance, improved not only the cup in my hands, but also grown my morning ritual in a new direction. And the best rituals seem to arrive from creative experimentation and combination -- just look at Christmas or Passover.
Anyways, it was a REALLY good cup of coffee. Washingtonians, definitely check out Peregrine. Those among you who brew in the morning, give a fresh grind of a new coffee a chance, and try it black. You may find, as I did, that a morning habit can become a morning treat.