Monday, December 18, 2006

Good Coffee

I was thinking about coffee this evening, craving a post-dinner espresso. Coffee that can make me close my eyes in pleasure when I sip the first warm taste. Not all coffee can do that... It is remarkably rare in fact. But I have been able to find places that make it just right.

It is not an addiction, my love of coffee. I can easily skip days or even weeks without any. In fact, if I'm in a spot where I haven't found any good coffee, I'd easily get a hot chocolate or another drink instead of drinking the bad stuff.

In my opinion, one of the most common problems with coffee in the U.S. is that the beans are burnt. "Dark roast" they call it, but charred to death is what it really means.

In San Francisco, there are a few places that can truly satisfy my longing: Blue Bottle is one of them, coincidentally named after something else that I'm quite fond of. Gabby took me there when I first began editing her film, after we'd discovered a common love of good food and, among other things, coffee. But now, you can find their coffee everywhere. My current favourite place to have a Blue Bottle Cappuccino is in Berkeley, at the lovely Guerilla Café, where they serve the most perfectly poached eggs and they have a waffle curator. Now that should give you an idea of how seriously they take their waffles.

Ritual Café (also in San Francisco) serves Stumptown coffee, another coffee that I love, which is shipped down from Portland, Oregon, where I drank their coffee for the first time.

And then, there was Café Organica which has mysteriously closed and left an empty place in my heart. No idea what happened, just one day, one sad saturday morning, I put a big fleece over my lounge-about-the-house-wear, and shuffled, half asleep, on over only to find the doors closed and huge metal chains keeping the door shut. And that was that. To this day the corner is the same: the remnants of the café are now strewn about the interior and it looks completely abandoned. And this came so shortly after they were written up as the number one best coffee in the city. Whatever happened to them?

*sigh* So only two places in the city right now whose coffee I love. Perhaps I simply need to explore more.

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