Coffee and I have a love affair that has been raging ever since I was a little girl, accompanying my dad to Chock Full o’Nuts on West 57th, across from Carnegie Hall. It’d be after dance lessons that we’d go for a treat. He’d have his straight up, while I had hot chocolate, waiting to discover why my father could not be parted from a steady stream of black coffee.
My caffeinated heart has beat a steady rhythm for most of my adult life. There was one brutal exception that lasted nine long months. Even the smell of the beans would make my stomach turn. On top of the normal worries of a pregnant woman, were the thoughts that I would never be able to drink coffee, again. Fortunately, my fears were misplaced, and after that long drought, I returned to my sweet elixir.
Over the years I’ve experimented with different techniques, French presses, cappuccino makers, but after being frustrated by an overpriced Cuisinart, I bought a cheap Kitchen Aid pot which I rely on for the first cup of the day. Clearly, I’m not a coffee snob. But, working in Princeton has given me the opportunity to drink some of the best coffee around. Yes, yes, I speak of Small World. It’s my go-to for the afternoon latte, or NOLA. It’s the salvation that gets me through my regular night shift.
Am I alone, or are there any of you who feel as strongly about your caffeine addiction? If you’re reading this on a bit of downtime, how about settling in with a cuppa, playing a little Ella, and letting your mind wander for a few moments? Come on by and check out a copy of Uncommon Grounds: The History of Coffee and How It Transformed Our World by Mark Pendergrast. If coffee’s not your thing, have you visited Infini-T Cafe and Spice Souk? Their London Fog Chai will transport you across the pond within the first two sips. Mmmm…