I never liked coffee. The only time I used to drink it was at Uni during the few weeks of swotvac, and used purely to keep me awake while cramming for the ludicrous number of Mech Eng exams we had. Even then it was only nasty cheap instant coffee which I used to wash down a No-Doze caffeine tablet. The rest of the year I didn’t touch the stuff.
When I left Uni to galavant around the world, I worked for 6 months in an awesome little coffee shop called Bean Bros in Kerrisdale, Vancouver. The owner Larry used to roast his own beans and it thrived despite a tiny vege store separating us from a Starbucks. (This was in 1996 when Starbucks was growing into the behemoth that it became). With so many varieties available, if I was ever to take up drinking the dark brew, this would be the perfect opportunity. So I began to start my day with a coffee. This then manifested into a several a day event where I began to appreciate the intricate differences between beans.
It got to the point where I would test samples of freshly roasted beans and give feedback. Once I told Larry that there was something wrong with his latest batch. Given the price of beans and my relative newbieness to coffee world, his immediate response was to ignore me. However after we taste tested several samples from the batch he acknowledged the bitterness and threw away several hundred dollars of beans, but not without glaring at me for being so chuffed at making the find!
When I left there with my newfound awesome barista skills to discover Europe (yes that’s right I was the first human to find Europe and claim it as my own sovereign territory!) I didn’t really drink that much. Mostly just a cup every day or two just to sit back and enjoy the novelty of sipping a coffee in a small cafe in Italy or France.