Thursday, May 05, 2005

Gastronomy Domine I*

Ever seeking the ultimate coffee experience, Karen bought a roaster. We already fork over $$$ for 100% Kona, but that's not good enough for my lovely arabicatroph**. Now she can buy green Kona beans and roast them herself. I'm not sure I understand this. Isn't Vietnamese iced coffee already the ultimate coffee experience? Imagine a cup of liquefied Dreyer's coffee ice cream with all the punch of a triple espresso. It doesn't get much better than that . . . right? Wrong. Turns out I've been drinking stale coffee all of my life. While green coffee beans will stay fresh for many months, roasted beans start losing it within two weeks of the roast. Hence the desire to burn one's own beans. The desired end product is something between a full city roast and a full French roast. You want it just past the second crack stage. Yes, that's how I love my beans: with two cracks***. Theoretically, if we start with 100% Kona green beans and roast 'em just right, we'll get the perfect cup of coffee. Well . . . maybe not, since these Jamaicans claim their stuff is better than Kona. And then there's Indonesian crappucino. This is not an urban legend. (Technically, it would be a third world legend, but it's true.) The world's rarest, most prized, and most expensive coffee is Kopi Luwak, which owes its distinctive "earthy, musty, syrupy, smooth and rich [flavor], with both jungle and chocolate undertones" to its passage through the bowels of the Asian palm civet, Paradoxurus hermaphroditus. Mmmm, musty and chocolatey. Only William S. Burroughs reaches such rhapsodic heights in describing the smell of bowels. What? You don't believe my Kopi Luwak story? Here's a link at Nature.com. (The quote above comes from this Nature News story.) Thousand-dollar-per-kilogram coffee wouldn't ordinarily rank a Nature News piece, but the story has a more serious side, as it covers Canadian food scientist Massimo Marcone's efforts to reproduce Kopi Luwak under alternate circumstances. He reasoned that in Ethiopia, a different species of civet coexists with wild coffee beans, and thus: "In a forthcoming issue of Food Research International, Marcone describes how he brewed coffee from beans that he personally picked out of the faeces of African civets (Civettictis civetta) and compared it with a mug of Kopi Luwak." Now, that's dedication. So here's what I'm thinking. We have a bag of green Kona coffee beans. We also own two cats, one of whom will eat anything . . . Knowing Karen, she will be content to roast her Kona green beans and call it the ultimate coffee experience. But I know better. D. *If you need an explanation for this title, you're either too young, or too old; in any case, this joke loses all humor in its explanation. Sorry, kids (gramps), ask your 43-year-old father (son). **Just because I shun neologisms in my writing doesn't mean I can't do 'em. By the way, a quick search will show you that www.arabicatroph.com is available, so if you're an obligate coffeaphage, you might consider setting up a website. ***Hey, Maureen: betcha didn't think I could sexualize coffee beans!

5 Comments:

Blogger mm said...

Actuallly Doug, I never doubted it for a second.

5/06/2005 03:07:00 AM  
Blogger mm said...

and by the way - I keep popping in and artificially inflating your stats, but I want to know how your son made out. Don't forget to let us know.

5/06/2005 09:04:00 AM  
Blogger Pat said...

1) I actually have a tape somewhere with a cover of "Astronomy Domine", by the Montréal "cyberpunk"/light-metal band Voivod. No kidding.

2) I read a Dave Barry article years ago which discussed Kopi Luwak coffee. At one point he actually tasted the stuff, and found that it tasted pretty similar to his regular brew. He began to wonder if he was being ripped off, if someone was just saying they were selling Kopi Luwak. Then he thought, What kind of a world do we live in when we feel ripped off that our coffee may not have been shat out by a weasel?

-pat

5/06/2005 09:57:00 AM  
Blogger Douglas Hoffman said...

Mo: Thanks. Jake is seeing the neurologist's neurologist today, so I ought to be posting tonight or tomorrow on that. Nail-biting all the way. The latest idea is viral meningitis (to which my internal demon is saying, "Yeah, but for ten weeks?") but that would mean the poor kid will need an LP (lumbar puncture). Well, I've had one, and his mom (who has MS) has had a few. It's all in the family.

And . . . jeez, Mo, you're the one who is inflating my stats? I don't know whether to be tickled or peeved.

Pat: I'd like to hear that cover. I enjoy most covers (assuming I liked the song in the first place). Great Dave Barry quote. This was the first I'd ever heard of the stuff.

5/06/2005 11:59:00 AM  
Blogger 贝贝 said...

The Tax Return Crack-Up<3>
Granted, there are usuallyMicrosoft Office 2010write-ups when presidential contenders make their tax returns available, but the coverage falls far short of the Office 2010
full court press (pardon the pun) that the Clintons have received. What's Microsoft Office 2007different now?Office 2007One possibility is that most upper middle class Democrats, and therefore most Microsoft OfficeOffice 2007 keyeditors and reporters of our nation's big papers as well as Office 2007 downloadtelevision producers, are Obama supporters who think that Hillary should hurry up Office 2007 Professionaland drop out of the race already.Microsoft outlook
Microsoft outlook 2010Whom elite liberals are pulling for really does shape political coverage in ways

11/22/2010 12:51:00 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home