Monday, February 18, 2008

Coffee Makes Me Smarter

So, I might like coffee. Just a little.*

Let be honest, I could have an entire blog on coffee. It’s addictive nature, the best places to get coffee, the best kinds of coffee, how happy I get when I drink coffee (I mean, really, it’s my Prozac!), how I’m scared of the no coffee rule if I get pregnant some day, and the best lattes to try.

But, I’ll spare you the pain of my ruminating on the joys of coffee.

I never had a coffee pot because I didn’t want to enable my addi
ction. So I unloaded what possibly amounted to thousands of dollars at coffee shops (and subjected myself to some cheap, nasty instant coffee into which I melted Snickers bars. I am not joking. Although am possibly really gross.)

Upon getting married, we were gifted a veritable mountain of money. In Target gift cards, that is. We had discussed getting a coffee pot to help defray the cost of my addiction, but didn’t register for it because we couldn’t find the Perfect Pot. Oh I wanted all the bells and whistles. I wanted to be able to program a pot of coffee for the instant I woke up, at the temperature I desired, made with a little plastic as possible.

Then I got this pesky email that annoyingly made me consider the most energy efficient way to brew coffee. I mean, it’s a blessing and a curse, really, to learn about something like that. It’s always great to know that there are better ways to do things – but, I reallywantedthebellsandwhistles, darn it!

According to Ideal Bite, here are the coffee brewing methods from most-to-least energy efficient:

  1. Cold water brewing (no idea how THAT would work or taste)
  2. French press
  3. Moka pot on the stove (again, no idea)
  4. Plain old electric coffee pot

So we went right out and bought ourselves a cute little French press from Target. It’s pretty easy to use, but I’ll admit it’s more work than a plain old coffee pot.

Why I love our French press:

  • Less waste! You don’t need filters so just wash or rinse it out every time
  • Cheaper – it was less than $20 and there are no filters to ever buy.
  • Smaller – we live in a teeny space. Have you seen our kitchen?! So we need every square inch we can get! It doesn’t use up a plug and takes up about a 5 inch circle on our shelf. Plus, we don’t really need a 10 cup coffee maker, so our little 24-oz press is perfect for us.
  • Materials – it’s made out of 80-90% glass with just a plastic handle. So someday I can recycle it! Plus, it’s just a lot less resource-intensive than a hunk-o-plastic coffee pot
  • Saves energy
  • It tastes SO GOOD since the coffee is freshly ground and brewed by hand. Plus it’s kinda fun (except when I’m running late and rushed! Which is every. single. morning. without. exception.)

Why it can be a pain:

  • We can’t use ground coffee for drip coffee makers; we buy whole beans and have to grind so we don't get little tiny particles of grounds in our coffee.
  • We have to manually boil and pour the water. Just a little more work and a little less convenience.
  • No bells and whistles. At all.
Happy coffee drinking!
This is actually a freakin' awesome coffee shop in San Francisco - they have a compost bin next to their trashcan so you can compost your wooden stirrer and compostable coffee cup. SO cool.

* My heart flutters at the mere mention of coffee.

1 comment:

  1. I love coffee too, but it doesn't like me so well. I'm very sensitive to caffeine so I get the shakes and slight nausea when I drink coffee without a big ole plate of carbs and protein. What a drag!

    Anyway, that caffeine sensitivity lead me to try cold-brewing. You get a lot less caffeine going that route. The drawback for me was I used a lot more coffee to get the same great flavor. Could have been due to the "primitive" nature of my brewing technique.

    It's easy to do, no special equipment needed (though there are some high priced machines out there that are designed for cold-brewing). Try it and you'll like the flavor, I promise


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