My first memories of coffee, like most, are when I was much too young to drink coffee. Every Saturday morning my family would go to our regular breakfast place in the quaint town I grew up in. I always ordered a Strawberry Dream Waffle, and would inevitably get whip cream and sugary strawberries all over my face. At the end of our meal my dad would always take his clean napkin, dip it in his black coffee, and wipe my face with it. I loved how warm the coffee felt on my face, and I loved the smell of it. Though my palette didn’t like the taste of coffee yet, I knew from those small moments that when I grew up, I would love grow to love coffee.
It’s memories like these that always flash back to me whenever I smell a good cup of coffee. Coffee has always been so entwined in my life, that the way I choose to brew my morning cup in the morning can set off a whole range of memories. For those that are truly coffee obsessed, you may be able to relate. Not only does a double-double from Tim Hortons taste wildly different from an espresso from Caffe Artigiano’s–I also have very specific memories associated with each of them.
So, allow me to indulge and walk you through my life of coffee brewing memories, perhaps we have some similar memories:
Growing up hating coffee
Like most kids, I hated the taste of coffee. How could someone drink a whole cup of that stuff? And what’s worse is that my parents didn’t really have the greatest taste in coffee. It was the 90s, so instant coffee was pretty big and my mom’s morning routine was to make a cup of instant mocha with loads of sugar and barely any actual coffee. My heart hurts a bit thinking about how that was even mildly acceptable back then. But I remember my mom drinking it in the morning while she made me my honey toast, and in the rink when she watched me skate. It was a staple in our household.
When my dad got an espresso machine for Christmas
Once the 90s were over, so was my mom’s addiction to instant mocha. Instead, my parents got addicted to lattes from pricey chain coffee shops. To try and decrease the amount of money they were spending, and the amount of disposable cups that were going into the landfill, my dad got an espresso machine for Christmas. (Thanks Santa)! It was a big investment, but it was an amazing machine, that still works to this day! I remember helping my dad set the machine up for the first time. Reading the manual front to back and then back to front to make sure we were using it 100% correctly.
This is when I started to drink coffee pretty regularly. There’s nothing like pressing a button on a machine and getting a frothy latte in the comfort of your own home. In the cold snowy winter my morning routine would be to get out of bed, make a latte, and then sit on the floor literally on top of the heat vent to stay warm. This is also probably around the time that I decided I should move to Vancouver.
When I moved out of my parents house
Moving out of my parents house, and into a dorm room meant that I had to say farewell to the fancy espresso machine. So I bought a drip coffee machine, and it eventually became my lifeline. It wasn’t fancy, but it made some pretty good coffee. The gurgling sound that drip coffee machines make still takes me back to the tiny dorm room I shared with my roommate. You know the ones where you can both be in your separate beds, but can still touch hands? I spend a lot of time in that dorm room, drinking drip coffee, studying, and also…not studying.
When I discovered great coffee shops (and the French Press)
Now that I was an “adult”, I started to get a little bit fancier with my coffee routine. I started to discover some really great coffee shops, mainly Phil & Sebastian (for those that are familiar with Calgary). And something I noticed in these shops was the French Press. For some reason it looked so intimidating to me. Eventually I gussied up the courage to switch up my coffee routine and purchase one. To this day, the French Press is still my favourite way to make a cup of coffee. This phase of my coffee life is where I discovered the joys slowly sipping my coffee while reading a good book. So every time I make French Press today, it’s still a more relaxing type of coffee to me.
When I moved to Vancouver
When I initially moved to Vancouver, all I wanted to do was try every coffee shop in sight. That quickly got pretty expensive, since I was a low budget student once again. I had a really heavy course load, and needed coffee to help me through it. Drinking coffee was no longer about slowly enjoying a French Press, instead I was looking for something that helped me make my coffee fast. That’s when I purchased an Aeropress. This is a relatively new way (invented in 2005) of brewing coffee, but oh man does it make a great cup. With a 30 second brewing time, it was the perfect cup for my busy schedule. I still love making a coffee with my Aeropress, but sometimes it still evokes memories of the stressful school projects that it got me through.
Working at Cook Culture
Now that I’m working at Cook Culture, I exclusively use the Jura coffee machines that are on display in our stores. I’ll often sneak onto the floor at our Howe location to quickly refill my cup. To make a really high quality cup of coffee, all I need to do in the morning is press a single button. A single button that makes a Godly cup of coffee. The Jura machines make a smooth cup of coffee that is honestly better than any Aeropress, french press, or drip coffee machine I’ve ever experienced. So if you ever catch me doing just that, ask me about the machine—and I’ll tell you everything I know!
Check out the Jura A1 Espresso Machine in action!
What are your favourite ways to brew coffee? Share your stories on our Facebook page.