Learn Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Coffee and Coffee Gear

Illustration for article titled Learn Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Coffee and Coffee Gear

You might've noticed that the other Mat and I talk a lot about coffee and coffee gear, and occasionally we say some things that sound crazy, like the French Press is the most brutal "French" invention since the guillotine, or that we'd sooner drink water from a muddy elephant footprint pressed into a swamp fed by nightsoil runoff than anything that comes out of a Keurig. We're not trying to be jerks, really. Honest. Mostly.

Anyway, some friends of ours are in New York City for the next couple days—and by friends of ours, we mean some of the best baristas and coffee minds in the North American continent—putting on Coffee Common, an exceptional pop-up store. If you like coffee, or think you might or just want to know more about it, you should go.

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Illustration for article titled Learn Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About Coffee and Coffee Gear

Why? For just $5, you can sip and sample as much of some of the best coffee around as you'd like, roasted by excellent hands at Intelligentsia, heart, Gimme Coffee and others, and prepared by some of the most talented baristas working. Wanna know the difference between coffee made with an Aeropress and a V60, or between a coffee from Honduras and one from Kenya? Coffee Common has the answers. I think it'll blow your tastebuds out the back of your throat because it's not like any coffee you've ever had. Probably, anyway. That's one reason.

The other reason is that these baristas will teach you how to make amazing coffee yourself. They'll show you what gear to buy (it's cheaper than you'd think), and exactly how to use it. Or, you can bring in your own gear and they'll walk you through how to wring the most delicious possible coffee out of it. Like a Genius Bar, but for coffee. (No Keurigs or giant espresso machines, please, though for $20 you can buy an espresso lesson.)

If you can't make it, they've got a Google Hang Out running. Coffee Common's running today through Sunday, from 11am to 6pm most days, at 144 Tenth Ave. in Manhattan. There's other cool demos happening throughout the week that I won't spoil. Maybe I'll see you there. [Coffee Common]

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DISCUSSION

I wish we had stuff like that here in Holland. Coffee quality awareness would save me hours of explaining to people why I've got coffee beans in my fridge, why the 0.1 gram scale is necessary, why the massive grinder is necessary, why the PID temperature control and why the mess and the effort are all worth it.

People here still think starbucks is a big deal since they are only just rolling out their chain. Completely forgetting the rich coffee culture of the Dutch, which consists of drinking drip coffee at 11am and after dinner. Always with company, never alone. This is ofcourse due to coffee being a colonial good and the Netherlands having a rich colonial past. This also explains the Dutch ranking 5th in world coffee consumption, while neighboring countries such as German and Belgium ranking significantly lower.

Nowadays, a large part of the Dutch populace, easily impressed by inane tv shows, now thinks a large cardboard starbucks jug is cool.

Ahwell, I'm just as guilty for embracing american artisanal, quality focused, coffee culture, but at least my coffee tastes good.