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  • Writer's picturegarysjordan

The Perfect Cup of Coffee...

Updated: Mar 14, 2022 not possible to anyone who is restricted to decaffeinated coffee. You won't find Jamaica Blue Mountain, Decaf on your supermarket shelves, nor Kona, nor High Andes, nor [fill in your favorite blend]. Trust me. I was once a coffee nerd.

It is possible to find a perfectly acceptable decaf coffee. If you want a good drip decaf, try Dunkin Doughnuts, or maybe just "Dunkin" now. There are others. Now, if instant is your poison (heh-heh-heh), again there are several. Mine is good-ol' Folgers Crystals. Of course, coffee purists will scoff at my condiments. Black is the way to drink coffee. But not my way. All my additions are shown in the picture.


I posted the following to Argh Ink:

Happiness is a good cup of coffee. I am, even now, sitting down to my first cup of coffee for the day. Is it a “good cup of coffee?” The honest answer is, “No.” What it is, is a good enough cup of coffee. It’s Folgers Crystals Decaf. Instant coffee.

I was once a bit of a coffee snob. I could break out the old eloquent polish and wax on about Aribica versus Robusta beans, the joke about “Mountain Grown – It’s The Reechest Kind.” (Coffee beans do not thrive in the plains.) The five grades of brewed coffee, ending in “mud.” I only bought coffee by the bean, and never more than a half pound at a time. I had my own grinder, my own drip system and filters. (Yes, yes, everyone drinks drip coffee now, but back then most coffee was “percolated.” Remember the Maxwell House commercial, a musical percolator?)

I loved the subtle differences between Kona and High Andes and Jamaica Blue Mountain (reputed to be the best coffee on the planet). Making coffee was a ritual.

Then came the heart attack. In the hospital, I was told to limit my caffeine intake to one cup per day, because it’s a heart irritant. And I tried. Not as hard as I should have. Until the day, a Tuesday, when sitting in a deadly dull and boring annual In Service Refresher Training, I consumed too many cups of coffee to stay awake. And that evening, my irritated heart woke up my Internal Cardio Defibrillator to deliver a life-saving shock. Five times. In hospital, the doctor allowed as how it might have been set a little low, but the caffeine was causal, and I should “Stop Doing That.”

Since that day, all my coffee and tea has been decaffeinated. There are plenty of decaf teas, but decaf coffee generally falls under the category, “Sucks Rocks.” Of course, with time and distance from the gourmet coffees of yore, I have become more tolerant of what I would once have spit out. Also, I don’t want to pull the Mr. Coffee drip coffee machine out of its hidey-hole just to make two cups of coffee, one of which would be cold and bitter before I was ready for seconds. Then I’d need to clean it and restow it, and boils some distilled white vinegar through it from time to time.

There are other instant coffees. Tasters Choice comes to mind – I loved their TV Commercials, and that it had another name in England. Sanka? No sank you. Folgers got me through individual packets, suitable for a single cup. Now I have the big jar in my cupboard.

I doctor it up. I’ve always added sweetening. Sugar gave way to saccharin gave way to aspartame gave way to stevia. The particular stevia these days is chocolate flavored liquid stevia. I got that from Argh Ink. I almost always added a little dairy to my coffee (but never my tea). Milk. 2% milk. Chocolate 2% milk. Half&Half. Heavy whipping cream. And finally, Land-o-Lakes Half&Half Mini-Moos. The mini-moos are those little cups they serve in a bowl next to your coffee at restaurants, and don’t require refrigeration.

So, the good enough coffee I’m enjoying just now started as twelve ounces of spring water heated for three minutes in the (700 watt) microwave, plus two rounded teaspoons of Folgers decaf, plus three squeezes of chocolate flavored stevia, plus two mini-moos. Stir and serve.

It’s the only thing keeping me from launching into my twice-a-year Daylight Savings Rant. 🙂

Aunt Snack replied, Have you ever considered a cup-top drip system? You put it on top of your mug, add a Melitta filter and ground decaf and pour the water over it. It has the same amount of caffeine as the instant and it tastes infinitely better. And you can grind the coffee while the water heats.

Yes. That was my original drip system way back when. The four-to-five cup Mr. Coffee was a compromise between my laziness and expediency. I've owned several drip machines. Besides the Mr. C in its hidey hole (literally beside it) is a Walmart knock-off five-cup machine. They should both go to Goodwill, next trip. Along with a hundred or so filters, but since the filters are no longer in original packaging...

The filters, at least, get repurposed to hold dry snacks or for weighing relatively dry ingredients when I cook.

All my ground decaf is way beyond its best-by, or even its still-tolerable-by date.

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