Thursday, January 19, 2012

Breathable Coffee?!?

I don't know how we've made it this far through the blog without talking about coffee! I mean, of course, we are in the city of cafés, right? Coffee, here, at least to us, is one of those beautiful things of life that rank up there with wine, cheese, and fresh bread...those things definitely not worth skimping on. And the mere fact that my 'office' coffee is now my own brew of illy's finest from my Italian coffee maker (ok, so the italians are actually the ones who really figured it out ; ) makes each morning that much more enjoyable. Yesterday, Adam and I were out and about doing our own things on an ever so gray afternoon, and upon meeting up again we said, hey, shall we go grab a coffee? I mean, why not, right? There's a cafe or brasserie or tabac on almost every corner with its own ambiance and charm...we figure we might as well take advantage of this while we can, while we are in a place that isn't bombarded with Starbucks and Dunkin Donuts...yet... (though Starbucks are starting to invade! eek. nothing looks more out of place than a Frenchie with a large to-go cup). Though when ordering a coffee, you really only get a shot of espresso (they just haven't caught on to that concept of having that 6-8oz cup of joe that you can sit, warm yourself up, and enjoy for more than a couple sips...hard to get used to that), but the beauty is, we've found that some places price their items based on the time of day. 

Since Adam and I were there at a slower part of the afternoon, we paid less (we always thought this would be genius marketing for restaurants in the US). In addition, if you feel like just stopping in and grabbing something at the bar vs. being served at your table, again, the price is reduced. We haven't been that adventurous, but it's nice to know the option's there. Anyhow, I read somewhere that France as a whole has over 70,000 cafes, and with all those we see drinking espresso constantly, Adam and I stared wondering if France was most likely the most caffeinated country. Hmmmm, this was an intriguing idea; what countries WERE the most caffeinated? Doing a touch of research, I found that France didn't even come close to being in the top 10. Check out this list to see the rankings (yes, it's the most recent i could find), and seriously, do the math for the #1 country. That's  A LOT of coffee per day! As for the US, a recent pole was taken on which cities spent the most on coffee, and Chicago made #1 averaging almost 3 times what the average American spends. Way to be an addict Chi-city ; )

Anyways, back to coffee in France. Surprisingly, as much as espresso makes up the daily lives of most, tea is actually more popular. It's funny we really haven't noticed more tea drinkers. Then there's the thing I ran across on the web called Le Whif which is this inhaler type thing that you breath to get your taste of coffee and intake of caffeine....WTF?! You know, when you're on the go, and you don't have time to stop in one of those 70,000 cafés. What's even better is the website shows kids sucking on these things. What the hell do THEY need a caffeine boost for? Seriously, and the French look down upon us for bastardizing the art of 'coffee-enjoying' as we run around with 64oz to-go cups of gas station sludge. Hmmmmm..... 

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