Coffee has long been a popular beverage, but in the last few decades, it’s gone through a series of changes. Moving away from coffee as a cheap beverage towards artisanal coffee, away from exclusively drip brew and percolator coffee served black towards coffee with complex ingredients, like cappuccinos, mochas, and lattes. Coffee now has two distinct schools of thought, separated by philosophy of use. On one hand, there is traditional coffee drinkers, who enjoy a fifty cent cup of coffee from hometown restaurants, or sipping it from a styrofoam cup, complementary from the bank . Sometimes it’s hot, strong black coffee, sometimes it’s weak, lukewarm, but still offers a familiar pick-me-up sensation.

Some discerning black coffee drinkers think of coffee like fine wine, however. The origin of the bean, the roasting method, all variables proudly advertised to make the flavor of the brew distinct. The black coffee drinker can now venture into novelty brew methods like pressing the grounds in a hot water bath, or using a glass apparatus that uses heat and cold to create a vacuum to pull steam through the grounds rather than letting hot water run over the beans. Conversely, more convenient methods that take away the need to even handle the beans at all, serving the coffee grounds in sealed individual pods that a home machine punctures with a needle and injects hot water into the pod, making the coffee brewing process a single step for the consumer.

Be sure to check out the 7-27 print edition of the Plaindealer for the full story.