Friday, September 12, 2008

Coffee (In 10 Minutes, Elizabeth!)

Many of us are familiar with the English tradition of taking tea in the mid-part of the day. But I found out through watching Keeping Up Appearances that the English enjoy drinking coffee as well. I don't know why that would surprise me so [it's not even that much of a surprise really] because why can't the English drink coffee? They can drink anything they like. I'm sure some of them even drink Bubble Tea or cappucinos. Drinks know no geographical boundaries.

But I suppose what I wanted to know more about was whether some people preferred to take coffee rather than tea, as a replacement of sorts. Does coffee have the same psychologically comforting effects that tea does when one is having a bad day? Let's see if I can find out.

Upon first glance, there isn't that much information floating around the internet about English coffee. When you search for English tea, the number of web sites devoted to it or even mentioning it is astounding. But English coffee, not that much. I did however find this interesting post on a barista blog called jimseven. It's a must-read. The author mentions that, in many years past, London had a coffee culture. Take note of the past tense.

I found another article online that echoes this same thought. A ways back in its history, England once nurtured a thriving coffee culture, but for one reason or another [the author includes women's objections to being excluded from coffeehouses as one of those reasons] the popularity of the beverage unfortunately fell to the wayside.

Joyfully for all devoted coffee lovers, the availability of freshly brewed [and not instant] coffee seems to be experiencing a resurgence in the British Isles. Establishments such as The Drury Tea & Coffee Co. Ltd., Costa Coffee, and those mentioned in Cosy Coffee Shops may provide the perfect outlet for one's coffee bean-fueled obsession.

[Photo of coffee with foam is from Java Junkie Coffee and photo of Keeping Up Appearances' Elizabeth and Emmett is from BBC Programs]

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