Since I mentioned the ‘God coffee’ in a previous blog, it has aroused a certain degree of curiosity from my readers. No one has heard of it. Not even Google. Search for the term and the gods of cyberspace give you Starbuck’s markets more ‘anti-God’ coffee cups (sounds more exciting than it is), a Welcome to God’s Coffee store, followed by images for God’s coffee (characters genuflecting in front of a giant coffee maker) and a blog posting entitled, The false god of coffee tracking one man’s attempt to stop drinking it. Tap in the word ‘God shot’ however and you get what I may be talking about (thank you @relishcornwall).
The ‘God coffee’ is neither Starbuck’s, nor is it a shop, a cartoon or one man’s pilgrimage to a caffeine-free existence.
It is time for the stone to be rolled back. I have seen the ‘God coffee’ once only. On a graph. I have neither made one nor tasted one.
I knew that coffee was complicated but I didn’t know that it was three hours of complicated, after which I still felt ill-qualified to produce a decent cup. I also didn’t expect my training with Monmouth to be so esoteric and it delighted the writer in me. Give something a narrative and I can follow it; with every subsequent coffee I ever make or drink I will be hooked: is this the holy grail of beans? My china nirvana? Morning salvation?
Adam’s interpretation of it went something like this: he drew a line on which all coffee exists. It begins at sour/fruity/acid at one end and ends in bitter, nutty, alkali at the other. In the middle is ‘good’ coffee, where most cups should sit and as a barista, you should be happy with this. Good coffee is cocoa, marzipan, velvety, caramel.
‘God coffee’ is off the graph; little X’s dotted around the good. Completely off the line. It is, in Adam’s words: “serendipitous”, “when the X-factors come together”, “religious” and a “happy accident.” He has only tasted two in his time and claims that, “When you serve it to a customer you can see it on their face.”
The training was excellent but all I could think of was the celestial connection while we tamped, dosed and ground. ‘Stretching’ milk felt mildly miraculous but nothing when compared to the ‘God coffee’. I want to thank Adam but I also feel frustrated with him. It’s similar to saying that a writer, if all the correct co-ordinates are in place, could churn out a few words of Shakespeare, Joyce, James. I think writers aspire to Shakespeare, absorb him even, but don’t actually want to reproduce him. It’s enough just to know that somewhere, some form of perfection may exist, even just as a point of reference, as a book on a shelf, but I’m not expecting to convert the masses any time soon.
Raving looney caffeine-spiel in which case we should all be reading the ‘false god of coffee’ or are you a convert to the church of coffee? Spiritual guidance needed please.