Mediterranean cookery expert and coffee aficionada Claudia Roden once related the story of a Viennese man who loved java and conversation. Early in the day he found a seat and ordered his cup, which inevitably led to a convivial discussion for most of the morning. Suddenly he looked at the clock and asked his friends, “Would you mind saving my seat while I nip home for a cup of coffee.”
Honest evaluation brings one to the realization that only the best restaurants can cook a dinner better than one can fix for oneself. So also I have suspected for some time that I can make a better cup of coffee at home than I can find at popular coffee houses.
Last weekend I discovered an out of the way spot in the warehouse district nor far from the state line and Southwest Trafficway in Kansas City. A friend called it a “toy shop for coffee lovers,” and I found this aphorism to be as accurate as it had been intriguing. About the Coffee is the name of the place, and I believe it is now one of my go-to places for adventure. I saw coffee making devices previously unknown, interesting conversation with fellow coffee snobs and emerged with a Sowden Softbrew Oskar coffee maker/server that is wonderful.
I have been using the Sowden for a week and have not been disappointed (except by human error in grinding beans too finely). It is the easiest good method of brewing coffee that I have found. Now I can easily nip home for a cup of coffee! All I need to add is the good conversation!
Do you remember when we were young and free from concerns of time and place, and when we would encounter eternal moments by chance? We would drive east along prairie highways that rolled and snaked through broad meadows of tall bleached corn stalks, fenced by wooded domes and moated by crumbling gullies.
It was during the literal hour our folks taught us to call evening. Behind us, the retiring sun reddened every shiny facet of flora that had invisibly reflected the sunlight at noon. Now it gave creation a Sleepy Hollow cast, and we sped through together, alone, without fear, intent on capturing the treasured moment forever. But we envied Katrina Van Tassel her realm and longed to sample apple dumplings in their dappled syrup that ran down our chins. If we stopped, we would don sweaters and hold one another close as the spin of the earth stole our golden moment, though it remained in our memories.
Today I uncovered those memories by chance and glimpsed again those gilded fields when I felt the first crisp air of autumn rush by my face, and felt the longing to drive east again with you.