Coffee is thought to have been discovered by an Ethiopian tribe in 1000 AD. They noticed that grinding up coffee berries with animal fat gave them an energy boost. Over the following centuries, coffee – and the ways in which to drink it – has exploded around the world, and beyond (In 2014, astronauts on the international space station brought the first ever espresso machine into outer space).
But why do we love it so much? It could have something to do with caffeine – the chemical that coffee beans produce naturally. High amounts of caffeine increase the level of dopamine in your blood stream (the happy hormone) which may explain why the average person drinks 3.5 cups of the stuff every day.
But how best to drink coffee? And if you don’t have time to make it at home, where’s best for a hot cup of joe? For coffee-lovers looking to up their game, here’s everything you need to know:
The perfect cup in five steps:
Brew at the right temperature:
Most baristas agree that coffee should be brewed at approximately 93 degrees Celsius. Too hot and coffee tastes bitter. Don’t have a thermometer at home? Once your kettle has boiled pull it off the heat and weight five minutes for the perfect temperature.
Warm your mug:
If you pour hot coffee into a cold ceramic mug, it will pull the heat from your brew leaving it tepid and unpleasant. Instead, rinse your cups with hot water first.
Clean your kettle/coffee machine:
It may sound obvious, but kettles and coffee machines often go years before being cleaned. While boiling water does indeed kill germs and bacteria, it does little to stop the build-up of salt and calcium (which comes from tap water). Depending on usage, clean your machine 2 to 3 times a year.
Use freshly roasted beans or ground coffee:
Did you know coffee has a shelf life? While drinking coffee that’s been in the cupboard too long won’t hurt you, it will certainly affect the taste. Coffee should be used within 30 days of roasting and if pre-ground, stored in a dark air-tight container.
Don’t be stingy with the coffee:
Experts agree that the standard measure for brewing coffee for proper strength is two level tablespoons per cup. Use any less coffee and more water and the brew will turn bitter.
THE BEST CUPS IN DUBAI
No time to make it yourself? Try one of these coffee experts instead.
A neighbourhood café in the heart of the mall. The perfect place for people to watch or have a chat with the friendly staff. There’s a menu to perk you up and keep your cholesterol down. And the coffee is tip top.
Where to find it: Level 2, Tel: 050-4781094
Classic and luxurious, the lobby lounge of the Kempinski Hotel Mall of the Emirates celebrates the European tradition of a Grande café in the heart of the city.
Where to find it: Ground Floor, Tel: 04-3410000
Discovered by Louis XIV in 1682, Dalloyau served the Court of Versailles until the French revolution. Today, the regal restaurant serves some of the finest coffee, macaroons, and chocolates.
Where to find it: Level 2, Tel: 04-3350255
Emporio Armani Caffe
A brand that needs no introduction, the coffee is made with organic beans (in keeping with other Emporio Armani Caffe’s around the world).
Where to find it: Level 2, Tel: 04-3410591
Because one is never enough… Second cup specialises in delectable coffee in a unique variety of styles and flavours.
Where to find it: Level 1, Tel: 04-3410803