I’ve been a coffee lover for 20 years now. In my quest for a personal vice I’ve become an espresso lover.
While visiting a Starbucks [conveniently tucked inside a Chapters bookstore] I noticed someone else indulging in his espresso habit.
Holy hot espresso Batman …
This is not photo-shopped – the coffee cupping caped crusader apparently loves his latte!
This just in from the espresso trail files. This cost me 1 Euro 60
The espresso is ordered “noisette”and it comes with a little cookie and a shot of jus. Yay France.
Disclaimer – it also cost me the price of a plane ticket to Europe and 2 weeks accommodation
There is certainly more to life than writing about and searching out great wines. There is also espresso. As a rule I don’t usually perk up in the morning until my espresso.
I have a french press that permeates our house with dark roasted coffee aromas around 6:30 each morning – my personal coffee fairy usually does this for me (yes it is a perfect marriage). I meet my colleagues at school for an 8:30 espresso – the only civilized time of the day in the wonderful, yet crazy world of educating teenagers.
This summer I’m certain that my intake of espresso will reach an all time high. The thought of drinking coffee in Spain, Italy, and France has me in a complete tizzy. One simply cannot yield to tempation time and time again. Even the automated espresso dispensers in gas stations are worth the stop. They make an espresso that competes with anything you can get here in NAmerica.
For those of you looking for a few words about wine in this post all I can promise you is that I will “wash out” my espresso cup with grappa at least once in Italy this summer – but it won’t be first thing in the morning. I’m not that European.
The Italians are brilliant people. They have given the world so much culturally. Sure there’s Dante (Inferno – the feel good book of 1308) and Da Vinci (that Mona Lisa girl is just plain cute), but I am talking about their real gift to the world, their real expression of genius - Espresso and Biscotti (the cookie so nice they bake it twice). The Italians have made it perfectly acceptable to have cookies for breakfast! If that’s not enough – and that should be enough- they drink adorable superstrong tiny coffees all day long. That is an act of pure genius. Surely man can live on cookies and coffee alone.
I admit that when I visited Italy in the summer of 2008 I took far too many photos of my espresso – but the crema was so breathtaking I couldn’t help it. Oh the crema of Italian espresso.
Italian crema 2008
I did also discover the world of Barolo. A quick side trip from Genoa found us in the town of Alba, situated between Barbaresco and Barolo. A fantastic conversation with winemaker Sergio Rivetto left me with four great wines and considerably less room for credit on my Visa.
While I wait for my Barolo to age I am perfectly happy with my bright Barbera d’Alba wines that cost a fraction of the price and remind me of Phil’s balcony in Genoa overlooking the Mediterranean.
And don’t get me started about my precious Parmegianno Reggiano …