2022-08-17

COFFEE: Myths, Trivia and Facts

Coffee is a subject that many consumers love but don’t talk much about. As a result, coffee has generated its fair share of myths and trivia.

Let’s look at the some of the facts regarding the myths and trivia.

For Your Information…

COFFEE HOUSES AND SHOPS

Coffee houses and shops are a modern invention, right? Wrong! King Charles II of England initiated a ban on coffee houses in 1675. He feared that his enemies were meeting in these establishments to plot against him.

MOCHA = CHOCOLATE

Wrong. Most people associate mocha with a chocolate-coffee combination but the reality is that “Mocha” is the name of a port in Yemen. Coffee beans from Africa are transported through this port. “Mocha” has more to do with the origin of the beans than whether or not it contains chocolate.

US CITIZENS CONSUME MORE COFFEE THAN ANYONE ELSE

True! US citizens love their coffee and consume some 400 million cups of java every day.

ESPRESSO, CAPPUCCINO AND LATTE

Espresso does not refer to a type of coffee bean. It refers to the way coffee is prepared. Espresso is made by forcing a small amount of hot water through very finely ground beans. This process produces a highly concentrated form of coffee.

Cappuccino and lattes are coffee drinks made with espresso as the base. Cappuccino refers to the frothy, peaked, white topping that resembles the white hood of the Capuchin friar’s habit. On the other hand, latte is made with espresso and steamed milk without the topping.

COFFEE COMES FROM VINES GROWN IN THE GROUND

Wrong! Coffee grows on trees that can live up to 100 years. Each tree yields about one pound of coffee a year once they start producing beans (sometime during their fifth year). It takes approximately 2000 raw coffee beans to make a pound of coffee.

WHERE DID A “CUP OF JOE” COME FROM?

In the early 1900s, Admiral Josephus “Joe” Daniels banned alcohol on all Navy ships. As a result, sailors turned to coffee as their drink of choice. The sailors ultimately coined the term ‘a cup of Joe’ when referring to coffee in remembrance of his restrictions on alcohol.

ONE BEAN OR TWO?

Did you know that coffee berries or raw coffee beans are round and smooth. During the roasting process, they split in half. So the coffee beans you see in a package of un-ground coffee are actually half-beans.

WHAT’S THE CONNECTION BETWEEN OIL AND COFFEE?

Next to oil, coffee is the second largest traded commodity in the world.

COFFEE CAN BOOST MEMORY

Studies indicate that this is not a myth. In 2005, a study indicated that coffee does improve memory. A subsequent study not ony supported the initial results but concluded that the memory enhancing effects could be long-term.

COFFEE IS A DELICIOUS AND EFFECTIVE COOKING SPICE: RIGHT OR WRONG

Surprising as it is, the statement is true. Though considered a new spice, chefs and cooks in the know have used coffee as a spice for some time. Whether used as an ingredient in main dishes, cakes, pies, ice creams or rubs, coffee can create a whole new level of deliciousness in your dishes.

Coffee is surrounded by all kinds of lore. Some of it is myth. Some of it is fact. And some is just plain tasty fun. Enjoy your next cup of Joe!

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