pragueBlog

2006-04-01  

Recently Scott asked, what's the matter with decaf coffee? I don't have anything against it. If it's decent quality. The store bought kind in these parts isn't any good though. I was reminded of this when I came across a post about the history of coffee. Why did instant coffee become so ubiquitous in the US? Apparently the army is to blame, which had been sluicing forms of instant-like coffee down soldiers' throats since the mid 19th-century in an attempt to end the rum ration. Raw deal! So anyway,

...Instant Coffee did not disappear at the end of WWII. Instead, millions of soldiers and nurses returned with a Proustian association of linking the taste of instant (coffee) with some of their most vivid life experiences. Domestic consumption skyrocketed, and by 1958, one third of America's coffee was instant.

It must have been something similar only more intense in Britain. While I lived there I never, ever once saw a cup of coffee brewed from actual ground, roasted, real coffee in a traditional sense. Everyone drank instant and there were even cafes that had freaking Nescafe on the menu. If somebody invited you for coffee it was understood that it was Nescafe. If it was meant to impress, it would be Nescafe Gold.

Steve | 13:24 |
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