Debunking the double-double lie
// Marco Ferreira

Sadly, for most of us, the first time we have sex isn't as satisfying as we might have hoped. After that, it's probably not going to get good for a while still. Odds are your first satisfying sexual encounter will blow your mind open to the true world of sexual experience, and you will never think of sex the same way again. The sex you used to have, you now realize that you were only doing because it was nice and you just didn't know any better. Good sex ruins you for bad sex, because you will always know how much sweeter it can get. The same can be said after drinking a properly prepared cup of coffee after so many visits to Tim Hortons.

All around us, citizens are going about their day drinking cups of burnt-tasting sludge. As children, most of us didn't like coffee – it smells complex, looks mysterious, and tastes strong, like grandpa’s underarms. As social convention deems us old enough to carry a Starbucks cup around the mall, we start to force ourselves to sip it anyway. Everyone else is doing it, it must be important to do. This is the perseverance stage, when we endure the unsatisfying coffee, more a cup of cream and sugar, for the ends: the caffeine kick and the appearance of maturity. For most of us, caffeine dependence, like the necessity of the occasional orgasm, drives our addiction to coffee, at least for part of our lives. That is, until we have our first truly finger-in-asshole-knee-shaking-simultaneous-orgasm cup of coffee and see what we've been missing all along.

Drinking coffee should be done primarily for its delicious taste. The caffeine kick is an added bonus, or a nice reminder, like the after-glow of an orgasm. So many people drinking coffee for the caffeine is a travesty.

According to Statscan, Canadians consume 14 billion cups of coffee every year. Coffee is also the number one food service beverage in Canada, and has a relatively high profit margin. According to Doug Fisher, president of Toronto food service consulting firm FHG International, in an interview with National Post, “Post-mixed [machine-dispensed] soft drinks and coffee make huge amounts of money on per-cup sales. So where a hamburger may have a 25 per cent food cost, a $1 coffee might cost [a restaurant] 18¢ or 16¢ a cup.”

As coffee is Canada's number one drink of choice, big companies are scrambling to be the one filling your cup. Now Starbucks, McDonalds, Tim Hortons, and even Wendy’s all offer similar quality brewed coffee, and both Tim Hortons and McDonalds have expanded to espresso drinks, which are also growing in popularity.

In a recent article in the Globe and Mail, the four coffee-to-go juggernauts had their brews blind-tasted by a group of reputable coffee enthusiasts. The only result that matters, aside from Starbucks coming in dead fucking last with their heinous Pike Place roast, is that all of these coffees were, of course, shit. These large companies roast their sub-par beans in massive batches, infusing them with a burnt taste and removing any possibility of quality flavour. People who understand coffee aren't pretentious, just informed; so I think it's time Canadians paid closer attention and stopped fuelling our burnt, sour, shit-filled toilet of a coffee industry any further. It's easier than you would think to make great-tasting coffee at home, and I guarantee you will be pleased with how much better it drinks.

First, you're going to need to go out and buy a French press. The French press is a good choice for making coffee because the metal filter lets through oils in the coffee that lend themselves well to taste. Those shitty paper filters take the oils out of coffee, so why the fuck are you even going to drink it? A French press is a one-time purchase and you can get a decent four-cup for around $20.

You then need a coffee grinder. A good one can be useful in achieving a consistent grind, but a cheap one will work, so that's going to cost like $15. Now, get some fancy-ass beans; you can get a nice half-pound of coffee for around $10. I recommend a medium roast. That's around a $45 entry cost, and that half-pound of coffee you bought is going to provide about 21 six-ounce cups of coffee.

Now I'm going to actually blow your mind. When your coffee doesn't taste like actual shit, you don't need to cover up how fucking awful it tastes with cream, and you aren't going to need to load it up with sugar like Mary Poppins, either. So it's also much better for you, with coffee alone containing negligible calories. Not only that, but freshly ground beans carry some important vitamins and minerals that you are certainly not getting from a double-double. According to the USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference, freshly ground coffee contains calcium, magnesium, potassium, and delicious phosphorus, as well as being a good source of riboflavins (vitamin B2).

Here's how to make a tasty cup of coffee properly and quickly: Put some water on to boil and grind your beans into a coarse consistency. A coarse grind looks like a fine grind, but more coarse. You're going to want to use about a third of a cup of coffee if you have an eight-cup French press. Some people like to stir their boiled water and preheat everything but that shit is for coffee maniacs and we are just coffee learners. Once your water is boiled, give it a minute to cool down a bit. Now drop the ground coffee into the French press and start a four-minute timer. Pour the hot water on top, filling up the carafe (body of the press). At the three-minute mark give the coffee that's floated to the top a stir and then put the top of the French press on to keep the heat in. Take this time to go do something else. Smoke a joint to open up the taste buds of your minds-eye, or drink a glass of water to prepare your body for the extreme dehydration and diarrhea that comes from drinking 8 cups of coffee in a row. Now get all French and press that shit down. You’re fucking done! You did it! And you didn't even need to buy it from an egg-sandwich and doughnut serving fast-food restaurant that also smells like disinfectant! Plus it's going to taste great, and after your first sip I think you'll agree that you've been drinking it wrong this whole time.

People frequenting Starbucks and other sub-par “fast” “food/coffee” establishments speak volumes to how as a society we need to be doing as much we can for ourselves and sharing the knowledge of how to do these things with one another, particularly things as easy as making our own coffee. If you drink it every day, why keep yourself dependent on other people to make it for you? Pack your lunch, cook for yourself, knit a pair of jeans, build a house, the possibilities are endless! Empower yourself. Start with coffee.

//Marco Ferriera, Opinions Editor

//Author Illustration

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