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coffee trends: Coffee … The Final Frontier


October 29, 2008
By Brian Martell

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If you ever surf the Internet about coffee, you’ll note that among the many blogs, websites and news groups (at least, those that remain) there is an underlying common denominator between technology fans, adventurists and coffee geeks: they are usually one and the same person.

 

If you ever surf the Internet about coffee, you’ll note that among the many blogs, websites and news groups (at least, those that remain) there is an underlying common denominator between technology fans, adventurists and coffee geeks: they are usually one and the same person.
Passion about coffee also transcends to those who are really curious about the physical world that surrounds us; and perhaps in no small part, they need the extra boost of caffeine to keep awake while they explore the science fiction and science fact.
To help them blend their two passions, there is a plethora of high-tech coffee related products out there, ranging from hand-pumped portable espresso makers for the camping crowd, to the latest in precise brewing apparatus that will automatically roast, grind and brew your coffee all before you wake up in the morning.
And when it comes to those who sell or promote coffee on the Internet, a quick scan of sites that have a connection between space and coffee kick back a couple of thousand hits. There is even a group of students from Costa Rica who have developed a coffee brewer designed to work in the zero gravity of outer space.
This would have come in handy for the first astronauts to drink coffee in space during the Apollo 11 mission back in 1969. That flight crew actually had coffee on their meal plan – but one could only guess it was to coffee what Tang is to orange juice.
Looking back to those old news clips of mission control and the scores of men and women manning the consoles in aid of the lunar landing, they all seemed to have one thing in common – a cup of coffee in their hands. It could be said that coffee and Wernher Von Braun were instrumental in getting man on the moon
p30_earthSo why the connection?
There must be something about our beloved beverage that screams “adventure.” Image Indiana Jones standing by a raging river in the Amazon basin at dawn with a steaming hot tin cup in his hand. Would anyone think that he’s gulping back Jasmine Green Tea with a twist of lemon?
Perhaps coffee has a Walter Mitty effect on people, where they can get lost in the fantasy of being someone they’re not; perhaps it just goes very well with real life adventures. Camping, for example, just isn’t camping (no matter how extreme) without a good hot cup of coffee in the morning.
As mentioned above, a company out of upstate New York is marketing a lightweight hand-held espresso maker that works on pressure (not steam) so you can get a decent shot even if you’re 500 miles away from an electrical outlet, let alone a certified barista.
So, since coffee has been with human adventure for as long as we’ve been able to brew it, it stands to reason that the ultimate adventure will have coffee as a cast member. Virgin Galactic, which is currently booking trips on Space Ship II, have not yet made plans to offer in flight (or should we say sub orbit) coffee on their excursions to outer space, but it is just a matter of time before they hook up with the students from Costa Rica.
Now for all you Sci-Fi tea drinkers out there, you may be saying to yourself “Hey! Jean-Luc Picard was a tea drinker!” And the answer is yes, he was. But James T. Kirk was a coffee drinker and his frequent nemeses, the Klingons, have coffee transliterated into kafei, which they adopted as a formidable beverage.
Adventure seems to have followed coffee or vice versa. The way coffee made it to the New World is an adventure in itself and worthy of a novel. So as we look to the skies and beyond for mankind’s next big adventure it’s certain that we’ll be taking coffee along for the ride.

Questions or comments? Visit Brian at www.heritage-coffee.com

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