The Day I Fell In Love With Coffee

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In Paris, there are lovers on every cobblestone corner, regal weddings parading about locking their love on a chain link fence, and old married couples closing up the shop after a long day of work, interlocking fingers as they walk home.

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Love is in the air and cupid strikes when you least expect it to.

Even on a train…

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in a cafe…

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or on the street.

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Cupid can also strike in many different forms.

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Of the edible kind.

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On our third morning in Paris, my mom, sister, and I were lingering over a delicious breakfast before heading out to explore.

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My sister was downright giddy over how delicious her coffee was. We were running on negative 3 hours of sleep (yes you can have negative sleep!) and she was oddly chipper that morning. Surely it couldn’t have been from that 3 mile run before breakfast because I still thanked my lucky stars that I wasn’t going to be operating any heavy machinery anytime soon.

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Kristi loved the coffee so much I thought we might just stay in the restaurant all day, watching her order pot after pot of delicious French coffee.

Quite frankly, it was amusing to watch.

With each cup, her eyes lit up a bit more, the conversation became a bit more vivid, and I almost started to forget that I was sleep deprived myself. And the smell of that coffee was downright intoxicating. Illegal in some countries perhaps.

She was jumping circles around me…

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While I felt like I was hit by a truck.

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‘Ange, you HAVE to try this coffee. It is the best coffee I have ever tasted.’

I was slightly intrigued, but also a bit uninterested at the same time.

I also had visions of nasty, bitter coffee that I tried a couple times in my life. I never tasted any coffee that made me think I was missing out on anything.

Hence, uninterested.

However, I knew it would make her day if I tried her beloved coffee.

‘Sure’, I said with a sly smile, ‘I will try it, but I’m warning you, I am not a Coffee Drinker…’

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The coffee mug in front of me was full of piping hot coffee before I could even finish my sentence. She poured in some of my specially ordered soy milk and plunked a golden caramel cube of sugar into the mug, stirring it until just right. She had that look plastered all over her face like defeat was already hers.

I sniffed the air. It surely smelled delicious. Was it possible to get caffeine from the air? I chuckled to myself.

I took my first anxious sip, expecting my lips to quiver with repulsion, but instead I tasted creamy, comforting, and deeply rich coffee embracing each taste bud as it floated by.

There was a slight hint of caramel- a sweet note perhaps- that blended so well with the richness of the coffee I would have told you that someone sampled hundreds of coffee and sugar pairings to get it just right.

I mean, in France, this is someone’s job, right? Or better yet, an entire office building dedicated to workers sampling coffee and sugar pairings? I will pretend that it is just to humour myself.

As I sat there with my mom and sister, I took my first real sip of coffee. My insides tingled as the coffee traveled through my mouth and warmed my stomach like no other. It wasn’t coffee what I had tried years ago, it was an imposter, bitter sludge.

This, before me, was art.

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I expected to look down at my coffee and see Van Gogh’s Starry Night swirling away or the Mona Lisa tipping her cup at me with a sly smile.

And this was the day I fell in love with coffee.

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[See you for Part II: The French Press, on Tuesday.]

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{ 35 comments… read them below or add one }

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Debbie September 17, 2012

Is coffee good for you? I try to stick to only whole and organic foods, I love my roasted Mate Tea (with steamed almond milk) made into a latte but I’ve stayed away from coffee thinking it was not as healthy, is it?
Thanks, Debbie

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Nicole of Raspberry Stethoscope October 13, 2010

Angela, I am the same as you. I only remember coffee being bitter and gross, so maybe I should give it a chance?

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Erica October 12, 2010

Haha. I just loved this post.
Coffee is seriously amazing. :)

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Faith @ lovelyascharged October 12, 2010

Bahaha!!! I can’t imagine a life without coffee…I’ve been chugging it back since I was nine or ten! (Oops!) I guess I feel that way about tea though – it’s always been just kinda “meh” in my book, like a murky water :/

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Angela October 12, 2010

I love coffee. I have my own little individual cafetière. It makes it seem more special than just having a cup of instant. I don’t like sugar in it though which people seem to think is weird.

Must remember not to invite bloggers round to stay. My cheapo guest room furnature won’t take all the jumping on beds you guys do!

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Mary @ Bites and Bliss October 12, 2010

hahaha I love the story! Can’t say I’ll ever be much of as coffee drinker..but who knows, maybe I’ll switch over like you did :P

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Ashley M. [at] (never home)maker October 12, 2010

Hahah. You’re so cute, girl. I’m not a coffee drinker. Occasionally I’ll have a cup . . . and I’m SUPER productive. But I always, always, always get a headache. Hmm. My husband, on the other hand, LOVE his french press. So, I look forward to part II of your post <3

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lynn October 12, 2010

before long you will be affectionaly calling it “the day I became addictted”

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LizLivingVegan October 12, 2010

Haha I love the jumping on the bed as a result of the coffee drinking!!!! So cute :)

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erica October 12, 2010

as a coffee lover, i absolutely looove this post! welcome to the dark side :P
i need to go have some of that life changing coffee in paris!!

can’t wait for your french press post!

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Laura @ Backstage Pass October 12, 2010

Isn’t coffee fantastic? We have a terrific company here in Milwaukee called Alterra Coffee, and I very much enjoy learning about and tasting their exotic blends. It’s almost like trying different types of wine or fine spirits!
Thank you for this post and for showing all of the different examples of love you saw in Paris. It’s definitely the most romantic city in the world.

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Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga) October 12, 2010

I am such a coffee lover! Told you before that I have every possible gadget to make it: reg coffee maker, french press, espresso and cappucino maker, you name it, I have it!

Coffee makes me feel awesome. I look at life as I am vegan, I am GF, I dont eat much processed food if any, I make 95% of everything I eat from scratch…so if I wanna have coffee (or a drink!) I happily indulge :) Glad you fell in love too!!!

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Beth October 12, 2010

Angela, your post is amazing, I love coffee so much as well, great for runners :) I was wondering if you would mind sharing what hotel you stayed at in Paris? It looked so lovely, I want to stay there the next time I visit.

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Angela (Oh She Glows) October 12, 2010

We stayed at the Westin vendome. Got a crazy good deal with a travel agency, as it was way too expensive otherwise. Awesome hotel though and the breakfast was included each morning and it was truly amazing.

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Nichole October 12, 2010

I have always enjoyed coffee especially pumpkin spice lattes! I gave it up 2 years ago when I first became a prescatarian because I was drinking too much in the mornings and I was getting heartburn/acid reflux. Recently I started enjoying it again – sparingly. I would seriously love to enjoy the world’s best cup of coffee in Paris, someday!

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Ashley October 12, 2010

I’m a tiny bit obsessed with coffee! I’m also a bit of a coffee snob, I prefer coffee made from fresh ground coffee beans and I refuse to drink the nasty “coffee” they have here at my work. I bring in my own in a travel mug everyday. :)

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Amber K October 12, 2010

I have never been able to stand the taste of coffee no matter how much stuff I put in it to get rid of the taste. I can never taste anything but the awful coffee! But I bet it is different in France!

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Shanna October 12, 2010

French coffee is the absolute best. I loved going to the brasseries in the morning to casually enjoy my huge capuccino.

Welcome to the dark side..it’s lovely :)

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lisasfoods October 12, 2010

All it takes is just the right cup of coffee…

I’m not much of a coffee drinker, but when I travel to Europe or Quebec, I love to indulge because I find the coffee is so much better.

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Julie Grice October 12, 2010

I just fell in love with espresso while in Italy last week. Macchiatos, cappucinos… SO good!

But alas, I don’t have an espresso maker, so coffee will have to do. ;)

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Jodie October 12, 2010

Oh do I have something for you to try!! We roast our own beans, every week my husband pulls out the roaster (about the size of a coffee maker) for the week’s fresh beans. We buy green beans (fair trade, organic) at a fraction of the cost and we have the freshest best coffee ever! Check out this site for your new obsession http://www.coffeeismydrugofchoice.com
Welcome to the wonderful world of coffee mmmmm………..

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Angela (Oh She Glows) October 12, 2010

That sounds awesome. I will have to look into that… :)

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skinnyrunner October 12, 2010

this is quite possibly the best love story ive ever read. i love coffee. i want to marry it.

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Felicia October 12, 2010

Oh how I love a cup of french pressed coffee made with a comforting breakfast like steel cut oats with apples, cinnamon, and walnuts. Perfect for the fall! Love a good cup of coffee :)

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Camille October 12, 2010

It is now one of my life goals to try French coffee!

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Tina October 12, 2010

I look forward to my mornings! A cup of coffee & Google reader. I don’t think tea would be the same! I only drink it in the AM and then its tea the rest of the day & at night.

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Sarah October 12, 2010

Mmmm…I am a lover of great coffee, too. I’m looking forward to part 2!

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jaime October 12, 2010

Such a cute post! I believe coffee makes the world a better place!

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Claire (Low Impact Fashionista) October 12, 2010

Oh no you have been bitten by the coffee bug…once you start drinking coffee you can never stop! I always try to stop and switch exclusively to tea…and I always fail :) It’s ok though because I love coffee! One or two cups a day won’t kill me right?

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Rachel October 12, 2010

hehe I love this post. :) Coffee is my savior

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Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin October 12, 2010

Welcome to the dark side! ;)

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melissa @ the delicate place October 12, 2010

i have to be honest, i only got espresso after the meal and never had french press while i was there so i cannot attest. however, my husband has an espresso maker from italy (we both went but at different times), our drip maker and a bodum french press. we’re a bit obsessed ;)

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Sunshine [at] The Culinary Vampire October 12, 2010

I feel the same way about coffee for the same reasons you described. However, I love a good cafe con leche – creamy, sweet, with just a hint of coffee – Yum!

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Samantha Angela @ Bikini Birthday October 12, 2010

Cafe, je t’adore.

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Jil @ Peace, Love & Munchies October 12, 2010

LOVE!!! haha and love the jumping on the beds!

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