The right mix for a cup of coffee 17/07/2012

I never knew  ordering a cup of coffee over the house phone in a hotel  would pose a problem  to the person at the other end.  Two cups of coffee please, I said and added ‘hot’ as an after thought as I liked  to have  the beverage piping hot. Yes, it arrived  after a quarter of an hour. As I poured  from the flask into the cup, it looked  dark as dark could be and I knew  it would  be too bitter for my taste. I picked up the phone and most politely said I  preferred my coffee light or moderate and requested  the coffee to be replaced with a lighter version. ‘Madam, we serve our customers light coffee, since you particularly wanted it ‘dark’, I made it so’ replied the man promptly. How could hot be mistaken for dark, I wondered  but was in no mood to argue  with the man.

The next morning  when I ordered for coffee  I took care not to use any prefix lest  the mistake ( whose I wonder) was repeated. The coffee arrived and  when I  undid the cork, the  aroma  was too strong for my comfort. I asked the waiter to take it back and get me light coffee. The man disappeared with the stuff and before that he said I should ask for ‘decoction and milk separate.’ Thanking him for the advise   I  headed  towards the phone  to place the order once again and heard  the  phone ringing.The  caller appeared  perplexed and fore stalled me saying  the only way to solve the problem of my coffee was to send me decoction and milk separately so that I could  mix the way I wished!

Coming to think of it I feel  hotels  should follow the British system  of three in one(tray) –hot milk in a  kettle/flask, decoction and sugar in their respective porcelain/ stainless steel  containers.

n.meera raghavendra rao  


7 thoughts on “The right mix for a cup of coffee 17/07/2012

  1. V Raghavan

    Rightly so, milk, decoction and sugar should be in separate containers. The strength of the decoction can vary from place to place. My mother (and later my sisters) used to make the decoction so strong that a few drops of it in a cup of milk were adequate to produce a dark brown color!.

    1. Some prefer light/medium coffee and others strong and dark . The first can be prepared with pure coffee powder and the second with chicory mixed coffee powder ,which gives the dark brown colour .

  2. V Raghavan

    My folks were not using chicory powder. It is just the way they make the decoction, which makes it strong. You can put fewer drops of it to get light/medium coffee.

    1. Those were the days when coffee percolators or coffee makers were unknown .But still with the several choices available , none can compete with the traditional coffee filter which turns out aromatic ‘Tanjore degree filter coffee ‘ even today!

  3. B. Ramesh Rau

    I have developed strong views on coffee of late, so after experimentation my brew is Plantatin A and B in equal quantities mixed with 10% Chicory. The chicory gives coffee the slightly bitter taste and enhances the flavur according to me.. I dont know if I can mention that I buy coffee seeds from Coffe Day and get it ground and use it. (You can delete the name if its not allowed).
    We went to a Home stay in Virajpet (COORG) in a Coffee estate recently and it was very nice but since the estate was very steep and Hilly we couldnt go around it.
    The second disappointment was the terrible coffee – (Advana we would say in Kannada) – because all we got was a cheap sachet of instant and powderes milk to be mixed with the hot water heated in an electric kettle in the pantry attached to the room.
    I asked the owner – a really nice chap – how could a Coffe Planter give us such terrible coffe while his wife gave us such good breakfast and really delicious Dinner?
    He promised decoction coffee with the next day breakfast but though the milk was hot the decoction was cold. Atleast I had to admit he tried.
    The irony was that the Coffee planter himself never drank coffe!

  4. sundera Gopalan

    Meera I think people who have a good taste for coffee only can make good Coffee Some how I don’t like the Star Buck coffee though my daughter loves it.I make coffee decoction in the traditional coffee filter and all my friends say that the cdffee I serve at home is the best coffee they had so far.What do you think Meera?

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