ESPRESSO TO GO | 5 reasons why coffee is good for the soul
An ode to coffee, and the many ways it makes us happy. Plus: our favourite independent coffee-makers
Coffee, how do we love thee? Let us count the ways. Life’s eternal feel-good drink brings with it a string of upbeat connotations, from beautiful cafetières (the perfect gift) to the comforting waft of a fresh brew on the morning light.
In fact, coffee and the whole ritual around it is indelibly linked to some of life’s most poignant moments. A dashed cuppa at the airport, just hours before a flight. The steamy windows of a local café on a rainy afternoon, with a flat white, a notepad and your first time alone in months. One-handed coffee jiggling a cranky baby, or coffee over a longed-for catchup with a friend.
Here are a few more reasons why coffee rocks our world – along with a rundown of the small coffee labels we love…
Coffee = quality time with loved ones
Ever since Central Perk hit our screens in the 90s, the role of the coffee shop has taken on warm and fuzzy vibes. In our collective imaginations, we’ll all have some kooky neighbourhood spot where we can gather the Joeys or Phoebes of our lives to simply hang out and break down the day.
Reality, of course, doesn’t leave room for such musings; but it does make those snatched coffee-with-friends moments all the more special when they do happen. Kind of like the 90s all over again.
Object Story pick | Hand-thrown ceramic tumbler
Coffee is an elixir for colder months
We love an iced coffee as much as the next sun-searcher; but nothing beats the warming balm of a coffee on an autumn or winter afternoon. Perhaps it’s something in a steamy cup of goodness, or the pep that’s promised in a stronger brew. Either way, coffee is a veritable antidote to the colder months of the year. Little wonder scientists have found it boosts mood during this time.
Coffee comes with a dash of ceremony
From a beautifully sculpted English walnut coffee scoop to an Enamel coffee drip kettle, coffee is a good excuse to roll out your finest accessories. If you have the time, you can make a bit of a song and dance of it, with napkins, candles, a vaseful of flowers and some treats – for example, a slice of rhubarb cake – on the side.
Object Story pick: Stainless steel pouring kettle
Coffee is good for memory and focus
Coffee can enhance memory, say scientists from John Hopkins University; and the effect is so profound that we feel more focused just by thinking about the stuff, Canadian researchers found. This will come as zero surprise to those of us who feel instantly more alert with a warming brew in our hands (plus, it’s the ultimate procrastination technique; your work can only start once you have coffee in place).
Coffee helps you travel the world
Colombia, Ethiopia, Brazil, Sumatra. Coffee can take you all over the world in just one gulpful. If you have an inner geek itching to break free, there’s plenty of knowledge to get your teeth into here, in terms of varieties of roasts, the importance of single estate beans and different production techniques. It’s also worth doing your research in order to support fairer and more transparent trade, in line with coffee farmers worldwide.
Object Story pick: Reusable coffee cup
5 small coffee producers we love
A great coffee community that cares for its people and the planet; 1% of all sales are donated to environmental causes.
These folks are rightfully proud of their “hero coffee” range; ethically sourced and perfectly roasted, for door-to-door delivery.
James Gourmet Coffee
A family-run roasting company that pours its heart into quality coffee. Its organic line is particularly tasty.
Golden Sheep Coffee
A regular at Stroud Farmers’ Market in Object Story’s home town, Golden Sheep Coffee is ethically sourced, with blends named after local areas (Worley Ridge, Coaley Peak, Forty Acre Lane and Butterrow Hill).
This great coffee outlet trades directly with farming communities, and each of its delicious destination blends – from Brazil to Cameroon – features details of the family that produced it.