something to honk about
Can I ask all you decaf coffee drinkers out there to offer your opinion?
I never used to drink coffee. The caffeine has a strong effect on me and I can feel my heart pound if I have too much. I started drinking coffee two years ago because I quit smoking pot and I needed a ritual to replace it. Now I love the taste of coffee and I love the heat. I prefer dark roast. And I take it black, no sugar. I’ve tried drinking tea instead and I just don’t like it half as much. I like the taste of really, really strong coffee, so I make it strong and just have half a cup. Usually just once a day in the morning.
However, I certainly don’t need the caffeine. I just like the flavor and the ritual of preparing it and holding the warm cup in my hand as I sip. I was shopping at my local health food emporium the other day. I thought, I’ll just buy decaf – it’s still coffee, just without the caffeine. So I grabbed a bag and put it under the spout of the bulk bin and poured some out. But I smelled it and it didn’t have the same rich scent of regular coffee beans. I decided not to purchase it. I bought regular coffee again. YUM.
When I came home, I googled (on Bing, I always google on Bing) “how is coffee made into decaf”. Here is what wiki/Decaffeination has to say about it:
In the case of coffee, various methods can be used. The process is usually performed on unroasted (green) beans, and starts with steaming of the beans. They are then rinsed with a solvent that extracts the caffeine while leaving other constituents largely unaffected. The process is repeated from 8 to 12 times until the caffeine content meets the required standard (97% of caffeine removed according to the international standard, or 99.9% caffeine-free by mass per the EU standard). Coffee contains over 400 components important to the taste and aroma of the drink, making removal of caffeine while largely leaving the other constituents unaffected difficult.
Solvent sounds pretty bad. But let’s say I was willing to drink solvent residue in measure of one part per million with my decaf coffee. Let’s just say. For the sake of argument.
What I really want to know is – does decaf taste like regular coffee? Does it smell good like regular coffee when you brew it? Sure, I could answer that myself by getting a cup of decaf at a local shop or just buying a really small amount of beans and preparing them myself at home. That would be easy enough, I suppose. But I’d rather ask you all. What do you think? Do you drink decaf? Do you like it?