Most of us can’t make it through morning without our cup (or cups) of joe, and we’re not alone. Coffee is a global beverage: it’s grown commercially on four continents and consumed enthusiastically on all seven—and there is even an Italian espresso machine on the International Space Station. Coffee’s journey has taken it from the forests of Ethiopia to the fincas of Latin America, from Ottoman coffee houses to “Third Wave” cafés, and from the simple coffee pot to the capsule machine. In Coffee: A Global History, Jonathan Morris explains both how the world acquired a taste for this humble bean, and why the beverage tastes so differently throughout the world.
Sifting through the grounds of coffee history, Morris discusses the diverse cast of caffeinated characters who drank coffee, why and where they did so, as well as how it was prepared and what it tasted like. He identifies the regions and ways in which coffee has been grown, who worked the farms and who owned them, and how the beans were processed, traded, and transported. Morris also explores the businesses behind coffee—the brokers, roasters, and machine manufacturers—and dissects the geopolitics linking producers to consumers. Written in a style as invigorating as that first cup of Java, and featuring fantastic recipes, images, stories, and surprising facts, Coffee will fascinate foodies, food historians, baristas, and the many people who regard this ancient brew as a staple of modern life.
About the Author
Jonathan Morris is research professor at the University of Hertfordshire. He is an historian of consumption and consumer societies; coeditor of Coffee: The Comprehensive Guide to the Bean, the Beverage and the Industry; and a judge for the Specialty Coffee Association’s Best Product in Show awards.
"This is for the coffee nerd in your life. . . . It's jam-packed with information. I don't think I have read a book this information dense and yet still incredibly readable possibly ever. A great little book that I recommend highly. If you want a ton of history, a ton of information, a ton of background on coffee, this is a great gift."
— James Hoffmann, author of "The World Atlas of Coffee"
"With an engaging eye for detail the author explains how this dark and bitter beverage conquered the planet. . . . [A] fascinating read."
— OxVeg News
"The potential problem with any book about the history of coffee is that it might well cover a vast amount of things that people in the trade know already, and in a dry academic way. This one does cover all the expected history, but the enjoyable part of it is the entertaining sidelines which crop up here and there. . . . This little book is full of such gems. Coffee history does not have to be a dry subject!"
— Beverage Standards Association Newsletter
"Written by a professional historian, it is well structured to provide a clear explanation as to how this beverage has become widespread and popular across the world. It is full of fascinating information. . . . This is a book that provides a good amount of detail, but is still an easy read. . . . The history of coffee is not one that we would often consider, but it is good to learn more about the development of a drink that for many is an important part of their lives."
— Methodist Recorder