Back in my twenties, I used to like coffee. Drank it quite regularly. Natasha and I even joined one of those mail-order coffee clubs. Several times, as a matter of fact, so that we could keep getting their free-if-you-join stuff. A couple of coffeemakers and several cup-and-saucer sets, if my memory serves me right.
I was always partial to tea, though. One day – or, possibly, it happened gradually – I lost my taste for coffee. Simply stopped liking it, without much of a reason. And for the last dozen of years or so, I exclusively drank tea, both as a pick-me-up-in-the-morning brew and an end-of-dinner beverage. American colleagues remained perpetually bewildered, French waiters contorted their faces into expressions of utter disdain, but I carried on.
Natasha occasionally still had a cappuccino or an espresso at restaurants, but our house reserves of coffee eventually dwindled to a single jar of some instant blend, largely waiting for a guest professing his addiction to the product.
When an explanation of my no-coffee attitude was required, I would say that I believe coffee to be an acquired taste. And whatever you may acquire, you may lose just as well. Ergo, my taste for coffee was lost.
On our first night on Costa Brava, when our friends Arthur and Anya suggested that we sit down at a cafe for some cava and coffee, I suddenly decided to try what everybody else was having. We ordered cortadas, an espresso with a dash of hot milk. And I suddenly thought to myself: Damn, that’s one exquisite drink!
I tried it several times in the ensuing couple of days and was pleasantly surprised every time that I continued to like the drink. Next thing you know, Natasha and I are discussing buying one of those latest high-tech espresso machines for the house…
And that was a short story about how I recovered my taste for coffee products.