On a busy Thursday, my mom and I took time off from everything and went to the Black Cow Coffee Company. We passed through the glass door to see a large counter full of baked goods. To the left of the room was an oval-shaped oak table and wooden chairs at one side, with small red lamps, a little table by the window, and an old black piano.
On the other side of the room were about five small tables, placed near another large window. This is where we sat, after we bought a cinnamon doughnut and cup of coffee with hazelnut flavoring (my mom never drinks coffee, but this was an Artist Date, so she did something different than usual).
In the very corner of the room, we spotted a shiny machine. A man standing beside it poured coffee beans into it, and at the front of the machine was a large basin that turned many of the dark brown beans slowly (it turns out this is a cooling process). We asked the man’s name, and he told us it was Cole Rivers, which I thought sounded like a famous person’s name if ever there was one. Then we asked Cole what the machine did, and he said it roasted the coffee beans. He scooped up some raw beans to show us what they look like before they are roasted. This is the point at which I began to question life, the universe, and everything.
Which brings us to:
← General Bean Information
Coffee comes from everywhere. It’s grown in at least 70 countries. I, for one, didn’t know coffee is grown everywhere from India to Ethiopia (the place coffee was first discovered) to Hawaii.
People drink it all the time.
Everyone knows what it is.
So how did I not know that unroasted coffee looks green? Yup. Green. (Kind of the color of green tea.)
The raw beans are then put into a coffee roasting machine, which turns them dark brown.
Since the machine was very beautiful, I took many pictures of it, especially because it looked like a steampunk train, or perhaps a control panel or a time machine.
After taking many of pictures of the machine, I finally ate some of that earlier-mentioned doughnut. But it was only a matter of minutes until I was taking pictures again. And I took pictures of everything. Take me literally when I say this.
While we’d been eating, some just-roasted coffee beans had been emptied into the basin. Unfortunately, I didn’t get any pictures of that part of the process, because it only lasted for about three seconds. While I took more various pictures, this happened a second time, which I missed, again. It turned out that this momentous moment would only happen again in another 20 minutes. And so we waited.
I looked at everything on their counter and wandered around the room, and as I did this (to no surprise) a poem was written on a coffee sleeve, based off the conversation of two people sitting nearby.
Not too much later (although it was 20 minutes, I suppose) the beans were done roasting,
the machine was emptied,
and I got some pretty cool pictures.
After a lovely afternoon, we were done at the coffee shop and ready to go home. You know, for like… real food. Doughnuts for lunch will only take you so far.
It’s awesome that we got to spend some time at the Black Cow. It was fun to hang out, I learned a little something about coffee, and I got some new photographs, more of which you can see in my photo-set Steampunk Coffee Shop.
Oh, and if anyone knew about raw coffee beans already… well, you’re amazing. Share that amazingness, or your utter shock (or perhaps a coffee poem) in the comments below, or maybe just drink a cup.
Photos and post by Sonia Joie.