Coffee culture is described on Wikipedia as a social atmosphere that has the stimulant coffee as the main unifying factor. Basically, the “culture” is half coffee consumption and half the interactions that happen during coffee consumption gatherings.
To help give a better understanding of the culture, coffee buffs across the country break the history of their obsession with the stimulant into three primary generations – the first, second and third waves of coffee consumption. Each generation epitomizes a style of brewing and drinking that was popular among coffee drinkers of different times over the centuries.
The First Wave of Coffee Consumption
The first wave lasted almost two centuries between the 1800’s and late 1980’s. It is during this era that instant coffee was invented. This came about when Satori Kato, a Japanese American discovered coffee concentration by applying the tea dehydration process on coffee before patenting it.
The Second Wave of Coffee Consumption
This period of the coffee consumption evolution process focused more on improving the taste and quality of coffee. There was, however, much more to this wave than just revamping the flavor of the then everyone’s favorite beverage. It is during this period that terms like espresso, French press, latte an macchiato became known in America. Starbucks and other popular coffee shops that started in the 70’s are hugely credited for the growth and expansion of this wave.
The Third Wave of Coffee Consumption
The third and current generation of coffee consumption is primarily about appreciation of the drink. It is centered more on quality and value rather than the commercial aspect of coffee. Ability to trace the origin and other typically trivial details such as roasting method are highly appreciated among coffee buffs in this wave.
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