Bookspiration · Food & Cooking

Bookspiration: Uncommon Grounds

I’ve finally finished the behemoth book Uncommon Grounds, and am happy to say that I learned a lot. It’s quite possible my coworkers don’t feel the same joy I do, since upon starting the book I’ve been spouting out all kinds of random facts to them.Β  In my defense, we are in the coffee business, so telling them interesting things I learned should be perfectly acceptable. I also should get an award for finishing the giant coffee history book, but perhaps that’s just my opinion.

Anyway, in honor of Uncommon Grounds I wanted to do a coffee tasting (I may or may not do coffee tastings all the time, but that’s beside the point πŸ˜‰ ). I chose to give the medium roast coffee, Guatamala Antigua, a try. I tried this Starbucks coffee in a French press when I first started working as a barista, and after it was mentioned briefly in Uncommon Grounds, I thought I should give it another go. My palette for coffee tasting has improved a bit, so I was hoping to be able to recognize the notes of cocoa and soft spice this time around. Because the Guatamala Antigua pairs well with caramel, I decided to try it with one of my favorite treats: Stroopwafles!

20140428-190055.jpgI found some stroopwafles at my local grocery store, and though they weren’t the brand I normally get, I purchased them. The last time I went to the fabulous DeBoer Bakery in Holland, MI, a cashier recommended putting a stroopwafle on top of a cup of coffee or tea so that the caramel in the center would warm up, so that was a must for this tasting.

20140428-190107.jpgAfter waiting for the press to finish, it was finally time to try my pairing. I poured some coffee into my cup and set a stroopwafle on top. In that moment, it was like dreams were coming true. *sighs happily* I smelled the coffee and slurped it, noticing the medium body and acidity of the roast. Then, I tried a bite of my stroopwafle and…MY DREAMS WERE DASHED! The stroopwafle tasted quite stale, and it paled in comparison to stroopwafles of my past. (Chad and I were fortunate enough to try stroopwafles in Amsterdam a couple years ago, and since then the best brand I’ve tried is Daelmans. I’ve decided to make amends for the serious sadness of this tasting by getting proper stroopwafles and trying them with another press of the Guatamala!)

Despite the heart-breaking taste of the stroopwafles, the Guatamala Antigua paired so well with caramel that it actually improved the flavor of the stroopwafle. Good coffee and food pairings are supposed to compliment each other that way: the food should bring out the best of the coffee, and the coffee should bring out the best of the food, so that you’re sitting there wanting to take bite after sip after bite after sip.

20140428-190116.jpgI didn’t finish my stroopwafle, but I finished the delicious Guatamala. I’ll keep you posted on how the next tasting goes, and I’ll share some of my favorite facts from Uncommon Grounds, too! What’s your favorite coffee pairing?


5 thoughts on “Bookspiration: Uncommon Grounds

  1. coffee and coffee is my favorite coffee pairing. πŸ™‚ i’ve never had a stroopwafle but i’m sad for you that yours was stale. they sound good though. when i read the book “golden girls of mgm” i was telling everyone around me all the facts i’d learned about these actresses. i didn’t care if they were interested or not. so i think you telling everyone about coffee is totally acceptable and i am willing to listen to anything you want to tell me about coffee. can’t wait for that post!

    1. Haha, there are so many reasons I love you contained just in that response πŸ˜‰ We should remedy the lack of stroopwafles in your life, though I know you’re choosy when it comes to sweet indulgences! And I’m glad you’re willing to listen, because I CAN’T STOP MYSELF! I love talking about coffee πŸ™‚

  2. and I love drinking coffee! did you know the travel channel has a show called “dangerous grounds” where a guy goes into different countries (some of which are dangerous) to get coffee? and I would definitely try stroopwafles; they sound really good. right now, while I’m at work, there’s marshmallow swirl brownies and red velvet cake. this on a day I wasn’t going to eat added sugar. bitches…

  3. There is nothing worse than an stale stroopwafel! And I just realized that the only time I’ve gotten them was when I bought the same brand that you bought! I actually got mine at a Gelsons in CA, an expensive gourmet store where I would have least expected that to happen. The package was so cute, what a disappointment! World market has good ones, never stale.

    At least your coffee was good. I think coffee and a plain glazed doughnut really can’t be beat! =)

    1. What an unfortunate experience for the both of us! My general belief is that coffee + sweets always = some kind of wonderful, and now you’ve got me thinking I ought to do a pairing with a glazed donut!

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