There have been various rumors circulating in news currents around the world that “Brazil produces the world’s best coffee”. And at first, I wondered what the hell this meant. After all, who’s to decide that a coffee is best or second best? Don’t opinions vary? And isn’t one man’s meat another man’s poison…as the old proverb goes? But hold on just yet…there just might be a little bit of truth...if not a whole lot of it...to every rumor…and especially this one about the Brazilian coffee.
All day…all night…
What the F**K?
When I came to Brazil, and I saw how people drank coffee, I couldn’t believe what I was seeing, so I called my friend Johnny and said “A Gente Esta Muy Loca,” which, translated, means “The people are very crazy.”
In fact, everywhere you turn, there is a coffee flask complimented with these handy coffee cups nearby for every passerby, local or stranger, to take a sip of the world’s best coffee. One of the most common expressions you’ll hear in Brazil may very well be “quer cafe?”, which means “do you want coffee?”
So why do Brazilians drink coffee so much, and what makes their coffee special? The Brazilians don’t use “instant” coffee at all. They “painstakingly” brew and strain the coffee out and put it into a flask. I use the word “painstakingly” from a foreigner’s perspective, but the smile on the face of the Brazilian while he or she is making coffee will quickly convince you that for Brazlians, making coffee is a “labor of love.”
Related: A mother’s unfathomable love for her child.
The coffee I’ve drunk in Guyana is satisfying, I wouldn’t doubt, and it does give a slight feeling of elation like coffee was supposed to do. But the Brazilian coffee is good enough to heal the broken heart. When I drink Brazilian coffee, it fires up my imagination and drive and makes me forget 99% of depressing thoughts if I happened to be harboring any at that time. Now isn’t that something to drink to?
In Brazil, the coffee is free.
During a trip to the center of Bom Fim this morning, I stopped to rest and watch TV at the lounge of the Takutu Hotel in Bom Fim. The coffee flask and the water cooler were stationed side by side. I was a little cautious in asking the receptionist “can I drink a little bit of your coffee?” She responded with a smile “well the flask is there for you.”
Doubtless, there are many places where you can purchase coffee in Brazil, but most of the time, there’s a very hospitable flask of coffee at your disposal for you to freely enjoy almost everywhere. In almost every school, every dentist’s office, every Honda outlet, every lawyer’s office…I’ve visited, there was the coffee flask waiting with the world’s best coffee for me to enjoy. And if I hesitated too long, a very warm and friendly voice, accompanied by a friendly smile, would gesture “quer cafe?”…which means, once again, “do you want coffee?” And more often than not, there is a container full of salted biscuits to go with it.
Related: How coffee put Brazil on the world’s financial map.