Baxter Black: Cowboy coffee
September 17, 2013
I am married to a Starbucks fiend (sounds better than user or addict). Any trip to town includes a quad vente latte four shots no foam. It is more important than the mail, the heart medicine, the bank deposit or pickin' up the kids at day care! On extended trips we drive for miles at all hours of the day or night following her GPS in search of that green symbol, the one that looks like Medusa with radioactive tendrils flaming from her head.
To be kind, it has a flavor of its own. It's not for everybody but I do think it has driven fanatic users to more serious addictions like five-hour energy drinks, Tabasco popsicles and cigars made of burning rubber!
I was in a strange town on a Starbucks mission last week trying to remember if it were a Grande Uno Caffe Misto Leonardo or a dolce capasso nu latto Divinchi? The barista (the special name for Starbucks waiters that was derived from the character playing the one-eyed mushroom wearing scuba gear in the bar scene from Star Wars IV) took my order.
He said he didn't know cowboys drank Starbucks.
I said, "We invented it!"
As I explained it to him, it became clear to me! I ask you all, you cowboys, hunters, soldiers, Indians, fishermen, prospectors, explorers…all of you who have roasted squirrel, carp, possum, haunch of wild burro, buzzard drum sticks or spotted owl over a campfire in the wilderness…what did you wash it down with? That's right, cowboy coffee!
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A handful of coffee grounds (any brand) in an old pot, put on the open fire and set on boil is the recipe supreme! The pot itself is sacred and never washed. It is this accumulation of ingredients that gives cowboy coffee it's unique flavor.
It is seasoned by the remnants of whatever falls into the pot and becomes part of the geological strata that comprise its lining. It is not unlike a good pipe whose bowl gets layered with carcinogenic ash, or the wax that builds in your ears, or the plaque that barnacles an ol' dog's teeth.
Starbucks proudly touts its flavor, but if you really crave a strong, rank, acidic, caffeine stimulant, one that can also peel the paint off a backhoe bucket, penetrate zirconium nuclear fuel rods, and destroy the odor in your son's tennis shoes, have an old cowboy make you a cuppa in his blackened pot. You will discover Starbuck's secret.
A WORD OF CAUTION: If you can't strain your cowboy coffee through two-inch ten-gauge expanded metal, at least drop a magnet into the cup before you sip.