I walk into the coffee shop and breathe in deep, savoring that familiar aroma. The smell of coffee, with a hint of hazelnut, vanilla, mocha, and just a touch of cinnamon. There’s only one place in the world other than a coffee shop that smells like that—Grandmother’s house. Grandmother didn’t just like her coffee, and it wouldn’t really do her justice to say she loved her coffee. Grandmother was to coffee what a sommelier is to wine. She knew the intricacies of coffee, the different tastes and even the textures. And only the best would do for her. No instant coffee, or coffee bought at the grocery store. She had to have fresh coffee, from a respectable coffee shop. “The morning cup of coffee sets the tone for the whole day,” she used to say. I used to go to Grandmother’s every Sunday morning. Her routine was always the same. She would kiss me once on each cheek, hang up my coat and lead me into the kitchen, slice a piece of banana bread right out of the oven (sometimes cranberry), and pour a cup of freshly brewed coffee. “Alexa,” she said to me one day. “Did you know that every person’s personality is like a flavor of coffee?” “Really?” I said, amused at how Grandmother relished her coffee so much that she related everything to it. “Yes” she said. “You, my dear, are French vanilla. You are sweet, almost sickeningly so at times to the discerning coffee drinker.” I slightly recoiled at Grandmother’s assessment of me. You expect your grandmother to call you sweet, but never sickeningly sweet. “Your father is espresso,” she continued. “He comes on strong. There are many people who don’t like him, but others can’t live without that high feeling that he gives them. He has an addictive personality that many people can’t let go of.” “Let me guess, Grandmother. You’re hazelnut.”
“Hazelnut? Why on earth would you say that?”
“Because I find your coffee talk a bit...