Stubble: Tell me about your coffee setup.
Scott: My coffee setup is highly scientific. I get two five pound bags of house blend Costco Coffee at a time, whole beans, and then I grind the beans in the morning. I have a little Black and Decker Brew N’ Go coffee maker and a little bean grinder, but I don’t know what kind it is. I need a new one every two years. An when you’re done you have to remember to unplug it to so the house doesn’t blow up, as is the rule with small, crummy electronics.
Stubble: Maybe we can look up the grinder brand if someone wants to perfectly recreate your coffee setup at home.
Scott: Yeah! That’s right. I also have travel coffee options, paper cups, if I want to take it with me on the way to work – you know you can get like 30 packs of these things – or I just use a regular cup if I’m drinking it at home. It’s a little complex, but once you do it three times you’re an expert. It becomes pretty routine.
Stubble: What I like about your coffee setup is you have a little personal coffee maker. One cup at a time.
Scott: One cup at a time, I think, is the way to go because coffee doesn’t keep well. It gets bitter if it stays on the heat too long. Some of the airpots are good, they keep it fine for two or three hours.
Stubble: And you are the only coffee drinker in the house these days?
Scott: I am the only coffee drinker in the house, except when we have guests.
Stubble: How did this setup evolve over time?
Scott: That’s a good question, I’m not sure. I think when I discovered there was such a thing as a coffee bean grinder so you can grind your own beans. And then the single cup maker made perfect sense for me. You don’t need to make 10 cups every time you make coffee.
Stubble: Are we talking 90’s, or 2000’s?
Scott: Sometime in the modern era of coffee in America. I’m not sure how long Starbucks has been around, but coffee in this country used to be real weak and people would make these big percolator pots and after a few hours it would be horrible. Maybe some people still use that, but it’s old technology.
Stubble: So your coffee setup is a model of third wave coffee?
Scott: Hah, well, those Kirkland beans I think are good! They do sell Starbuck beans and some other brands. But I tried them once and I liked it and after a while you get used to it. If I buy 10 pounds at a time that will last me a long time.
Stubble: Have you ever tried any other ways of making coffee?
Scott: Ah, I did try a press once I got as a gift from my son. And, you know, it was fine. I could have done it that way. But this seemed a little easier, it fit better into my routine.
Stubble: Coffee is a lot about routine, isn’t it?
Scott: Sure, that’s true of every routine. The simple routines in life are fun.
Scott D. Johnson is a coffee drinkin’ man in Fenton, Michigan. This is the first segment in a coffee table book about how dads make coffee.