Coffee as Ritual

Coffee as Ritual

By Allision Keith Texeira / Verve Cafe Manager

With 2019 well underway and the buzz of the new year waning, the monotony sets in and the exciting trails we set out to blaze start feeling more like well-worn paths. If those feelings resonate with you, it might be time to consider swapping routine for ritual and infusing your day with intention. Your morning cup of coffee is the perfect testing ground.

Coffee is a constant in my life. It’s the smell of my childhood and now it is the staple fragrance of the home I’ve created with my little family by the sea. As a mother, wife, creative, and the Manager of Verve Coffee on Fair Avenue, in Santa Cruz, California, my coffee ritual comes into full effect when I have a day off at home with my family. I find myself going to bed eager to wake up and indulge in my cup of happy as if it’s my very first cup. I wake when my daughter rises and we stumble into our living room together.

I’m a firm believer that brew time can be you time. After getting my daughter cozy on the couch, I move mindfully into the kitchen - a practice I adopted many years ago during my training as a yoga instructor. With the right mindset, a morning coffee ritual can be so intimate. After all, you are creating something that will nourish your body. Through each step in my brewing process, I check in with myself and take a tiny peek at Willie, my daughter.

I grab my Fellow kettle, fill it with water, light the burner and let it do its thing! While the water works its way towards the perfect temperature, I dose my grounds into a small spice dish. The smell is euphoric. I have my coffee pre-ground usually a day or two prior at the cafe. Although this is not recommended for the most precise coffee brewing, I have found it to be best suited for my lifestyle and this season of motherhood. Trust me, you’re not alone nor are you wrong if you don’t follow the rules perfectly. We’re human. And remember, brewtime is you time.

I’ve always loved African coffees for the vibrancy. It could be all in my mind, but I believe it’s general flavor profile works well with the caffeine content and just blasts me awake in the most enjoyable way, starting right at my taste buds.

My home is a very intentional place, we own our feelings and actions and strive to cultivate a sense of warmth and thoughtfulness with every move we make. My coffee process is a reflection of this greater intention. The time and energy it takes to do a pourover by hand, or any other manual method of brewing coffee, may seem minuscule, but it’s a fully invested process that requires being present. I like it, I like it a whole lot.

My brewing method of choice is the 6-cup Chemex and I rotate between a stainless steel reusable filter, and a linen reusable filter. We do our best to be eco-friendly, so I was keen on the idea of investing just a bit more on earth-loving filters. They allow us to eliminate waste without compromising the taste!

Typically half-way through making my pour over, my tiny girl, Willow, will bring her stool over and watch me pour in awe. She’s only had two full trips around the sun but she is wise beyond her years. She is one of the most influential teachers I’ve ever had, so watching her building her own relationship with coffee is an honor and joy. She has her own wooden coffee brewer. She will grab hers, bring it into the kitchen and pretend to brew beside me. Once the brew is complete, I grab a mug, add a bit of eucalyptus honey to the bottom of the mug, and allow it to naturally blend throughout my coffee as I pour it in.

When I finally take that first sip, it’s a ’ YES, I’m ready, I can do all things’ type of feeling. Willow will be ready to move her tiny body a bit at this point in our morning so we will generally dance or I’ll move through a small yin-like yoga flow while she mimics me on her own mat. I take big gulps of my brew in between poses. Willow and I discuss our intentions for the day, areas we want to tackle, spaces we want to leave open for whimsy and we go go go!

The details of my morning coffee ritual may vary as time moves on, but I am certain the ritual itself will remain present. No matter the chaos that may lie ahead, I aim to find that sense of grounding in the early hours of each day. As life proceeds to ebb and flow, as our family grows, as we become older and wiser, I’ll still create that time and space to brew.

Here’s to comfort + coffee.