June 25, 2017
One of my favorite recurring moments tend to happen during weekends. These moments usually happen during Sundays or Saturdays when I'm at home, taking it easy, having a very relaxed time. At around 3-5 o'clock in the afternoon I might make myself a cup of coffee. In a subset of those days, if I'm lucky, the coffee turns out usually good. I go all OHMYGOD-THIS-COFFEE-IS-SO-GOOD. This usually takes me quite by surprise. When this happens, I often try to figure out what made the coffee so good. A lot of it is probably situational, it's a nice and calm day, I haven't eaten anything that leaves a weird taste and such. I'm a blank slate ready for coffee goodness.
Now, for some reason, people tend to think that chocolate goes along with coffee. I don't get this. When you add a piece of chocolate into the mix – I mean eating it, not putting into the coffee, you monster – most of the that really smooth coffee taste just vanishes and you're left with a quite disappointing beverage. Don't get me wrong, chocolate is by far my favorite kind of sweet-stuff, but I would never have had those WHAT-HOW-CAN-IT-BE-SO-GOOD-moments if I had a piece of chocolate to go along with it.
I'd take it a step farther and say that coffee is usually best without anything at all. I'm hunting simple and distilled experiences. Really good coffee is best on it's own. A piece of really good chocolate is best on its own, otherwise it probably wasn't that good to start with. I'd go even farther and say that this applies to tea and pastries or whatever as well. Actually, this kind of applies to everything. Beer and food is overrated, beer always tastes better without food. The only corner-case I find in this reasoning is red wine and food. I've had some quite pleasant experiences there, but usually I even prefer my red wine on its own.
Update: I think I have come the conclusion that there are lots of food that is enhanced by having a particular drink to go with it. Filled pasta might be better with some red wine. Burgers might be better with a beer. But I almost never think that the reverse is true. Red wine does not become tastier by having it with pasta. Good red wine is best on its own. Beer does not become tastier with a burger. Now, one has to eat in order to survive. So if I'm at a pub, I get the best of both worlds – surviving and enjoying my beverages to the fullest – by postponing ordering food until I've had a beer or two. The food just ruins the distilled pleasure.