The Perfect Cup of Coffee

What is your perfect cup of coffee?  Mine has journeyed far from what my Grandmother told me was the only way to drink a cup of coffee.

The Perfect Cup of Coffee - Do More of What Makes you Happy cup -

This post is shared as part of Boulder Locavore’s ongoing partnership with Silk, exploring healthy lifestyles choices and exciting plant-based dietary options.  All opinions are my own.

I remember exactly when I had my first cup of coffee.  I was in my sophomore year of college, studying a ton and thanks to a worldly roommate, I had my first cup of joe; and there was no turning back for me.

My Grandmother gave me an old percolator with clear instruction that I had to learn to drink my coffee black.  She sort of intimated that I was not a REAL coffee drinker unless I embraced the java for what it was au natural. She added that once I had committed and mastered drinking it in its serious natural state only then could I add things like cream or sugar.

The Perfect Cup of Coffee - Count Your Blessings cup -

I took her directive in earnest, which was not too hard as the percolator made the weakest coffee ever.  I soon graduated to a French Press which left me in a state of self-admiration about my sophistication.  I timed the steeping phase to the second and loved watching the grounds separate from the murky, brown velvety liquid.  I always felt like I should be pondering existentialism or some other deep thoughts when drinking the coffee for which I’d waited so patiently.

Being a Californian at the time I flowed from college student to working in high tech in hopping Silicon Valley.  We’d pop into Peet’s Coffee (this when it was still a local shop in Northern California not yet a chain) for a piping hot cup of Major Dickanson’s Blend which really tested Nana’s edict about black coffee.  Hoo-ee that stuff was strong!  It was serious coffee drinker’s coffee.

The Perfect Cup of Coffee -

Fast forward a decade or two.  Enter a husband (also a coffee lover), two kids, a dog, an official coffee maker and a single cup coffee machine.  And a white flag waving in surrender as I no longer drink my coffee black.  I do feel I conquered the beast.  If set adrift on a deserted island with only black coffee, I’d make it work.  But why should I have to?

Something Nana failed to teach me is though coffee is a tool to give the day a start or a pick me up in the afternoon, it’s a ritual too.  The punctuation mark at the end of a great meal.  The watering hole for girlfriends to get together and catch up.  The smell that signifies morning anew.  It’s what makes curling up in an arm chair with an afghan and a great book the perfect moment in a snow storm.  Or for me right now, I’m sitting on the shady side of our house on the front porch in the cool of a summer’s morning, smelling the blooming flowers in the air, gazing at the green foothills of North Boulder with the dulcet tones of chirping birds and lawn mowers buzzing; with a great cup of coffee.  For me coffee makes anything seem like time off for good behavior or a vacation however small.

The Perfect Cup of Coffee - Silk Original Creamer, French Press and newspaper -

A more tender stomach and dislike of feeling as though I may have ingested illegal substances making my insides vibrate have given way to happily adding something to tone down the caffeine in my coffee. Silk has a line of plant-based creamers that I’ve been playing with recently that transform a simple cup of coffee into a new drink with each flavor (I have friends that bake with them too).  With three almond and three soy flavors, in vanilla, caramel, and hazelnut, each day offers something new and exciting.  My favorite is Original Soy Creamer; it’s lightly flavored, and creamy in texture adding the right touch to the coffee. For those who prefer plant-based products, you are no longer left out of the creamer game!

The Perfect Cup of Coffee with Silk Almond Creamers -

Every morning as I decide which coffee drink I want to make with one of Silk’s delicious plant-based creamers and then curl up on the couch in the quiet only a household of sleeping people brings, I think of Nana.  Wishing she was with me to share a cup but also imagining her surprise at the luscious Silk Creamer flavors and how they transform coffee into an experience more than a way to start the day.  I think she’d retract her ‘only black coffee’ mandate in about one sip.


  1. says

    I’ve been told the same things about not being a real coffee drinker unless I drink it black. I can do that, but I much prefer creamer with a little sweet!

    • says

      I think it’s like only eating cauliflower in cheese sauce; something that seems like you really aren’t eating the cauliflower for what it is! I now say people should drink their coffee however they enjoy it. Certainly I did my time as a black coffee drinker with no regrets but am more happy where I am now!

  2. says

    My dad doesn’t being without coffee. My stomach is getting more and more sensitive as I age, so this sounds like a great option for me.

  3. says

    I consider myself a coffee connoisseur. Typically I take it black, but I indulge with a bit of creamer when I have an after dinner cup. I love that Silk allows me to do that without any repercussions.

  4. Rufus says

    That bad feeling in your gut is from the dairy crap you are putting into good coffee. If you need to add something, add stevia, brandy, or a shot of good whiskey.

    • says

      Ha, ha! Love the whisky idea Rufus. In my case I just can’t drink strong black coffee straight anymore; that is the feeling in my gut causing me to need to cut it with something. Since Silk creamers are actually dairy-free, they may be a great solution.

  5. says

    My husband is the only one who drinks coffee in our house. There is no way he’d take it black. He loads his cup with all kinds of sugars and creamers. I am going to have to suggest trying Silk. I am sure he’d love it!

  6. Nicole Escat says

    Coffee is my thing so I like a perfect cup of coffee. Almost everyday I sip my coffee in our garden and it is really relaxing.

    • says

      Oh my gosh Joyce, Kindergarten?! I saw that but remember a mom in a playgroup I was in when my eldest was between 10 month and 2 years; the mom was from Atlanta and would give the toddler just a touch of coffee in a glass of milk. I guess everyone has their own sense of how and when coffee should be consumed.

  7. Rosey says

    I like it black first and foremost. I do like a little cream or sweetener every now and again though too. 🙂

  8. says

    I have a long, diverse coffee history as well. My first cup of coffee was from an old cowboy drip coffee pot that my grandpa used. I drank it with milk back then because my mom did. I eventually graduated to just black because that’s the way my grandpa drank it and after all, who doesn’t want to be like their grandpa. Thanks for bringing back great memories!

  9. Robin Rue says

    I think I have also perfected my own cup of coffee, but now you have me wanting to try this different version. It looks simply amazing.

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