Test Your Coffee I.Q.

The story behind your morning cup of coffee might really surprise you. Here’s what goes into each brewed cup. Test your knowledge to see what you know!

1. Coffee beans are technically seeds.
They’re the pits of the cherry-like berries found on the flowering shrubs, but we call them “beans” because of the resemblance to legumes.

2. The coffee drink dates back to 800 A.D.
Legend has it that 9th-century goat herders noticed the effect caffeine had on their goats, who appeared to “dance” after eating the fruit of the Coffea plant. A local monk then made a drink with the produce and found that it kept him awake at night, thus the original cup of coffee was born.

3. You can actually eat coffee cherries as a food.
Many years ago, people mixed coffee berries with fat to create a type of energy-rich snack ball. They would also ferment the pulp to make a “wine-like drink.” Yum?? Most likely an acquired taste.

4. Second largest commodity in the world.
Coffee is the world’s 2nd largest traded commodity, with crude oil being first. Coffee is consumed in massive quantities, making it the most beloved beverage (next to water). It’s worth is over $100 billion worldwide.

5. There are two main types coffee beans, Arabica and Robusta.
Growers predominantly plant the Arabica species, although less popular, Robusta tastes slightly more bitter and contains more caffeine.

6. Who is the Biggest Coffee Grower Worldwide? Brazil
Today, Brazil produces about one-third of the world’s supply, according to the International Coffee Organization, about twice as much as the second place holder, Vietnam.

7. Only two U.S. states produce coffee.
Kona coffee is widely popular. Because coffee traditionally grows best in climates along the equator, Hawaii’s weather is optimal for harvesting beans. California has also jumped into the coffee game, with dozens of farms now churning out some pretty premium bags.

8. The term “espresso” means “pressed or forced out” in Italian.
This refers to the way espresso is made — forcing boiling water through pressed coffee grounds. And although espresso has more caffeine per volume than coffee, it would take three shots to equal the amount in a regular cup of joe.

9. The world’s most expensive coffee can cost more than $600 a pound.
One of the most coveted varieties comes from the… (yikes)… feces of an Asian palm civet. The cat-like creature eats fruit including coffee cherries, but is unable to digest the beans. The excreted seeds produce a smooth, less acidic brew called “kopi luwak,” but the means of production has drawn criticism from animal welfare activists, plus drinking cat poop really isn’t popular in most circles!

10. Multiple people have tried to ban coffee.
Back in 1511, leaders in Mecca believed it stimulated radical thinking and outlawed the drink. Some 16th-century Italian clergymen also tried to ban coffee because they believed it to be “satanic.” However, Pope Clement VII loved coffee so much that he lifted the ban and had coffee baptized in 1600. And as the 18th century, the Swedish government made both coffee and coffee paraphernalia (including cups and dishes) illegal for its supposed ties to “rebellious sentiment.” Can you imagine trying to ban coffee today? That would create a full-scale war, we’re certain of it!

11. Yes, you can overdose on coffee.
But, don’t worry, you would need to drink about 30 cups in a very short period time to get close to a lethal dose of caffeine. Definitely not recommended.

12. Finland is home to the biggest coffee lovers.
The average adult Finn goes through 27.5 pounds of coffee each year, according to the International Coffee Organization. Compare that to a measly 11 pounds per American.

13. Coffee drinkers tend to live longer.
Research has linking moderate consumption (about three to four cups per day) with a longer life span, plus a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes and Parkinson’s, according to Harvard Health Publishing.

14. The largest cup of coffee ever filled a 9-foot tall cup.
The 3,487-gallon serving earned a Guiness World Record in 2012. That’s a lot of brew.

15. The Boston Tea Party helped popularize coffee in America.
In the lead up to the Revolutionary War, it became patriotic to sip java in lieu of tea. The Civil War also made the drink more pervasive because it helped energize tired troops.

16. Decaf does not mean caffeine-free.
An eight-ounce brewed cup of decaf coffee actually contains two to 12 milligrams of caffeine, the Mayo Clinic states. In comparison, a regular cup of coffee supplies between 95 to 200 milligrams, while one can of cola has aout 23 to 35 milligrams of caffeine.

17. The word “coffee” comes from the Arabic word for “wine.”
The word “Qahwah” later became “kahveh” in Turkish, and then “koffie” in Dutch, which is where we get the English word “coffee.”

18. One cup of black coffee only has one calorie.
Adding sweeteners, cream, and other mix-ins can quickly jack up the total calorie count. A venti Java Chip Frappuccino from Starbucks contains 88 grams of sugar and 600 calories, which is MORE than a McDonald’s Big Mac. Geez!

19. Teddy Roosevelt reportedly coined Maxwell House’s slogan.
Our nation’s 26th president loved coffee so much that one of his son’s described his custom cup as “more in the nature of a bathtub,” according to Smithsonian.com. On a 1907 visit to Andrew Jackson’s former estate, the commander in chief supposedly dubbed a cup of Maxwell House, “joe… good to the last drop,” a catchphrase still used today.

20. The grounds can beautify your skin.
Yes, you heard that correctly. Coffee grounds can be used as an exfoliator that can lift off dead skin cells, making skin feel smooth and look brighter, and caffeine is said to improve blood circulation in skin. Not sure that we would recommend a coffee ground skin care regime, but hey, the sky’s the limit.

The best fact is if you drink three cups a day and you could live longer! So be sure to order your bag of Mt. Si Coffee today.

Enjoy!

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