Coffee has a long and rich history, beginning with a legend of an Ethiopian goat herder. If we are to believe the story handed down through the centuries, his goats were particularly energetic after eating a certain plant, and coffee was born.
There are few areas of the world where coffee is not enjoyed in some format. Many cultures enjoy eating the beans as well, either soaked in water and chewy or hard and crunchy. The idea of a coffee shop is not as modern as we think, with records of public coffee houses being traced back as far as the 15th century in the Arab peninsula.
From there, coffee quickly spread throughout the world. It first came to Europe as a medicinal that was condemned by the medieval church. Eventually, the controversy became serious enough to be placed before the Pope. Clement VIII was, fortunately, a fan of the dark, bitter liquid and gave coffee official church approval. Public approval soon followed with over 300 coffee houses springing up in London by the middle of the 1600s.
Coffee was served in the Americas from the time of European settlements, though tea was more popular until the 1773 Boston Tea Party. Americans began replacing their British tea with bitter coffee and have never looked back. Coffee continues to be the more popular beverage in the US to this day.
Modern times see coffee as the second most common export in the world after oil. Americans alone drink approximately 350 million cups each day. The future of coffee looks no less bright. With new trends and twists upon this traditional beverage, people are finding exciting ways to enjoy coffee every day.