A Turk's Coffee in Bohemia
An American abroad discovers the strange art of Turkish coffee.
Photo by Stephen Palahach
There's a series of mystical happenstance that occurs when we go about finding what makes up our perfect cup of coffee. Whatever drove early adopters of the bean to toss it into flames and drink it tea-steep style must have involved, or indeed heralded, some intersection of personal and cultural introspection. One such coincidence occurred while visiting the Czech Republic during a bout of couch surfing. I was anticipating some kind of deep immersion into the less storied half of my heritage. This was understood by my father to be the result of some confusing migration throughout Bohemia, the haphazard accuracy of Ellis Island transcription and many tight lips in between.
On a lazy morning in the city of Brno, what sat before me wasn't an oversized Pilsner but a small cup of Turkish coffee. A total novice to coffee drinking, I picked up the habit while traveling because it was often cheaper than ordering tea. I ordered it on a whim, assuming it was a novelty or…