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Your first cup of coffee

I would say I was around thirteen years old. I would stay overnight at my freinds house. In the morning a breakfast of eggs and toast with that instant cup of Tasters Choice..... The memories. Still love my coffee.

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  1. I got my first "cup" probably at that same age...

    drip coffee with lots of milk and sugar in a bowl (french style)

    I still drink coffee the same way most of the time

    1. Probably 8-9 if not younger. It was mostly milk and probably very little instant coffee. My grandmother would make it for us for our breakfast when I spent the night at her house.

      We would have toast and coffee in the kitchen, sit on low chairs and use the open oven door for a table.

      1. I don't remember how old I would have been, but i distinctly remember it was grade 6, on an overnight field trip with school, one of my friends lived in a very liberal house and he was already drinking coffee at that time. I lied and said I did too, so one night we went down to the vending machine and each got a coffee. Clearly not the best quality coffee I could have had, but still a vivid experience and it instantly got me hooked.

        1 Reply
        1. re: TeRReT

          I don't have a clear memory of the first time I had a cup, although I remember being a kid, liking the smell of hot coffee that the adults would be drinking, and being told that I wouldn't be able to consume it until I was "older." I imagine I was 13 or 14 the first time I had it (I think I was 16 the first time my father let me have a cold beer after I mowed the grass one hot summer morning; I think it was his idea of a "rite of passage" into adulthood; I did too). Wasn't necessarily crazy about the taste of the coffee, but I loved the physical effect of the caffeine (I always drank it black--- still do). For awhile...especially during college days...I drank way too much coffee, but have lessened my consumption of it to a considerable extent. I still find 2 or 3 cups in the morning necessary to get my "engine" started, but try to consume nothing else with caffeine in it for the rest of what remains in the day. One cup more than I'm used to now can change my mood from upbeat and energetic to shaky and jittery.

        2. Growing up, I loved stealing sips and smells of my mom's coffee with vanilla creamer on the way to school in the morning. I was 18 when I had my first cup of black, watery coffee out of a styrofoam cup that I convinced myself tasted good. In college, i bought my first mini coffee machine and started experimenting with all sorts of different types and flavors. And now I am nothing less than a coffee addict. I love it with cream in the morning and black throughout the rest of the day. If i wasn't so impatient in the morning, I would use my french press every day!

          1. We kids got a spoon of coffee in our milk sometimes as a treat, but my first full cup was at our very good local café. I was maybe 14, and when I learned that I could sit there and read all evening for a nickel I was hooked. Of course it did not help much in the sleep department. It was good coffee, too. After that I'd sometimes ask for coffee at weekend breakfast, and it was given to me without much comment.

            1. I was probably around 5 or 6. Now, to understand this story, you'll need to know that when I was that age I loved everything cowboy (not the Dallas Cowboys, just cowboys). I had a little cowgirl outfit, holster, toy guns, boots, hat....yeah, I was cute. So one morning at the breakfast table, I said to my parents that I wanted a cup of coffee like theirs. They drank their coffee black. My Dad said, OK and went to the kitchen. A few minutes later he came back with a cup of coffee for me. It was beige, not black in color like theirs. I said, "How come my coffee doesn't look like yours"? My quick-thinking Dad said, "Oh, well, that's how the cowboys drink their coffee and I figured that's how you would want yours." I said, "Of course"! It was probably more milk than coffee with a little sugar. From then on in our family, milky coffee was always called Cowboy Coffee. I started drinking coffee regularly as a senior in high school and started drinking it black my freshman year in college.

              1 Reply
              1. First one I enjoyed - I was about 14, working on a ranch-camp in the sierra nevada. We were in the back country and an August snow storm hit. Woke up to help with breakfast and was handed a cup of steaming coffee. Hit the spot.

                1. Well my first real cup did not come until I was in college. I drank it to wake up before a big test.

                  Later I drank it in the morning before going to my first job.

                  My kids, on the other hand, began drinking coffee much earlier--H.S. or maybe earlier. I just laughed at Mr. Sueatmo when he opined that coffee would stunt their growth. Where does that sort of nonsense come from anyway? I mean they were getting caffeine from their soft drinks already.

                  1. Like a few others on the thread, this is not so much a "first cup of coffee" memory, but "early memories of coffee" kind of reply. Apparently, coffee is a staple part of the blood chemistry of Norwegian-Americans, and at any gathering of our Norski clan, the coffee flowed freely among the adults and the coffee smells filled Grandma's dining room, or Aunt So-&-so's etc. Back in those mid 1950s, before artificial sweetener packets, lump sugar was very very popular. Little squeezie sugar tongs were an essential table tool, which doubled as one of my toys- a claw to taunt a sibling or cousin when the occasion was right. The early initiation into the family coffee habit was in the form of those square or rectangular lumps of sugar being dumped into one of the grown-up's coffee and then passed along to the children, like delicious candy. Early coffee memories include Mom's old, kind of beat up metal percolator coffee pot, before the Mr. Coffee kind of drippers. The pulse of coffee into the little glass bulb on the lid was mild entertainment during breakfast. And when Maxwell House put it to music in their early commercials, I howled with delight- for some reason, the first time around, it just hit me as hilarious. As emglow 101 said at the top: "...The memories. Still love my coffee." Florida Hound

                    1. My mother the caffeine junkie got her 5 kids started on the gateway drug cafe au lait when we reached about 10 years.
                      50 years later, I drink 2 morning cups at home each day, I very rarely drink it away from home except when I travel, and NEVER at a Starbucks.

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: Veggo

                        I'm the opposite, I rarely drink coffee at home these days.

                        I can't recall either when I started drinking coffee. I was likely not that old, around 9 or 10 at a guess. My parents always had instant coffee in the house. I didn't really start to enjoy coffee until I was 18 when I trained as a barista.

                        1. re: Veggo

                          I'm trying to do the same thing to my kids. I think caffeine is the natural wonder drug, but so far, they're not into it. DS 15 will sometimes have a latte, but DD 17 prefers wimpy herbal tea. I don't despair, though, I didn't love coffee until I was in my 20s, even though I'd been a steady "user" since junior high.

                        2. 16 or 17. My boyfriend enjoyed coffee, and it rubbed off on me.

                          1. I always thought I hated coffee. My mother drank it black, and I didn't like her breath afterwards, or the acrid smell. All through high school and much of college, I drank tea. Then, I developed a huge crush on a guy who worked in a coffee shop. The year was ending, and I was leaving to visit my cousin in Paris the day after finals, so I went to the coffee shop and got a coffee; probably doctored with much cream and sugar. That didn't hook me though. What hooked me was the week in Paris. I drank as much coffee as I could, no cream; Cafe Espress. I've been hooked ever since and I like my coffee strong. Though I never have developed a taste for it black, unless outside of the US.

                            1. I don't remember it ever being an issue - I know I hated tea from a very young age, so always had coffee instead.

                              1. About 4 or 5. My family would go to my great-aunt and great-uncle's house for kaffeeklatsch on the weekends (parents were immigrants and these were the only relatives in the US--they were really my surrogate grandparents). Anyway, she used to have a wonderful spread, with coffee (made in a glass percolator) and sweetened REAL whipped cream. So, I'd always get a cup of coffee with lots of whipped cream. Gosh, I'm just smiling at that memory now!

                                Probably started drinking it regularly as a teen. Still do, but these days it's decaffeinated (except for one day a week, when I allow myself caffeine).

                                1. Age 6. My parents went on vacation, and I was sent to stay with my maternal grandmother. My siblings went to my maternal aunt. Grandma was a coffeeholic. The first breakfast, she automatically served me a cup of black coffee with my eggs. No cream, no sugar. I was told you'll drink it and you'll like it. I did. To this day I drink my coffee black. Mt siblings are in their 60s and neither one has ever tasted coffee. My mother is 90 and when offered coffee by a waiter always says that she isn't old enough to drink coffee. She never served coffee in the house. My late father and I had to get it out.
                                  My daughter's started drinking coffee at home at about age 12. They had to catch a 6:15 am schoolbus and would take a travel cup with them, needed to caffeine to start their days. There High school sold coffee on arrival at 7am. Wish coffe was available in school in my day.

                                  1. 19 yo, black with a shot of Yukon Jack. I thought it was absolutely vile but was hanging with an older crowd and didn't want to appear too "young" so I choked it down.

                                    My parents weren't coffee drinkers and I don't remember any friends in high school drinking coffee. Even in college, I don't remember anyone drinking coffee on a regular basis.

                                    Now, it seems like every high schooler and college student can't walk up the street without a huge coffee in their hand. (I have a college on one side of my house and a high school down the block, I see lots of students every morning.)

                                    1. About 7. My grandfather, Pop, would take me crappie fishing at the Lake of the Ozarks back when, if waking up on a Saturday morning, there was maybe one little fishing boat with a 2 1/2 horse making it's way up the lake. I adored the man. He always had coffee and I wanted to be just like him. He would give me a cup (Willow Ware of course) with a spoonfull of cream. I thought I was pretty hot stuff. I've loved coffee ever since. Fresh and black. Sigh!

                                      1. I started at about 4 years old. My father made percolator coffee in the morning and the smell would lure me out of bed. The morning coffees with dad were precious moments, even if he was barely awake.

                                        1. Been drinking cafe con leche since I was three or so, first real cup was Dunkin' Donuts when I was 16, never looked back.

                                          1. haha, i have a good story for that. I was 10 or 11, and we had gone to vist my grandparents. My uncle gave my (younger!) cousins some of his wine after dinner. I was big on fairness at that point, so my dad had to come up with something even better to distract me. He told me that, yeah, wine was something grown ups drank, the even cooler grown ups drank coffee (to be fair, I think both he and my mom had glasses of wine AND coffee, my grandparents lived it up :). He made me a very weak cup of coffee with lots of milk and sugar and I felt very superior to the boys :) hehe, thanks for making me remember that, a very good memory.

                                            1. Well, I'm almost ready for Social Security. My first cup was.......... I'll let you know when it happens. I can't stand the fragrance, and I don't like the flavor as an ingredient. It's really hard when you're married to a coffeeholic.

                                              But I'm told I do make a great pot of it.

                                              But that's only fair. I drink lots of tea, and she won't go near it.

                                              1. Can't remember first cuppa. My Dad didn't drink coffee. My Grandmother only drank tea... and would use a tea bag to DEATH before tossing. My Grandfather drank coffee but was probably subjected to some god-awful stuff made by Nana until instant became the thing. Throughout college, it was either sludge in dining hall or instant with water heated with a stinger.

                                                Remember as a newly-wed making a total splurge on a Mr. Coffee... about the time they first came out. Not only was the machine a splurge, but buying cans of ground coffee was a big ticket item in grocery budget. NEVER ground own beans until after moving into house. Neighbors were GREAT and we often got together for dinner/drinks. She was a tad on the pretentious side but a really great friend.

                                                I'm NOT a coffee snob by any means, usually only buy whole bean, but do have a jar of instant in cabinet.

                                                4 Replies
                                                1. re: kseiverd

                                                  My Grandmother only drank tea... and would use a tea bag to DEATH before tossing.


                                                  I thought that only happened in my family!

                                                  During our first family vacation together, Mr. CB was highly annoyed that my family would, from his point of view, be too lazy to throw out the tea bags.

                                                  What they were doing was putting them on a plate by the sink for later use. Mr. CB would see them there and throw them in the trash. He couldn't wrap his head around reusing a tea bag.

                                                  Mom and Dad were annoyed that he was throwing out perfectly good 3rd or 4th use tea bags, lots more life left in those bags! My mom could also get multiple uses out of paper towels and learned quickly to hide her paper towels when we shared vacation houses.

                                                  1. re: cleobeach

                                                    Reusing the teabag, depression era mentality. I cured my great-uncle of this by showing him he could brew an entire pot of tea by putting the bag in a MR. Coffee Carafe and running it with water.
                                                    He thought it was great that he could make 12 cups from that one bag and drink it all day long.

                                                    1. re: bagelman01

                                                      One of the guys in my office said his aunt is doing a slightly different version of the tea bag recycling but with those little Kuerig coffee cups, using the same one over and over all day long.

                                                      1. re: cleobeach

                                                        I don't know about usig a K cup all day long, but my MIL buys the Emeril's extra bold and gets 2 regular cups of medium strength coffee from one K cup

                                                2. Probably around 10 (maybe younger, can't be sure) at 7-Eleven.

                                                  Yeah, I got my coffee cherry popped at a convenience store playing Millipede.

                                                  1. As a really young child, I'd have "coffee milk" -- a couple of spoonfuls of coffee mixed into my regular glass of milk. But I didn't start drinking coffee regularly until I was well into adulthood -- maybe in my mid-20's -- because it was increasingly difficult to get a decent cup of tea in the workplace, but coffee was ubiquitous.

                                                    1. Probably while in university. Have only had it a few times and despise it. Still do not drink it to this day, though I do love the aroma.

                                                      1. 7th grade, on a dependents' cruise on the Canberra, off the coast of Norfolk. It was cold, must have been in the 40s. I got a cup of black sludge on the signal bridge. I was hooked.

                                                        1. My mom had a classic Faberware electric percolator pot, and the merry gurgling and delicious aroma were the alarm clocks of my childhood. I can't remember a time when the smell of coffee wasn't in the house...my dad worked rotating shifts as an aircraft mechanic and he and my mom were caffeine-proof. When he got home at midnight, she'd have a small snack and a fresh pot of coffee ready to go.

                                                          I was offered milky tea before coffee; I reckon I had my first cup of coffee with whole milk and a couple of sugars around age 9.

                                                          1. We were camping in the Blue Ridge Mountains and had gone thru part of a hurricane all night in a tent. If the wind didn't keep us awake, Dad did going out to check the ropes for shrinkage so they didn't tear the tent. Quite a night!! In the morning it was near 30 degrees. We 3 girls went out to gather wild blueberries, and Mom made blueberry cobbler and gave us all hot coffee to warm us up. Never has coffee been so welcome. And the deer that came near the campsite were an unexpected joy. And we went over to help new neighbors who arrived right after hitting a deer on thier way back to Michigan.
                                                            I never stopped drinking coffee, and still love it. DH blends a couple of different beans and grinds fresh every am. I am so spoiled.

                                                            1. Kona coffee candy, 8. We lived in Hawaii and my dad always had coffee candy.

                                                              Real coffee at 16, an unsweeten latte from the cute guy outside the Base Exchange. Didn't know you needed to add sugar to it and didn't like it. I didn't start regularly drinking it until I was 18 and working as a barista. While not an everyday beverage, it's more common to me than soda.

                                                              1. First cup had lots of milk and sugar. My parents acquiesced to my request thinking it was a way to get more milk into us kids. Later it was more coffee less milk. Little did she know the caffeine monster she had awakened.

                                                                1. my first real "cup" of coffee wasn't until I was in my mid teens, though anytime I was at a diner or restaurant with my grandfather, he'd take the little plastic single serve cream container and dip it into his mug and let me sip that... (Loved that as a kid)

                                                                  my daughter is 13 and she sometimes wakes up with a "need" for coffee... kinda scary. Glad to see others have had a regular coffee habit at at least that age, I don't feel so bad for letting her have a cuppa joe a couple times a week.

                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                  1. re: cgarner

                                                                    Both daughters started drinking morning cofee on a regular basis when they started high school. They had to get up at 4:30 in order to be out the door and on the bus at 6am,.

                                                                  2. I have no idea and am astounded that people recall their first cup of coffee. It strikes me as such a trivial event, as indeed, the first experience of any 'ordinary' food. (Heck, although I can recall various dishes of foie gras I have had, I can't at the moment think of the first).

                                                                    Do you remember your first glass of milk? Slice of pizza? Orange soda?

                                                                    Oddly, I do remember my first ground lamb patty (or at least a specific early lamb patty, I do think it the first). That was more the circumstance than the lamb - in a hospital, awaiting surgery , I was served dinner by accident and had one bite before it was taken away.

                                                                    11 Replies
                                                                    1. re: FrankJBN

                                                                      Coffee is for adults. Coffee is not for kids. Children know this. I see two kinds of posts: I was very young and got a peek into the adult world, or I was making my transition into the adult world.

                                                                      I think you'd get the same response if you asked about first kisses, first cigarettes, first alcohol, or similar. There's a lot of emotional significance to these things.

                                                                      1. re: ChrisOfStumptown

                                                                        How is coffee not for kids?

                                                                        Have you swung by Starbucks lately?

                                                                        1. re: ipsedixit

                                                                          Oh don't get me started. This is a huge, huge issue with me. I suspect that when you and I came of age, ipsedixit, coffee was not whipped into the unbelievably syrupy sweet concoctions that you can get nowadays--stuff that tastes more like caramel or chocolate than coffee. Thus the kids getting the venti caramel macchiatos with extra shots at the local Starbucks, or the "Turbo shot" caramel mocha lattes at our local Dunkin Donuts.

                                                                          Same with energy drinks: chemicals and lotsa, lotsa artificial flavor and sugar.

                                                                          I remember getting disparaging looks from my dad for putting two teaspoons of plain ole sugar in my coffee mug (which probably held what, 12 oz, tops?) when I was a teen.

                                                                          1. re: pinehurst

                                                                            But what does sugary coffee drinks have to do with coffee not being for kids?

                                                                            1. re: ipsedixit

                                                                              My kids drank it black, no sugar, just as I do

                                                                              1. re: ipsedixit

                                                                                Don't get me wrong--I see nothing wrong with kids and coffee. I do see the current Frankencoffee drinks that kids are guzzling as not ideal. The extra extra fatty extra extra artificially flavored and supersized sugary drinks are a far cry from the coffee of my (or bagelman's, or bagelman's kids') youth.

                                                                                1. re: pinehurst

                                                                                  Your observation of the sickening sweet and fattening drinks the yougsters can get at Starbusks is on track.
                                                                                  I live in a small suburb (30,000 people) where they roll up the sidewalks at 9PM and there are no fast food places except at the mall and on the border of a neighboring town next to a shopping center.
                                                                                  In the town center there is a Starbucks, which used to be full of those 12-17 years olds drinking that sweet swill. My 15 year old used to hang there last summer (at age 14) with her friends until the 9PM closing. She was the only one drinking black coffee.
                                                                                  This spring a Fat Free Frozen Soft Serve Yogurt store (simlar to Pinkberry, but self serve and pay by weight) opened across the driveway from Starbucks. The yogurt place is always hopping and I never see young teens at Starbuscks anymore.

                                                                                  1. re: bagelman01

                                                                                    Yes, same as near where I live. An Orange Leaf yogurt is now the go-to spot. (When I was a kid, it was Orange Julius...times change).

                                                                                    Good for your daughter! I compare her to my nephew, whose diet at age 16-- of chicken fingers, powerade and hotdogs-- belies the same palette he had at age six. He will, however, gladly plunk down 8 bucks for a mochaccino, or however you spell it.

                                                                                    PS super greyhound photo

                                                                                    1. re: pinehurst

                                                                                      My youngest is well trained, she would rather have that $3 black coffee and put $5 in the bank. Same social experience with her friends.

                                                                                      The Greyhound is our late 'Bailey' who was a victim of the adulterated Chinese wheat gluten fiasco about 5 years ago. $8,000 in vet bills and we couldn't save her. We have three other rescues, but no commercial dog food, I grill for them every day.

                                                                                      1. re: bagelman01

                                                                                        Lucky rescues...so sorry about beautiful Bailey.

                                                                                  2. re: pinehurst

                                                                                    You could make an argument for introducing coffee, black or lightly creamed, to your kid before he/she starts a Starbucks sweet coffee habit.

                                                                        2. Oh, does this thread bring me back.....I was just a wee one when I wanted the delicious smelling brew from my mothers cup, less than five years old (probably closer to three)

                                                                          What she would give me was coffee with milk in it, and I was horrified--that was NOT what I wanted!!! OH YUCK .....(keep thinking small child here....)

                                                                          I didn't get to taste coffee (the way I wanted it, at least) until my later teens, and you should have seen my silly smile upon getting it.....:):):)

                                                                          These days the tummy doesn't allow my beloved black coffee (yes, with sugar, sorry purists...) and if I do indulge--caffeine makes me a mental case--it has to be with cream......

                                                                          1. As a kid, I refused to drink milk, but I loved the pieces of toast that my father would dip in his coffee and give to me. Thus, was born coffee milk, which I happily drank as a child. Though it was mainly hot milk with a little coffee and some sugar, I loved it and drank it happily, and I couldn't have been more than about 5 or 6 years old when it became my morning drink of choice.

                                                                            1. when I was young, around 10, I was allowed to have coffee milk as a treat when we got donuts some Sunday mornings. I loved coffee ice cream and had my first cups on Sundays at church with plenty of sugar and cream. The summer I was 16 I spent a month with my grandparents and picked up my grandmother's habit of drinking it black. All the better to sip all day at any temperature - no curdles.

                                                                              1. Probably around age 17, a small cup of Dunkin Donuts coffee "regular" (in RI, that means cream and sugar) while working at the Thayer Market in Providence. Someone made a coffee run around 10 on Saturdays, and having started work at 6, I was more than ready.

                                                                                I soon cut out the sugar and eventually switched to milk, but never acquired a taste for black coffee.

                                                                                Of course, growing up in RI, I had been drinking coffee milk and eating coffee ice cream since I was a little kid.

                                                                                And now it's a rare day that I drink less than a quart of coffee (much more on weekends).

                                                                                1. First cup came at about 5ish years old. My mother would sit down every summer afternoon with a cup of coffee to watch Jeopardy. One day she got up to answer the phone and came back to find me sitting in her place chugging the cup of lukewarm black coffee she had left on the table. Almost 30 years later and the addiction is still going strong :)

                                                                                  1. Was in 8th grade and had been taken to Enrico's sidewalk cafe in North Beach San Francisco. We sat at a sidewalk table enjoying café au lait and vanilla ice cream, I felt very grown up. This was back in 1960 when Enrico Banducci actually still controlled it and the hungry i.