Perhaps you viewed the recent 20/20 segment in which John Stossel offered his signature “Give me a break!” riff on the cost of a cup of coffee… If you missed it, you can now read his illuminating prose in a “guest commentary” in a syndicated fish-wrapper near you:
DO YOU PAY big bucks for “better quality” coffee? Maybe you spring for Dean & DeLuca’s beans, which cost $12 per pound. Well, wake up ? have someone give you a blind taste test ? because you’re probably wasting your money.
Fancy coffee companies take great pains to make sure their coffee beans are “better.” “Specialty beans are roasted and ground for this important test, the cupping,” intones a video the Specialty Coffee Association of America sent me. In the cupping, “experts” sip small portions of the brewed coffee and judge its taste, body and aroma.”
Ah… the ripe smell of modern American “journalism.”
For a view on how the taping of the segment went down, click on over to Fortune’s place… she was the self-same taster who slipped in the sound-bite, “Coffee’s the most passionate and romantic beverage.” Go, Fortune!
The saddest part of this segment of journalism as ego-driven performance art is that Stossel could have offered the unvarnished truth: Price really isn’t always a hallmark of taste, or quality. With coffee, as with any other foodstuff or beverage, choose what you like.