On Sunday mornings before brunch, Sterling College’s coffee connoisseurs gather for their weekly meeting in the Dunbar Dining Room. At each Coffee Club gathering, the members sample coffees from around the world. As the coffee of the week flows, so does conversation.
At a recent meeting, the members of the club were sipping a house blend that had been crafted by the club’s vice president, Neko Hulbert ’17. The coffees that formed this blend had been sourced from roasters in Mexico, Vermont, and Alaska, and represented the various coffees that had been sampled over the course of the semester.
Everyone has his or her own favorite coffee sample from this year. Mackenzie McCann ’17, the president of the club, chose Black River Roasters’ Breakfast Blend as her preferred coffee, given its earthiness, while Neko selected a Stumptown Coffee from Portland, Oregon due to its fruity notes and agreeable aroma.
When they were asked attributes they seek in coffee, the student leadership of the group provided rather varying answers. Mackenzie prefers earthy and nutty flavors, and isn’t a fan of fruitier flavors. Neko, on the other hand, tastes for smooth flavors and citrusy notes, as well as a pleasing aroma.
The Coffee Club was started in the Spring Semester of 2013 by student Lance Parker ’15. In the fall of 2014, Mackenzie McCann was appointed as the president. Mackenzie hails from Portland, Oregon, which has become the capital of coffee culture in recent years. For Mackenzie, the Coffee Club is about bringing hometown traditions to Sterling. “Growing up in Portland, Oregon, but attending school 3,000 miles away from home, Coffee Club provides a little taste of the coffee-drinking culture of the Pacific Northwest I grew up in. That’s why I took on presidency: sharing a carafe of coffee is my comfort food.”
This well attended club provides students with the opportunity to discuss and savor coffee. The club recently held a screening of A Film About Coffee. This film reveals all the elements that go into a cup of coffee, from the farmers in tropical countries, to the coffee shops in the US and internationally.