25 Weird Coffee Trivia to Astound and Amuse You

11th commandment: thou shalt drink coffee!

Photo by allygirl520 @ flickr
Photo by allygirl520 @ flickr

How well do you know your coffee trivia? Bet there are a few here to keep you entertained for more than a nanosecond.  Awesome coffee photos.

1 - The famous writer and French philosopher Voltaire loved to drink coffee. Just how much did he drink in a day? 50 cups. No wonder the guy was wired for sound!

2 – True or False: Some green coffee beans are actually stored for years before they get around to roasting the little gems. True. Why? Well, if they manage to store the beans in a proper manner, some experts hold the belief that certain beans actually improve with age. And to think I got my chops busted for trying to preserve ground coffee in the freezer. Because these guys are “experts” they are qualified to do weird and get away with it…

Photo by Cillian Storm @ flickr
Photo by Cillian Storm @ flickr

3 - You know when they decaffeinate coffee, well, just what do they do with the caffeine they take out of the beans? They used to throw it away into the garbage. These days they figured out they could be “green” and make a profit by selling it to the pharmaceutical companies. I’ll have some caffeine coffee-flavored pills, pah-leez.

4 - More about roasting coffee beans: When the beans begin to cool, just how many chemical substances do they release that make up those awesome aromas? About 700. OK, sign me up for roasting duty so I can get high on the fumes for free. Wow, what do you think that does to your brain on prolonged exposure? Volunteers, anyone?

5 - What is consumed so much in the United States that it represents 75% of all caffeine consumed? Duh, Coffee. We all could have answered that one before our first morning cup. I thought you needed an easy lob over the net. Good, wasn’t it?!

Photo by marfis75 @ flickr
Photo by marfis75 @ flickr

6 - In what two countries is the oldest person always served their coffee first as a courtesy? Greece and Turkey. (I told you to color your hair before we went on vacation!)

7 - We all studied American history about the Boston Tea Party where the ticked off colonists were angry about the heavy tea tax imposed on us in 1773 and dumped chests of tea into the Boston harbor. What new custom became an expression of freedom after that? Drinking coffee, of course, the beverage of angry rebels. That might explain our country’s temperament all these centuries later.

Photo by Digital Sextant @ flickr
Photo by Digital Sextant @ flickr

8 - When did milk in your coffee become popular? It was recommended by a French physician in the 1680’s as café au lait for medicinal purposes. (And we have been following his prescription ever since in Louisiana all these centuries later!)

9 - By the time of the Civil War in the United States what suddenly became a newly issued food ration to the soldiers because of its popularity? Coffee beans. I wonder if they had to roast their own blend.

10 - By 1900 what could you expect to be delivered to your door in the United States by horse-pulled wagons besides blocks of ice? Coffee. Door-to-door salesmen, the kind you like to see coming.

Photo by myvirtuallady @ flickr
Photo by myvirtuallady @ flickr

11 - How do Italians regard the drinking of espresso? For them it is a separate event, given a special time of celebration and not drunk during meals. Espresso is the new holy water. Hey! Don’t look at me like that. I figured that out when I visited Rome one year! The Pope (Papa) and espresso are Italians’ two favorite subjects to discuss with admiration.

12 - What is regulated by the Italian government because it is considered essential to the quality of daily life? Espresso. These guys are on to something.

Do you take palm trees in your coffee or just cream? Photo by billaday @ flickr
Do you take palm trees in your coffee or just cream? Photo by billaday @ flickr

13 - In the ancient Arab world women often did not fare well under the law. (Not so sure times have changed all that much.) What law allowed them to separate from their husbands if he did not do one thing for his wife? His number was up legally if he refused to produce coffee for his wife. Moral of that story: If Momma ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy?

14 - Other than brewing coffee as we know it how do they like coffee in Africa? They soak the raw coffee beans in water and spices and chew on them like yummy candy! These guys might be on to something here; what a caffeine jolt it must be!


Photo by roland @ flickr
Photo by roland @ flickr

15 – In the last three centuries in the West, just how many folks over the generations have switched from tea to coffee? 90% (It took 15 generations of humanity to figure out a caffeine buzz was worthwhile? If I weren’t white I’d ask the obvious, OK, I will, “why are white people so stupid?” … and why does that phrase sound like the name of a blog?)

16 – During the American Revolution where did the founding fathers secretly meet to form their national strategies? Duh, coffeehouses, the choice of rebels and renegades.

17 – When did the first Parisian café open serving coffee? 1689.  In which country was the first prototype of the espresso machine created and when? France and 1822. (It took them that long to even try to figure out a coffee machine? What were they doing all this time?)

Photo by scholastica ees/On & Off... @ flickr
Photo by scholastica ees/On & Off... @ flickr

18 – Yeah, but who were the guys who actually succeeded in manufacturing the first commercial espresso machine when the French couldn’t do the deed and when? Italy and 1906. (C’mon, you couldn’t guess that one? Ya need another cup of joe to wake up?)

19 – What’s the average age of an Italian barista? The old geezer is usually around age 48. Hey! Barista is a respected job in Italy as they take their expresso seriously!

Photo by INeedCoffee/Coffee Hero Bad Bob @ flickr
Photo by INeedCoffee/Coffee Hero Bad Bob @ flickr

20 – What nation of usually very cool people are not very cool when it comes to coffee drinking and why? Our buds across The Pond: the Brits. These crazies actually drink instant coffee over fresh brewed by the stats of 10 to one, unbelievable! It boggles the mind! Help! I can’t wrap my brain around even conceiving of such blasphemy…

21 – Moving right along to our friends the Japanese, next in line to be skewered, wait until you hear about their doings. What do the Japanese consider a great idea for skin treatments to ward off wrinkles? These guys do it up right on the decadence meter: they bathe in coffee grounds fermented in pineapple pulp. I’ll have to get back to you as whether this kinky idea really works… sounds like decadent fun though.

22 – While we are on the subject of Japan, what do they call their coffee shops? Kissaten. That almost sounds like its taboo or forbidden and therefore greatly desired.

23 – How do our friends in Japan rank in the world for their coffee consumption? Number 3! Pretty amazing stat there for such a small country.

Photo by scholastica ees/On & Off... @ flickr
Photo by scholastica ees/On & Off... @ flickr

24 – Do you think of coffee as a world commodity? How do you think it ranks according to other commodities globally? It is second only to oil. So, we need oil to fuel our cars and coffee to fuel our brains. Sounds like a fair exchange!

25 – What historical heretic actually thought he could get away with, gag, putting mustard and champagne in his coffee? Frederick the Great. I don’t know how long that “Great” part of his title stuck after the people found out he was putting weird stuff in his coffee…

Your Brain on Caffeine Buzz!

Photo by billaday @ flickr
Photo by billaday @ flickr

Comments are always welcome! 40 comments

Feline Prophet profile image

Feline Prophet 7 years ago from India

I'm sure this was fun to research! How many cups of coffee did you go through before you reached number 25? :)

Anthony James Barnett - author 7 years ago

Neat one, Denny. Well researched.

alekhouse profile image

alekhouse 7 years ago from Louisville, Kentucky

Fun and interesting hub. Enjoyed it.

Denny Lyon profile image

Denny Lyon 7 years ago from Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA Author

Hi, fellow Feline, thanks for visiting! Hehehe, coffee, love it! Voltaire and I might be related though I can't keep up with him as he drinks me "under the table." I do better with the jet fuel known as cognac... It really was fun to research and I have plenty more where that came from. A few extra cups of coffee does put a person in a slightly snarky mood for commentary! :)

Hi, Anthony, thanks for your kind compliment from an accomplished writer. Everyone: make sure to visit Anthony's blog where he talks about the world of writing and books, just click on his name to go to his blog Tell Me A Story. It's an eclectic blog so you will enjoy.

Hi, alekhouse, I can't be too serious all the time, a girl has to have some fun. Figured I'd do it out loud so others could grin along with me! Thanks for stopping by!

By the way, folks, none of these facts are copyrighted - just how it is written - use the facts to enjoy for your writing! Coffee and the cultures that have grown up around it over the centuries is like a study in anthropology (one of my minors at university, sigh...)

adamroll13 profile image

adamroll13 7 years ago from CAMDEN-WYOMING, DE

This is a well written and beautifully laid out blog. I loved learning about the britisha nd japanese propensity to drink the elixer of the gods, and I think britain is crazy for preffering instant to the real deal.

Smireles profile image

Smireles 7 years ago from Texas

I loved your article about coffee. Your research was excellent.

Denny Lyon profile image

Denny Lyon 7 years ago from Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA Author

Hi, adamroll13, thanks for stopping by for a visit! I'm with you, as cutting edge as the Brits are, what's with instant coffee? Of course, the London crowd are always in an extreme rush like New Yorkers so that may be the "why."

Hi, Smireles, thanks for visiting! Coffee is one of those subjects where we are all created equal yet can experience life differently! :)

loua profile image

loua 7 years ago from Elsewhere, visiting Earth ~ the segregated community planet

Fun information... Thanks....

Denny Lyon profile image

Denny Lyon 7 years ago from Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA Author

Hi, loua, thanks for stopping by for a grin!

Lowell's Notes profile image

Lowell's Notes 7 years ago

Great read :) I enjoyed this one very much.

Denny Lyon profile image

Denny Lyon 7 years ago from Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA Author

Hi, Lowell's Notes, thanks for stopping by for a grin!

hotspur profile image

hotspur 7 years ago from England

As a bud across the pond please note I am personally on the crusade against instant coffee and between the tea will stoke up my Bialetti pot and serve to anyone who'll sip it. There's hope for us yet....viva cafe...though tea is in the blood too...

Denny Lyon profile image

Denny Lyon 7 years ago from Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA Author

Hi, hotspur, instant anything - just can't go there as it is so devoid of energy, taste, nutrition, you name it. I love good coffee. I love my tea as well since I spent a good number of growing up years in Taiwan where I learned to drink tea without milk and lemon. Love green teas of all kinds. Love my Earl Grey all by its naked self on a chilly afternoon.

Then there's that wonderful hearty English Breakfast tea that is perfect for making Greek Tea for when you have a cold or flu: large mug of hot black tea, fresh juice from one half of a lemon, 2 Tablespoons of honey and 2 Tablespoons of cognac (or Greek Mextaxa brandy 5 or 7 star). Within 20 minutes you will heat up from the inside out and breathe better - guaranteed! :)

The reason I love tea the most is the Tea Mind you get which is so perfect for writing well! I wonder if there has been a study done on how tea affects the brain beyond the caffeine? Like the meditative qualities? That is reason enough to keep tea in my life. :) Thanks for stopping by for a visit; you're always welcome!

hotspur profile image

hotspur 7 years ago from England

Tea with alcohol! New one on me. Irish coffee etc yes...will try this for next bad cold. Thanks! English Breakfast tea made me wonder if I've seen this beast in England...don't think I have...Belgian waffles are probably just waffles in Belgium.

travel_man1971 profile image

travel_man1971 6 years ago from Bicol, Philippines

Have you heard of Java coffee beans? It should be eaten first by monkeys and you can collect it from their dungs because,they say it tastes so good. Nice trivia for my favorite coffee, Denny Lyon.

Denny Lyon profile image

Denny Lyon 6 years ago from Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA Author

Hi, travel_man1971, thanks for visiting! Looks like I'll have to start another hub titled: Creepy Things You Should Know About Your Coffee! :)

IdeaMorphist profile image

IdeaMorphist 6 years ago from Chicagoland

What amazing info, and I loved the photo selection

Denny Lyon profile image

Denny Lyon 6 years ago from Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA Author

Hi, IdeaMorphist, thanks for the visit!

Mike Chronos 6 years ago

Great hub on coffee trivia! Love the picture saying "do stupid things faster with more energy.." I almost want to get that made into a T-Shirt.

Sa`ge profile image

Sa`ge 6 years ago from Barefoot Island

Denny, loved this article, being an espresso nut myself I did such a research on coffee around the world. Hung out in a little coffee roasting cafe every morning, and got first hand experience with the roasting aromas ad the high one gets from it. Makes you always wanna be there each and every morning from half way through the roasting to the end of it. That's the best time to be there, so one has to be there early. :) Not living there anymore, so i miss it a lot. lovely work you do, please to keep it up, so I have to come back for more visits. aloha :)

Denny Lyon profile image

Denny Lyon 6 years ago from Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA Author

Hi, Sa'ge, thank you for your comment! I know what you mean about that indescribable roasting scent. Every time we pass by Community Coffee on our way to New Orleans we practically drift into a fantasy high! :) Who thought roasted fruit could smell so good?

Lynn Moore 6 years ago

Great photos and wry comments that did amuse me.

Denny Lyon profile image

Denny Lyon 6 years ago from Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA Author

Thanks for visiting, Lynn Moore! :)

billyaustindillon profile image

billyaustindillon 6 years ago

Brilliant hub - the Italians just went up in my eyes with the espresso monitoring. Voltaire wow so how many cups did the Ramones or Iggy Pop have a day?

Denny Lyon profile image

Denny Lyon 6 years ago from Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA Author

Hi, billyaustindillon, thanks for visiting! :)

elise 6 years ago

Love the coffee fun facts! Keep them coming!

Denny Lyon profile image

Denny Lyon 6 years ago from Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA Author

Hi, elise, thanks for stopping by for a visit! :)

sligobay profile image

sligobay 6 years ago from east of the equator

OK Denny, you got a thumbs up from me. I brew my own coffee fresh at home and hate burnt or overheated coffee left on the hot plate. Voltaire, your first caffeine addict mentioned, was your first human rights activist and called for an end to trial by torture. Yes, Voltaire in Exile, is an excellent read and discusses the cases that he wrote about. In the 17th century in France, before their Revolution, you could be tortured to death to try to force a confession. That makes the Joan of Arc bonfire look like a weenie roast. Support Human Rights - drink 50 cups of coffee every day. Cheers.

Denny Lyon profile image

Denny Lyon 6 years ago from Baton Rouge, Louisiana, USA Author

Hi, sligobay, thanks for the Voltaire lesson. It's amazing how little most people in America know about the case of torture throughout history.

RunAbstract profile image

RunAbstract 6 years ago from USA

Wow! You really did some research here! Impressive. And thanks for a great read!

kashmir56 profile image

kashmir56 5 years ago from Massachusetts

Hi Denny,very fascinating information on coffee a lot of it i did not know.It's always nice when i can learn something new from someone's hub,thanks!

Great hub!!! Thumbs up!!!

Malcolm_Cox profile image

Malcolm_Cox 5 years ago from Newcastle, England

I love this Hub! Very clever and fascinating. I used to work for Starbucks but still learned a lot!!!

mtsi1098 5 years ago

thanks for this - I love a good cup of coffee...

Aram 5 years ago

Coffee is actually not the second most traded commodity. It's a widely held belief, but at 22billion dollars falls short of being the second only to oil.


Thank you for the article!

meow48 profile image

meow48 4 years ago from usa

absolutely loved number seven. from an eternal nightshifter who drinks coffee at the three am slump time, thankyou for the tribute. it is truly the " elizer of the gods" hee hee. take care.

Tommy Nick 4 years ago

You sweetened my coffee with this one


Eria 4 years ago

Espresso regulated, I love it. I look forward to getting out of bed so i can have my coffee, without it getting out of bed would be a whole lot more difficult.


tommynick 4 years ago

I'm addicted to coffee trivia !


Awful Poet profile image

Awful Poet 4 years ago from The Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC) (m-M)_0 = 18.41, or 48 kpc (~157,000

This is such a refreshing hub Why thank you~ Ap

Chris 3 years ago

You do know that there is no 'X' in espresso, right?

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    Photo Credits and Links

    11th commandment photo by allygirl520 @ flickr

    Fab Photo by Cillian Storm @ flickr

    Blurred Coffee Cup Photo by marfis75 @ flickr

    Louisiana Community Coffee Photo by Digital Sextant @ flickr

    Virtual Lady Coffee Drinker Photo by myvirtuallady @ flickr

    Do you take palm trees in your coffee or just cream? Photo by billaday @ flickr

    Do Stupid Things Photo by roland @ flickr

    Sparkling Night Coffee Photo by scholastica ees/On & Off… @ flickr

    Coffee Speaks I Listen Photo by INeedCoffee/Coffee Hero Bad Bob @ flickr

    Coffee Reflection Photo by scholastica ees/On & Off… @ flickr

    Your Brain on Caffeine Buzz! Photo by billaday @ flickr


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