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The Coffee House - A Brief History - Guest Blog by John Heywood, Yorkshire Historian & Writer

The mid-17th century saw coffee’s appeal change from medicinal applications to a drink to be enjoyed. The first coffee-house to open was at the Angel Coaching Inn in Oxford around 1650 quickly followed by several more. These early establishments in Oxford were known as penny universities, as they offered an alternative to the formal academic learning of the colleges themselves. They were though, the preserve of the well-educated and the wealthy.  

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Rediscovered coffee species promises new levels of taste - Guest blog by Kevin B

Rediscovered coffee species promises new levels of taste    As coffee lovers, you are probably aware that the best tasting coffee (as provided by Recent Beans) is made from the Arabica variety. The next most common coffee variety is robusta, which is used in instant coffee and decaf. Robusta has a harsher flavour and higher caffeine content, and can be easier to grow. There are a further 122 coffee varieties, which typically do not have good flavours – a tasting note for one of them includes the phrase “gentleman’s urinals”. BBC Inside Science recently reported on a fascinating recent rediscovery of an old coffee variety, Coffea stenophylla, which in 1834 was described as having a superior taste to Arabica. BBC...

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