Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Flying High: Celebrating Space Travel and High-Altitude Coffee




Today we are celebrating flying high!

50 years ago today on April 12, 1961, Yuri Gagarin became the first person to travel in space. He is a much-celebrated cosmonaut, who literally set the standard for aspiring to lofty ambitions.

Five years after Gargarin soared beyond the earth's atmosphere, Alfred Peet opened Peet's coffee in Berkeley, California---in April 1966.

He too was ambitious, having immigrated from Holland in 1955 after spending time in Indonesia working for Lipton tea. He was also focused on altitude--specifically "high-altitude" coffee from Costa Rica, Guatemala, and East Africa. He found this coffee superior to what was available in the United States at the time.

Drinking a cup of Peet's coffee today, I was grateful for its strong aroma and slightly bitter taste---offset by just the right amount of skim milk.

Kudos to Gagarin and Peet---who both stand tall in the annals of firsts!