All self-styled coffee aficionados know that, in recent times, it has become virtually impossible to achieve a clear win in a coffee bragging dialogue (CBD).
Every connoisseur worthy of challenge owns a sophisticated coffee machine, and, with hundreds of coffees from which to choose, anybody can enthuse about a type of which his or her opponent is unaware - naturally adding the denouement: "I'm surprised you've not heard of it."
Most CBDs have thus ended in predictable draws.
This magazine has learned of a new gambit, however, which has shattered the national impasse.
'I was devastated when an acquaintance used it on me,' admitted an anonymous coffee aficionado. 'I'd explained to her that my Jura Impressa Z6 was, without doubt, best for making coffee from Kopi Luwak beans,' she continued, describing her defeat. 'I ended by saying how surprised I was that she'd never tried it. I was expecting similar comments from her - leading to another CBD draw.
'Instead she replied: "Oh, Darling, I didn't think anyone was still using those old fashioned machines. We employ our own barista. Ivan formulates coffee to our exact requirements."
'I just burst into tears,' our informant confessed, 'and fled the dinner party.'
The cost of making coffee with modern machines is, of course, spiralling. A few Nespressos each day add up to thousands of pounds a year. The winner of the above CBD had brilliantly reallocated that money to employ an eastern European barista.
This "Barista gambit", as it has been named, will have doubtless become commonplace between the writing of this article and its publication. The genius of the gambit, however, is that it facilitates further denouement developments.
Those reported to our lifestyle editor prior to publication include:
"Of course, Bulgarian baristas have a natural flare for coffee. We wouldn't employ any others."
"Of course, Yasen arrives and makes coffee within ten minutes of our text."
"Of course, I'm learning Croatian, and Stefan writes a new Croatian word as latte art on each cup of Cortado."
The world of coffee bragging dialogues seems finally back on track.