At a conservative estimate, seventy percent of you guys reading this publication would consider yourselves to be coffee drinkers. Some of you like skinny lattes, others like black coffee and others prefer a cup with milk and/or sugar. No matter how you have it, coffee is undoubtedly one of the most popular drinks on campus, perhaps even more so than the ubiquitous Rum & Coke. We may drink a lot of it, but how much do we know about it? At UChicago, we are all about the pursuit of knowledge and this column aims to begin and sustain a conversation about coffee.

The writers of this column are Aaron and James, from the dotCross Coffee Project. For those who don’t know or only know a little bit about us, let us give you the lowdown. The dotCross Coffee Project was set up to cultivate the appreciation of coffee as a craft and artisanal beverage, similar to wine or cheeses. Coffee isn’t just a black, dark, bitter caffeine source. It is much more than that, and we don’t want its other aspects to be glossed over. Coffee is chock full of flavor and there has been a growing appreciation of that in recent years. If you have not had coffee that is best described as having apple or jasmine notes, citrus or grape acidity, we think it’s time you should. We hope that this column will become a guide for your trek through the world of coffee: both in terms of drinking coffee and in terms of knowing where coffee comes from.

A bit about us. We’re both Singaporeans, majoring in Economics (ha.) and we have had different backgrounds in coffee. Right now, we run the dotCross Project with the help of a few others and the Project does a couple of things. Recently, with the help of the Uncommon Fund and a handful of partners, we’ve been running coffee brew bars (free coffee) and coffee appreciation workshops (free knowledge) on campus. In true UChicago fashion, we spend a lot of time learning about coffee and we share all our findings along with a whole bunch of coffee related news on our Tumblr and Facebook.

We want to keep this column accessible to everyone of all coffee backgrounds. If you have any questions about the stuff we write, or actually, any question at all, hit us up at, and/or like us at It’s a conversation after all.