Laced Coffee


We recently hired a car to take a final road trip around Shimonoseki. We had plans to visit the 1,000 year old tree and bask in it’s ancient glory.

The tree was dramatic and rather sizable. We travelled with Kate and Joe who have seen the tree before but were keen to visit it one final time. There is little doubt it has been around for a 1,000 years! It is so old and has grown out in loads of directions, that little branch holders have been erected under most of its arms / branches. It speaks greatly of Japanese culture that they have dedicated time to preserve the tree and ensure it doesn’t collapse under its own weight. I am sure there have been many old trees in the UK that have destroyed themselves without anyone ever noticing…

After visiting the tree, our next stop was, as always, a coffee shop. The first two we tried were closed and so we then took a risk on a rapid google and I found the uniquely titled Coffee Milk Crazy in the middle of nowhere. And it was with our attendance at Coffee Milk Crazy that I took the crown from Dan for the most random coffee shop find.

At first, I was sent out of the car alone to peek through the closed wooden sliding doors. As I did so a very unique site met my eyes. Inside the very old Japanese style building, which was wooden with traditional tiles facing the ocean, was a purpose built glass and black walled box. Inside the box was a coffee barista and two very startled customers. I beckoned the others in and we entered into the darkness…

Inside the box we could chose from three drinks. The owner was dressed in a leather jacket and leather hat, and in the background there was a bowler hat. We assumed it depended how fancy he was feeling which hat he would wear. There were also two low hanging lamps which had bare bulbs with gentle glowing filaments. All of this added to the allure and drama!

Each coffee took around 10-15 minutes to make…we watched as our barista squatted down to very slowly and very carefully pour the water over the coffee grains. Our drinks also came in four parts, aiding that crown taking from Dan. We essentially enjoyed a liquid and coffee based four part meal; it took as long! First, we enjoyed a vanilla flavoured ice coffee. Second, our larger hot coffee drinks. The coffee was very black, very bitter, and very strong! To accompany that we had our third cup of heavily sweetened coffee, this was a chaser to the bitter coffee. Finishing up, a small shot of sweet, rich chocolate.

Afterwards, we stepped outside into the day light and enjoyed the views from the bench across to the ocean and rice paddies. At this stage we noticed along the roadside ‘advertising the cafe’ were four black flags. They had no writing on and just flapped gently in the breeze, mysteriously. At this stage, fueled on insane coffee and the strange experience we had just had inside the building, we began to question the true nature of the business…our coffee was surely laced with something?!

And so another coffee based adventure came to and end. Except that it didn’t. I’ve not been able to sleep since drinking that black, bitter, coffee…laced with…

Thanks #Yamaguchi and #CoffeeMilkCrazy

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