Cup of Joe in the AM

by Dave on June 7, 2008

2008-photos-mb-sony-196.jpgFor a quick cup of Joe head to Java Beach, located in the Village of Five Points Shopping Center. Ramsey and his staff provide excellent service, a wide variety of morning sandwiches, including my personal favorite, scrapple, egg and cheese on a croissant, and some of the best coffee in town.

Speaking of coffee, does anyone know why it is called a “Cup of Joe”?

The stories behind this name for coffee are as plentiful as its aliases: joe, java, jamoke, and mud.

According to Mavens’ Word of the Day, the leading theory connects the nickname to an 1860 song by Stephen Collins Foster, “Old Black Joe.” The American Heritage Dictionary seems to agree. However an examination of the lyrics results in no mention of a morning beverage.

Another theory holds that the beverage was nicknamed after Admiral Josephus “Joe” Daniels, who was secretary of the U.S. Navy during World War I. He abolished the officers’ wine messes in 1914, resulting in “dry” ships. But World Wide Wordspours cold water on that idea, arguing the phrase “cup of joe” first appeared in print in 1930.

World Wide Words leaves us with one last suggestion. The name could have been a modification of java or jamoke, which were other names for coffee. It could also have been influenced by expressions at that time, such as “an ordinary Joe.”

Whatever the real story, next time you’re at Starbucks for your morning fix, try ordering a “grande joe.” See if the baristas have any clue what you’re talking about.

Answer copied from

Photo is of publishers after several cups of outstanding coffee…..

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