Roughly 83 percent of American adults drink coffee regularly, adding up to an impressive 587 million cups of java consumed per day. How many of those coffees are actually good is another question altogether: Consistently excellent espresso can be rare, even if a brewer is consistently making it.
That is, unless you’re thinking like a scientist. Christopher Hendon, Ph.D., assistant professor of computational materials and chemistry at the University of Oregon, is part of a team of scientists doing just that. On Thursday, at the 255th National Meeting and Exposition of the American Chemical Society in New Orleans, Hendon and his team are presenting what they claim is the best method for making reproducible, delicious espresso coffee. Chemistry plays a major role in creating a great cup of joe, but physics and mathematics are especially important. Hendon would know — his nickname in the academic world is “Dr. Coffee.”