The most common story of coffee's origin is as follows: Once upon a time in the land of Arabia Felix, Ethiopia, lived a goat herder named Kaldi. Kaldi was a sober, responsible goat herder whose goats were also sober, if not responsible. One evening, Kaldi's goats didn't return home and in the morning he found them dancing in abandoned glee near a shiny, dark-leaved shrub with red berries. Kaldi soon deduced that it was the red berries that caused their eccentric behavior and it wasn’t too long before he was dancing with them!

Finally, a learned imam, or monk, from a local monastery came by, sleepily, no doubt on his way to prayer. He saw Kaldi and the goats dancing around the shiny, dark-leaved shrub with the red berries. Being more analytical than the goats or Kaldi, the imam subjected the berries to various experimental examinations - one of which involved parching and boiling. Soon neither the imam nor his fellows fell asleep at prayers. The use of coffee spread from monastery to monastery throughout Arabia Felix and, from there, to the world. We'll never really know if Kaldi or his goats dropped from exhaustion or if they learned to control their habit. We have learned, however, how to make the perfect cup of coffee and how to select just the right beans.