The success of coffee in Europe's rapidly booming cities resulted from the growing resentment against the effects of wine and beer. In England, France, Italy and Holland the coffee houses became an immediate threat to the saloons and bars.
Without the fear of intoxication, a gentleman could slake his thirst and fulfill his need for social and intellectual discussion. The literati, politicians, priests, courtiers and nobles began to patronize one or another of the coffee houses, which soon became the meeting places for their particular groups.
"By 1660, the coffee house was an institution in London and the beverage was sold all over the city. Four-pence tax was levied by the crown on every gallon of coffee sold," narrates Colombian Professor Andres Uribe, in his book "Brown Gold", the amazing story of coffee.
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