Paris Blues and A French Press
Paris Blues in Harlem (Photo by Santiago Hermo)
In this weekly WFUV feature, our staffers choose three things that make their days better. Saturday morning host Janet Bardini runs on good coffee, loves her Manhattan neighborhood, and devotes part of her life to alternative medicine.
When my broadcasting career was in full swing in the Nineties, I came down with the dreaded disorder of chronic fatigue syndrome. I chose the alternative route of acupuncture and traditional Chinese medicine to restore my health. My interest in East Asian medicine brought me back to school: I became a Doctor of Chinese Medicine in 2002 and continued my studies in Beijing in 2004. I am passionate about practicing this medicine and experiencing firsthand how natural remedies that are thousands of years old continue to heal us today in our modern world.
I never thought I would be an "uptown girl." Harlem, my community for 12 years, continues to grow on me. Walking down the brownstone-lined blocks, I feel this neighborhood's history. So many prominent people have called Harlem their home, like Count Basie, Langston Hughes, Malcolm X, Billie Holiday, and Dizzy Gillespie. And even Bob Dylan made his home on the landmark street of Strivers Row in the Eighties. My favorite old-school music hangout is Paris Blues Jazz Club, the inspiration for a short movie that's part of PBS's 2019 online film festival.
A Good Cup of Joe
Forget about all the fancy contraptions out there! My method for a great cup of coffee is simple and pure: grind your own beans, put two scoops in a small French press, add fresh filtered boiled water, stir, wait five minutes and voilà! Heaven in a mug. No sugar, just a good dash of organic half-and-half. Drink it super hot. My fave beans are from Marie's Coffee and Gifts on Arthur Avenue in the Bronx and Trader Joe's Fair Trade Organic Bolivian Blend (a super good value). And if you have leftover coffee (really, leftover coffee? What a concept), put it in the fridge and enjoy it on ice for another day.