Intelligentsia, the cafe at Sunset Junction, now has a daily selection of coffees by the cup that range from $2.50 to $9. I met my favorite LA blogger there a couple days ago and we both had the medium priced brew ($3.75.) It was every bit as good as the Moka Java I've grown fond of from Trader Joe's.
Intel (it's what the trendomorphs call it, I hear) has "tasting events" for the beans they've bought at auction-- only in LA... and other coffee savvy metrosexual havens too before long, I bet. It sounds pretentious and ridiculous, I know, but this is what a life of denial during wartime is like, early 21st century.
I'm all for a well made cup of coffee. I even consider myself a coffee snob. But I feel that how you make your coffee, as well as the lightness of the roast (as opposed to the darkness) has as much to do with it as the pedigree of the beans. It's no secret that a strong cup of Folgers will rival any high end coffee-- at least in my book, so maybe it is a secret.
Here's how much of a nut I am: I grind my Folgers to a finer grade before I pop it into my individual cup size Melitta cone and voila, a perfect cuppa when you're stranded in a trendy coffee deprived locale.