Photo: iprogressman (iStock)
Today I LearnedToday I Learned is a feature where The Takeout writers share something they learned today.  

I’m all about small life upgrades, the kind that take only an extra moment or two but measurably improve your daily routine. This morning I discovered a new one that, frankly, I’m peeved someone didn’t suggest to me earlier: preheating your coffee mug with warm water.

This glorious suggestion came to my attention via a tweet from friend-of-The Takeout and current Munchies editor Hannah Keyser:

Damn, Hannah’s dad, that is some brilliant stuff. I decided to give it a go this morning after reaching in to my pantry to pull out a chilly-to-the-touch coffee mug. My sink has one of those near-boiling-water faucets, so I filled my mug, waited 15 seconds, dumped the water in the wash basin, and then refilled my mug with coffee.

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What a wonderful experience. Not only does the warmed mug keep the coffee from going cold quickly, but it’s a more pleasant, less jarring tactile experience to lift a warm mug to your lips than a cold one. I hate the commercialization of this word, but dare I say it’s sort of hygge? Coffee is my most important morning ritual; it sets the tone for my day. So finding a new super-quick upgrade—not a v60 pour-over or Burr grinder or adding grass-fed butter—is a big win for me.

When I shared this revelation with my coworkers, Takeout editor Kevin Pang mentioned that his wife preheats their dinner plates in the microwave until warm, before plating their food. Restaurants do this, why not steal their method for home use? A quick 45-second zap to create a warm plate sounds like time well-spent. Too bad that tip is predicated on my owning a microwave.

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