In Tribute: The Water Canyon Brain Surgeon


I found out earlier this week that my favorite coffee shop in my home town, the Water Canyon, is closing its doors this weekend. There’s a chance that it’ll be opening again under new management, but the way the economy is, sometimes the “reopen” only lasts for a month or two. I saw this with a coffee shop out here in Prescott.

Regardless, I thought it would be fitting to put out a nice little tribute. The Water Canyon became a staple in “old town Yucca” shortly after I graduated from high school. It was a cozy place that had bands on occasion, wireless internet [trust me, this was BIG in a small town like Yucca], and most importantly, GREAT coffee. One night while there I stumbled upon a drink called the Brain Surgeon I think this thing was designed for those that need to stay up all night, but my half coffee blood adapted quite early to it and I drink it whenever I’m feeling like having something a little more flavorful.

The beautiful thing about the Brain Surgeon is that you get a really strong coffee flavor, with this undertone of sweetness after you’ve taken a drink. Having a little extra caffeine ramped into the drink also helps a bit (see below). 8^D I guess it really provides this nice balance between two extremes (strong coffee and sweet drink) with a little more slant towards the coffee side to keep it “pure” for coffee junkies like me. 8^D

Since I didn’t get a chance to get back to the Water Canyon all that often, I decided to work on perfecting my own copy of the recipe wherever I went. Interestingly enough, the Brain Surgeon sparked a nice friendship between a coffee shop owner out in Vegas at the hospital when the girls were there. Here’s how I build my Brain Surgeon when I’m out and about:

1. Order a medium/grande sized order of dark roast coffee. The dark roast gives you a stronger taste, and technically has a little less caffeine (if you’re worried about getting too amped up).

2. Add 4 shots of espresso. You can make it 3 shots if the coffee house knows how to brew some strong espresso.

3. Add 3 to 4 packets of honey to taste and stir like mad. It’s hard to nail this one down since each coffee shop uses different brands of honey.

The goal is to stir the honey so that it blends into the drink, and doesn’t just slowly coagulate down at the bottom, like a lot of honey I’ve found seems to do. The coffee shop in the hospital used a brand of honey that was pumped in, just like their various flavors. This brand (I wish I knew the name) worked perfect because it actually blended into the coffee and left no residue in the bottom of the cup, which provided the perfect taste balance.

There you have it! Rather simple, but profoundly good.

So go out to your coffee shop this weekend and make a Brain Surgeon in tribute. Keep it in your recipe list for future drinking as well. I will admit it is rather fun to see the look on the barista’s face when you ask for 4 shots of espresso with a straight face. 8^D

More importantly, to my fellow Yucsters, if you get a chance, go hit up the Water Canyon and order one up before they close your doors and/or post some memories you have of the Water Canyon here.



1 thought on “In Tribute: The Water Canyon Brain Surgeon”

  1. I’ve been away from Yucca for over 6 years now….and I still remember the many mornings using a Brain Surgeon to sober me before heading to work, from the previous drunken night.

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