Food & dining

My Morning Cup

How does Sandra Smith take her coffee?

My Morning Cup features the coffee rituals that most of us have. People from all walks of life — from US senators to ballplayers, subway drivers to college professors — have submitted entries that will run most days.

Here, we reached Sandra Smith by phone. Smith is a panelist on FOX News Channel’s Outnumbered and a reporter for FOX Business Network who is serving as a moderator for the Republican undercard debate on Tuesday night.

Sandra Smith

Undercard debate moderator for the FOX Business Network debate in Milwaukee on Tuesday, Nov. 10.

Describe your coffee routine. Where do you frequent, what do you like?

I love a latte. I have one every morning. I have a Nespresso machine. Cosi is my favorite capsule. I try to make them at home. If I don’t, I try to grab them as I head through town or go to work. But it’s definitely an everyday thing for me.

Make or buy?

Make is my first choice. Buy if I have to.

When you buy, where are you going?

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Salzburg Patisserie in Rye, N.Y., is one of my favorite spots. And June & Ho. Those are my two spots for a good cafe latte in town.

And is it always a latte?

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So the only time I really vary it up is if I need something else in the afternoon. I will tend to get black coffee. Once I have had the latte with the milk, I don’t put anything in my coffee later. I love black coffee. As long as it’s good coffee. No cream, no sugar.

Iced or hot?

I’m really not a big iced coffee person. I always like hot, even in 90-degree summer weather.

Alone or with company?

I’m not a big, “Hey you want to go get a cup of coffee?” person. It’s all business with me. I tend to go alone. But if I’m making it at home, I tend to ask my husband first if he wants one. But another thing about how I take it: I like coffee really, really hot ... I like it so you have to sip it.

Where do you drink it? Seated or on the go?

I’m kind of a drink-it-on-the-go kind of person … Sometimes I’ll miss a train just to get a coffee.

Are you doing anything while you drink coffee? Reading the paper, listening to the radio?

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By the time I can actually drink a coffee in the morning — like when I’m at work, it’s when I’m sitting down to address my day. I bring up my calendar, my e-mail. It’s like, I got my coffee, I’m going to get my day straight.

How many more cups the rest of the day?

I definitely try to have my last cup of coffee by 1 p.m. It just doesn’t do me any good after that. I’ll have a decaf on occasion, if it’s later in the day. Or a half-caf. I stop rather early. I also start my days really, really early. I have two babies under two, so I start really early in the morning.

When and why did you start drinking coffee?

I was a tea drinker for a long time. And when I met my husband he drank lattes. I started drinking them after graduating college and I was in the work force.

Describe the most memorable cup of coffee you’ve ever had.

I would say definitely when my mother and I went to Italy on vacation together for a week. I loved the way they enjoy their espresso. You don’t take a to-go cup. It’s very much a moment. You get your espresso. You stop. And you drink at the counters. I loved that. Because here, we’re always so busy and on the go. I love the moment when you stop. And you use a real cup, not a paper cup. Now, I think when I have coffee, I should have it in a real cup. And stop and enjoy the moment.

So you’re going to be moderating the debate. Are you going to have a lot of coffee beforehand, so you have lots of energy? Or not have too much to avoid any jitters?

I will consider that. I’m going to be doing live TV during the day. I’ll probably have a half-caf in the morning. But if I have a latte — the debate’s at 7 p.m. Eastern — I’ll probably have something like that three or two hours before the debate. Just enough can be good. But too much will be a bad thing.

Interview has been edited and condensed. To submit your own My Morning Cup entry, e-mail Matt Viser at matt.viser@globe.com.