I started life in the UK as a tea drinker, naturally enough. After living in the USA for many years I am now a pretty hardcore coffee drinker, and my wife and I "know what we like" as far as the taste, aroma, and type of cream we use. While I don't think we could be called true "coffee snobs" - we are too frugal for that - we do have a formula that we like and expect.
Like most foodie-type things, you can go a little crazy seeking out the perfect cup of Joe; and yet there is a lot to be said for at least being familiar with some of the many elements that go into making a good brew - or at least the best brew you can get for your budget.
Ars Technica has an article on The Science Behind A Good Cup Of Coffee, packed with all the knowledge you could want to sling together some righteous java.