Monday, April 18, 2011

Coffee Junkie

Okay, so I really like coffee. I have been drinking instant coffee since I was about twelve and grew a taste for real coffee soon afterwards, and there began my love.

I like real strong espresso cups, double shots, as well as "drinks" with coffee in them (meaning mochas, frappuccinos, etc. drinks that have about one part coffee, ten parts sugar and milk), and I like hot chocolate. Heh.

What I don't like is when people fuck around with my coffee and mess it up. I understand days where you are like "ugh, I feel like crap, let me half-ass at my job and hope nobody will notice." But at some point, they do. I have been a fan of Starbucks since about Sophomore year of High School (which was about 5 years ago), and I've been to a few of their restaurants (including a couple in Japan), and had quite a few variations of their drinks. For the most part, they are similar in taste and the way they make it across the border.

Not the fucking Starbucks downtown Palo Alto (CA).

Fuck, and it is not just one barista. It is every cup that I have had for the past month.
Given, I went there on only about three different occasions within this month, but hey - 3/3 is pretty darn high for a failure rate.

Now, I am generally not the one to make a scene in a restaurant or a customer service place, because I have been there, I have done that and I have been on the other side of the counter, so I know how it feels when a customer is not only unhappy with their purchase/food/service, but is also yelling at you while you try to make it better. That is not cool. So I generally just keep quiet. But I guess I need to vent somewhere, so instead of getting into an argument with already tired employees, I am going to dump it all on here.

Please note, that I am not ordering something as extraordinary or as long or complex as say, this: "Grande coffee in a venti cup with 2 pumps hazelnut, 2 pumps vanilla, 2 pumps caramel, 2 equals and 4 sweet and lows filled to the top with cream, with extra cream on the side, double cupped with no sleeve, a stir stick, and stopper put in the top." (First thing I got off the internet when I searched for "crazy Starbucks orders," so credit goes to whoever wrote it)

Side note, again: these were my coffee runs on my 15-minute break from work, where I could be sitting and reading a book instead of wasting money on something that is not nearly as delicious as I need it to be in order to keep on working.

Try #1
(I am super excited, because I have not had this in a while)
Order: A caramel frappuccino with lots of extra caramel on bottom, sides, and top.
Result: A caramel frappucino with a millimeter of caramel on the bottom, nothing on the sides, more ice than flavor, and a drizzle of caramel on top of the whipped cream.
Outcome: Unhappy Frowne.

Try #2
(A long while later, when I decide to give them another try, because hey - things happen. And I needed another fix)
Order: A caramel frappucino with a ton of extra caramel and an extra blended shot of espresso. With whipped cream. Oh, and lots of caramel. Did I mention that?
Result: Yet again barely any caramel. Is there a shortage? What is this madness?
Outcome: Complain-y Frowne. But only complain-y to my friends outside of the joint.

Try #3
(Today, when it was cloudy and a bit drizzly and I decided that a perfect way to spend my 15 minute break was to go and get a cup of hot chocolate with whipped cream and pretend that I am actually curled up on the couch in front of a fireplace)

Order: A hot chocolate with whipped cream.
Result: A brown-flavored water beverage with a pump of whipped cream on top.
Outcome: Fuck this joint. Not taking this bait again. I think I'd rather make my own coffee and drink that up.

Now my question is - HOW IN THE WORLD DO YOU FUCK UP HOT CHOCOLATE? Even I can make that, and I don't even cook! (You don't want to let me near the kitchen...)

Okay, I realize that I sound like a total spoiled bitch here, but when I pay around $5 for a drink, I expect it to be perfect. At the least, I expect it to be tasting at least remotely similar to the ones I have ordered before at the same coffee places, right? Wrong. Not at this Starbucks, nuh-uh! No, sir.

"We give you flavored water that looks like the drink you ordered." - should be their motto. Bleh. I have a funky after - taste after that brown-flavored water. Ugh.

On the bright side, not all Starbucks places are like this. I was shopping with Paul a while back and he wanted to get a death frappucino (kind of what I had ordered from descriptions above, except with more caramel and more shots). So when he ordered that, this kid (who reminds me of my brother - tall, skinny and young - looking) took about 7 minutes just to make our drink - he was so careful and so thorough with the order that I was almost afraid to drink it - and it was OH, MY GOD, made to perfection. I feel bad that I forgot his name, because you know...I would only want him to ever make my drinks.

I think I may have done well with venting my disappointment and getting rid of my insomnia. I also know that there are a few other posts that I can't wait to write about. But this one was just so...personal and I had to write it today - otherwise the effect would have been lost. Yay, me.

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