Friday, September 23, 2005

Coffee Talk

Remeber back in the late 90s when a lot of people thought that Starbucks and Bill G. were trying to take over the world? Those days are long gone, of course. Old habits die hard, however. Syracuse is not the hippest town on earth, and if you don't believe me, think about this, downtown Syracuse got its first Starbucks coffee shop a couple of months ago. I visited this store yesterday for the first time. I'm not coffee or caffiene addict, but I like to have a cup of coffee a couple times a week. My coffee shop of choice has always been Freedom of Espresso, a local joint right across the street from the new Starbucks. While I have managed to suppress my Starbucks-hating reflex, I never really considered crossing the street. I took the moral high ground by telling myself that I like the coffee at Freedom better, it's cheaper, etc., but really, I had no idea if any of this was true.

Yesterday's visit to Starbucks pretty much confirmed what I already knew. Their coffee tastes good. Of course, I don't think it's too difficult to make a cup of coffee that tastes good. As long as you're make it strong, don't use any stale ingredients, and don't put in any flavored syrups, it's pretty hard to make a bad tasting cup of coffee. My two complaints are the same that I have about every Starbucks I've ever visited; their "small" size is too big and they serve their coffee too hot. Freedom of Espresso's small size is actually small, and the coffee is not so hot that you have to let it cool down for a few minutes before drinking it. Plus it's cheaper.

While I'm on the topic of coffee, I have to say that while I didn't think Kicking and Screaming was that great of a film, it has two redeeming qualities. The first one is the way it used coffee to symbolize of Phil's [ Will Ferrell ] descent into madness. The second was a better than expected acting performance by Mike Ditka. I still wouldn't pay money to see if (I saw it on a flight), but if you do see it, at least you've got coffee and da coach to look forward to.


MDS said...

What do you mean there's no ice? You mean I gotta drink this coffee hot?

dusty said...

Oooh! Navy Seals!

dhodge said...

It is funny how a comment that sounded utterly absurd when the movie "Clerks" was released is now a semi-legitimate request. You'd still look like an idiot if you ordered a hot cup of coffee and demanded some ice to cool it down, but I don't think that even Dante Hicks ca. 2005 would be irritated if someone walked into Quick Stop and asked for an iced coffee. Unless he was playing a game of street hockey on the roof of the store, of course.

MDS said...

Even when Clerks came out, the guy who demanded ice was the most reasonable of the three customers in that montage. A person who stands in front of a sign reading "New Movies" and asks, "So do you have any new movies in?" is pretty clueless, and a person who walks into a convenience store and says, "Do you sell hubcaps for a '72 Pinto hatchback? Ooh, Mini Truckin' Magazine!" is an absolute moron.

Honestly, aside from the strident tone of his demand, I don't think the Ice Man was unreasonable. If you walk into a convenience store and find that the coffee is too hot, I can understand why you'd ask for ice. And you'd think a place that sells cold beverages would probably have some ice on hand.