After spending time in France in the late 70's, I came back with a new taste in my mouth: Coffee! I had hated it all my life until going to France. Then, every bar, every restaurant, anywhere you went, all had some of the greatest coffee I had ever tasted. I quickly became addicted, as I'm not a big drinker of alcohol. <br><br>So, back in the states, I immediately wanted to have coffee. Pughhhh!!! Nearly threw up. Everywhere I tried it was the same story. So, I began looking for the perfect bean, the perfect filter, grinder, etc., etc., and made my own. Everyone who tried it had the same reaction: they loved it and wondered why they'd never tasted coffee that good. Beats me; I always thought Americans were pretty smart, but after hundreds of years they had not even figured out the basic act of making coffee!<br><br>Over the next decade or two, I kept waiting for coffee to catch on over here. I tried every new coffeehouse. Often high on atmosphere, but the drink itself was swill. Even if they started off good, by the time they were a year old their coffee sucked. (ever hear of cleaning your pots???)<br><br>So, when Starbuck's came along, I resisted the urge to try it. Didn't want to be caught going into a franchise. Coffee was supposed to be precious and atmospheric and literary and cool and all that stuff. Can't do that in a franchise, right? <br><br>Then one day a pretty lady treated me to a Frappucino. It was great! Then I had their cappuccino. IT was great! They had mastered the art of making coffee, and they had franchised it! <br><br>Read my lips: Starbucks is NOT the Windows of coffeehouses. It may be ubiquitous, but it's some of the consistently best coffee you can get. Even the atmosphere in some of them is great. My local one is a neighborhood hangout, and it's what I always wanted in a coffeehouse, but never got simply because the idiots running them never learned how to make coffee. <br><br>So, don't bash Starbucks. It may remind you of the worst of capitalism, but until someone starts putting in something better, it's the best out there. Oh, I've been in some specialty places in certain cities that kick butt, but those are simply rare. You can't compare them, because they can't be duplicated elsewhere. Starbucks, for now, remains the best bet for good coffee anywhere you go. <br><br>Shooshie<br><br><br>-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-<br><br><br><br>Shooshie's Stuff
Where did I bash Starbucks?<br><br>NTO1 wrote:<br><br>Yes, I don't prefer Starbucks, but everybody drinks the sh!t, right? I wouldn't want to take a risk, and be patient, and committed to something I say?<br><br>I wrote:<br><br>Comparing the web to brick and mortar establishments (Starbucks) is like comparing apples and oranges. BTW... I've never set foot in a Starbucks.<br><br>Followed by:<br><br>Given that I can't stand the taste of coffee or the jitters that result from less than two cups... it's easy for me to stay away from Starbucks.<br><br>Did drink coffee for less than a year, about twenty years ago, and had to ask myself why I would put myself through such cruel and unusual punishment. Gave it up for good.<br><br>---------------------<br><br>Never heard of Starbucks twenty years ago... did you? Got the wrong guy... <br><br>
Poor Terry- he can't say squat without it somehow coming back at him! He's innocent, I tell you, innocent!! <br><br>I was the one that took a potshot at Starbucks!<br><br>:-)<br><br>I should have been clearer. Yes, if it wasn't for Starbucks, America would still be drinking swill. I give you that. I'm from Boston, and before Starbucks you have two choices there: Dunkin Donuts coffee (okay, donut sweetened somehow, will give headache, EXCELLENT iced coffee year round though) and Coffee Connection (hippie joint from late 60's that served red rocks dirt in hot water.. never had it but purists swear it makes Starbucks taste like McRonald's coffer).<br><br>Those were the two extreme choices. Bring in Starbucks, coffee improves everywhere in Boston. So yes, in this Euroducation of American tastebuds, you're right on the money.<br><br>However, Starbucks coffee isn't as smooth as it should be. I don't mind the flavor, but I swear they cut their coffee with seasalt or Uncle Tom's toothpaste. It's hard to say what's wrong with it until you go to a local competitor, and then you taste it. Granted, some local competitors have those little flavored coffee bars, which ain't Starbucks' quality but just pretends to be. But then there are other places, the hangout places, and I've never been to one that didn't beat Starbucks silly.<br><br>Anyone in New Orleans knows about a long coffee house on Magazine street that trumps Starbucks without trying. They're everywhere. Even SBC can put Starbucks to shame.<br><br>Anyhoo.. now I want some.. DAMN IT..<br><br>:-) <br><br>Everybody has a heart. Except some people.. BD
But then there are other places, the hangout places, and I've never been to one that didn't beat Starbucks silly.<br><br>No way. I've been to dozens. Once in a while you find a really, really good one. There's one near downtown Dallas in an area called Deep Ellum that's pretty good. But most of these little places just don't ride their employees to keep the pots cleaned and the coffee fresh. There's a French bakery chain--la Madeleine--which started out here. The original location on Mockingbird still to this day has some of the best french coffee there is. But the other locations often suck. It's just inconsistent, and that's what I'm talking about. Starbucks--at least the 50-odd locations I've been in--are very consistent, and they're nearly always hopping with neighborhood people, at least at certain times of the day. I enjoy the people, but I don't go to a coffee house for "cool." I go for coffee. You mentioned Duncan Donuts. My wife loves it. I hate it. I guess people's tastes are just different. I want coffee that tastes like the coffee in Paris.<br><br>Anyone in New Orleans knows about a long coffee house on Magazine street that trumps Starbucks without trying. They're everywhere. Even SBC can put Starbucks to shame.<br><br>I don't know SBC. I think the coffee house you're talking about in New Orleans is Cafe du Monde, which I've been to dozens of times. Yeah, it's a legend and all that, and the biegnets are great, but coffee-wise it's not really up to French standards. It's like a cafeteria, and again when you move that much coffee it's hard to keep it that good. <br><br>But I don't drink much plain coffee from Starbucks. I always get cappuccino or frappuccino, and that may be the discrepancy here. Perhaps their plain coffee is not as consistent as their cappuccinos. Well, whatever. But one thing for sure; the USA is taking its sweet time about learning how to make a good pot of coffee, but it's starting to show signs of improvement. <br><br>Now... for a good 5 cent cigar! (not in my lifetime!)<br><br>Shooshie<br><br>-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-<br><br><br><br>Shooshie's Stuff
Ok, ok. I mistook your "never set foot in a Starbucks" to be a comment on Starbucks. So you get off easy this time. I just took the opportunity to air my vicious vitriol at Starbucks bashers before they had a chance to bash my cappuccino pusher. You sure you're not going to bash Starbucks anytime soon? <br><br><br><br>Shooshie<br><br><br>-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-<br><br><br><br><br>Shooshie's Stuff
Loc: Milan (Italy) - Madrid (Spain)
I've never been in the USA so never tasted the Starbucks' coffee, but I immagine it like the italian one, am I right? In Spain they don't make coffee as good as here in Italy, but there's a country where they dominate the art of making coffee, and it was a surprise for me: Cuba.<br><br>
wow, how timely. Read this article if you're interested in coffee:<br><br>Coder's Guide to Coffee<br><br>Great read for a coffee lover.<br><br>"The heart of the wise inclines to the right, but the heart of the fool to the left." <br>-- Ecclesiastes 10:2
"In the old days, you'd finish a day's work and announce, 'I'm done.' Nobody ever does that now. There's never enough time." -- Elliott Masie
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