lifestyle

Let's be honest. Barista snobbery is getting out of hand.

Being from Melbourne, I have been drinking coffee since I could mix it with my mother’s breast milk. This is no shred of a lie.

I love it. I look forward to it every day. I get fond withdrawal-shakes when I don’t have it. I crave its goodness from dawn until dusk.

And since I started drinking this wonderful swirly brown caffeinated substance, I have stuck with ol’ faithful: The Cappuccino.

The cappuccino has everything. Caffeine? Check. Frothy goodness? Check. Chocolate? Check.

I stopped looking once I discovered it. I didn’t need to anymore because I had found The One. My search was over; my morning beverage consumption life was complete.

But recently, I’ve noticed that my choice of coffee has been called into question. I have caught more than the odd smug smile and raised eyebrow. I have even had people baristas confirming that I want “just a cappuccino”, as if it is somehow an unusual thing to ask for in a CAFE.

The baristas are coffee shaming me, you guys.

And I’m not happy about it.

Now, when I enter a cafe, my head is bowed as I order my cappuccino. I mumble my order and timidly look up to see the hipster barista  narrow their eyes at what I have said. I am damaging the integrity of the drink, I am insulting the illustrious nature of their artistic coffee making endeavours, I am endangering the flavour.

“The 1980s called, they want their coffee order back”, one snapped at me. Another simply took down ‘latte’ instead of cappuccino. Just like that.

And I know he heard my order correctly, I know.

I am a young like-to-think-I’m-hip woman, but I’ve realised that by simply ordering a cappuccino, the baristas have decided that I am no longer cool.

My coffee order is no longer socially acceptable.

In years gone by my barista and I would have a symbiotic relationship. I would be so grateful for their caffeine that I would pay whatever it took to get a good one. We would be friends, buddies, mates; we understood one another without judgement as to price or sugary sprinkles.

But now, their hipster beards have grown so thick and fast that it has invaded their brains and clouded their judgement.

Some cafes in Melbourne have actually banned soy milk, one of these being Market Lane Coffee. Its manager, Jason Scheltus, said about the decision, “it’s about serving a product that we believe in. You don’t go to a seafood restaurant and ask for a hamburger.” To Jason I would say that I do go to fish n chip shops frequently and ask for a burger, and if I want it with chocolate sprinkles then so help me, the customer is always right and I expect my goddamn chocolate sprinkles on it.

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And I’m not just shouting and screaming from the rooftops like a crazy person. I don’t think there are UFOs and nor do I believe the CIA have planted a secret chip in my brain. I have evidence for my theory; scientific(ish) evidence of the spreading epidemic of barista snobbery.

Exhibit A: On more than one occasion, my cappuccino has been presented to me sans-chocolate. Sans. Chocolate. That’s like bringing me a sandwich sans-bread. I know that it’s “better” for me, but that delicious sprinkle is the very reason I drink this slightly bitter, over-priced beverage.

Exhibit B: I have been asked whether I want a cold-drip or pour-over instead. These questions make me confused and ashamed of my go-to coffee order. As if I am somehow inferior because I like me a bit of froth and bubble.

And it’s not just me.

I conducted a very accurate coffee poll (i.e. asked some people round the office) and here are just a few examples of everyday barista snobbery that is creeping into and taking over all our lives:

One friend ordered a coffee with two equals, only to have the barista knowingly try and wean her off the artificial sweetener in her subsequent visits to the cafe. He started with two, reducing it ever so slightly so that she was down to getting just one equal with her coffee.

We only found out when we noticed him coyly pinching the bottom of the packets to avoid giving her all the sugar. Yes, two equals are excessive, yes, he did it in a genius way so that she never noticed a difference in taste, but the woman loves her sugar, so just back off.

via baileyd44 instagram.

Another friend was told sarcastically he must be an international man of luxury as he ordered two affogatos two days running.

When I’ve queried a barista as to why they are putting me through this daily grind (geddit? geddit? Grind, like coffee?) they say they are coffee purists who believed their beans should be enjoyed without pesky distractions like chocolate and sugar.

Which I kind of understand, except for the fact that I like the chocolate.

This barista snobbery is getting out of control.

In this fast-paced world, we’ve been given one thing that we’re allowed to drink at our desks, to socialise with, and to personalise with our own tastes.

One thing and one thing only, and we should be able to order it as we choose.

So baristas, friends, please let me have my guilt-free cappuccino back.

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