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Coffee Yarns

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  • Coffee Yarns

    Recently, at a city espresso bar, I ran into the American philosopher and bon-vivant B.V.McBride. Everyone just calls him Mac and I darent enquire after his first name just in case its Bon. He asked me the following question "What, he said, is the difference between the best cup of coffee in Australia and the worst cup?"
    Sensing a riddle, I replied "50 cents". For a moment he seemed taken aback but then observed that the difference in the best and worst glass of red hed had on his current visit was 40 dollars.
    I felt relieved....glad that I wasnt redwinejourneyman.
    As I prepared to leave, he looked up from his double ristretto which contained his preferred mix of Belgian couverture chocolate and pronounced. "You Australians, when you are out and about, over 95% of you know what brand of beer you are drinking, but less than one in five know brand of coffee is in front of you!"
    Unfortunately, he noticed my quick glance to the brand on my now empty cup of coffee and with a smug look he returned to reading the book God in a Cup.
    He had said he would stay on in the espresso bar until he finished the read. I wonder if he could still be there?
    Cheers, CJM.

  • #2
    Re: Coffee Yarns

    CJM: the Damon Runyon of CoffeeSnobs

    This is meant as a compliment to your literary style which somehow reminds me of Runyon.

    Keep them coming.

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    • #3
      Re: Coffee Yarns

      Remember that television commercial a long long time ago about the guy who so liked the shaver that he bought the company.
      Appears that Aussie Tour de France cycling legend Robbie McEwen so liked his coffee at Piccolo Espresso he bought the cafe.
      Ive been hanging around there lately, keeping an eye out for him. I know hell want to hear about the time I came 237th in the Nelson Bay Cycling Classic back in 1982.
      Cheers, CJM.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Coffee Yarns

        Originally posted by 39253537246F63560 link=1243981563/2#2 date=1244153863
        I know hell want to hear about the time I came 237th in the Nelson Bay Cycling Classic back in 1982.
        I hope there were more than 237 competitors!

        I wonder if cafes are a retirement or investment option for sportspeople. George Gregan started up his own coffee chain around 2005-06. Im sure Ive read of others

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        • #5
          Re: Coffee Yarns

          Originally posted by 58524750505F4B4D3E0 link=1243981563/3#3 date=1244154998

          I wonder if cafes are a retirement or investment option for sportspeople. George Gregan started up his own coffee chain around 2005-06. Im sure Ive read of others

          Campese, Lucas Parsons for starters....

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          • #6
            Re: Coffee Yarns

            Originally posted by 2129313B26420 link=1243981563/4#4 date=1244155647
            Lucas Parsons
            That one did come to mind. It looked as though he used the coffee machine pretty well when they showed him on the show. Hes doing pretty well and a really down to earth guy.

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            • #7
              Re: Coffee Yarns

              About 26 years ago after meeting young Luigi Colluzzi - OS -Tahiti I used to visit Colluzzi Bar every time I was traveling down from the North Coast to visit Mum in Kiama. One day I got in early and I had about 12 Short Blacks, made a mistake in walking out into the afternoon sun, not that there is much  sunshine in Darlinghurst..

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              • #8
                Re: Coffee Yarns

                You know, Ive had so many coffee misadventures, my wife once called me "Coffees Mr Bean".
                Sorry about that one.
                Last September we were staying in a town a little south-west of London. Checking out the local coffee scene, I spied a likely prospect-had an Italian barista too. Now unfortunately I am one of those 91.3% of Ausralians who prefer milk with their coffee and what does a man have to do to get a flat white over there? In the next few days I tried ordering everything from a latte in a cup to a cappuccino, no chocolate and dont pile that froth on top please. In frustration, I drew for him on a 6cm square yellow post-it a picture of what it should look like. Ill admit that he did try and when he asked if he could keep the picture, I agreed.
                This was my BIG mistake.
                The next day as I sat there sipping his only slightly improved version of a flat white, out of the corner of my eye, I saw him showing the picture to some customers and pointing in my direction. Their grins said it all.
                I can picture him there today, behind his machine,my picture somewhere handy, glacing to the door, waiting, hoping for me to arrive. With all that economic gloom and doom over there the Brits havent had a good laugh for a while.
                Cheers,CJM.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Coffee Yarns

                  Now I know I dont get over to Perth that often and last year was only for a few days but I have to say that one of the best things that Perth has going for it is an espresso bar (sorry I cant name it but I havent got my 50 posts yet). Entering the establishment after an epic walk down Hay St. from the central CBD, I noticed a sign at the end of the counter. It congratulated barista Vanessa on her recent competition success....I would have to try one of her coffees! Then, as I read on, a voice greeted me and asked for my order.
                  Which of you, I inquired, is Vanessa?
                  Back came the reply, "I am!" times three. As I turned to look, there, behind all of the coffee machinery on the counter were three male baristas.
                  Interesting place that....two Synesso machines and three blokes called Vanessa!



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                  • #10
                    Re: Coffee Yarns

                    And the coffee?? //\///\/

                    Or were you too surprised by the three guys called vanessa to even order one??

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                    • #11
                      Re: Coffee Yarns

                      Id describe the coffee as "epic".

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                      • #12
                        Re: Coffee Yarns

                        Just to be serious for a moment, one of my daughters is working as a Vet just out of London and , like many of us who have been over there, hadnt been able to find a decent coffee. Using the coffee forums, I found a cafe for her and here is an extract from her email 12th June:
                        Not a bad flat white here at "Flat White" in Soho. The interior is fairly plain, just a thin, long shop with a row of tables down one wall and a coffee machine on the other. The place is packed with Australians. I had 3 coffees to make the most of it.
                        Not coffee related but just for those who are fans of James Herriot. She goes on to say;
                        Had a dog come in the other day (from another surgery) which had a castration operation that had opened. I managed to temporarily skin-glue my fingers to the dogs p-n-s while gluing shut the wound, much to the mirth of the owners. Although I managed to pry my fingers from its skin, I had little dark hairs on my fingertips for the remainder of the day. Today, a rabbit we were examining, had a heart attack due to fright and its heart stopped. After 20 minutes of breathing for it through its nostrils, I managed to get it back. Im sure no other Vet would have bothered to breathe for it but Id feel bad if I didnt do I all I could.

                        Im wondering if it had an out of bunny experience!

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                        • #13
                          Re: Coffee Yarns

                          Once upon a time life was simple.
                          There was just me and Nescafe blend 43.
                          Then along came those Di B guys and their Dulci Sapori blend and now things arent so simple. This CJM character and his love of a coffee is taking over my life. Like, a Sunday drive down to Byron Bay and a random walk around the town precinct isnt so random for me anymore. Ive done my research on the coffee hotspots. I know EXACTLY where Im going!
                          And we dont have normal holidays......just coffee holidays. Last year in Rome, I managed to neatly sandwich the Coliseum between two coffee outlets I had researched. This year, the wife (who doesnt drink coffee) wants to go to Milford Sound and Im saying "Why would you want to go there?" "You wont find a decent coffee anywhere." "Now how about Melbourne?" "Remember last time we did the tour of the top cafes and when we arrived at BBBs it was closed for the day and all we could do was stare in through the glass......those huge hoppers, the Synesso, the Clover......and besides, they say Melbourne is really nice this time of year!"
                          Friendships forged on common interests of rugby, beer, AFL etc. seem to have waned. Matter of fact, it was probably about the time I started to use phrases around them like-"A good coffee is just as good as a beer." And when the boss puts on free drinks after work, I find myself slipping away ASAP, heading for my local espresso bar before they close and asking for a pint of that Dulci if you please. Besides, theyd be expecting me. She claims Ive no friends anymore but Ive got dozens of them. Its just that they are all baristas and I drop around to see at least a couple of them everyday but I cant always chat with them..........they might be serving other customers!

                          Footnote: Please dont be concerned for me......after all its only a yarn and I hope that a few of you can identify with some of the points Ive made.

                          You know, one of the things I enjoy about life on the Gold Coast this time of year is that at 6.30am the sun is rising over the ocean at the same time as this iconic cafe overlooking Miami Beach is opening. Usually I am just in shorts and T-shirt, but this Saturday morning the wind has blown the rain through the cafe so that, in the early dawn, there are about a dozen of us, mostly strangers, sitting or standing around the only dry lounge in the place and as usual, the coffee is excellent. These gen Xers are a good-humoured and sociable crowd and, as I reluctantly leave, they are laughing with a guy who has just noticed that he has been standing in several centimetres of water and he still has his slippers on-courtesy of his haste to get across for a coffee!
                          But I have gleaned an important piece of information about a new French cafe with one of Melbournes top brands of coffee,a BFC Synchro machine and a chef direct from Palazzo Versace.....and its only a quarter hour drive from here in the hinterland. A bloke should get a good coffee there and a half decent brekkie. As I climb into my car, CJM is back in control and now I know EXACTLY where we are going!

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                          • #14
                            Re: Coffee Yarns

                            CJM...your stories are great, love reading them and yes, can relate to a lot of what youre saying...

                            Loved how you ended up with slippers on to get your coffee, nothing unusual there! A good cafe should appreciate that a local has made it their no 1 priority to get down first thing to get a hold of that first cup of coffee!

                            And many a friendship has been formed over coffee, I feel...and will continue to!

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                            • #15
                              Re: Coffee Yarns

                              Originally posted by 2F3F3333283D033B3D305C0 link=1243981563/13#13 date=1245639983
                              ended up with slippers on to get your coffee, nothing unusual there!  
                              ...unless they were...


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