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Vancouver coffee. Its bad! Im in CS hell!

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  • Vancouver coffee. Its bad! Im in CS hell!

    Hi All,

    Long time since Ive posted on this forum but I just have to tell you all how bad the coffee is in Canada. Im visiting friends in Vancouver at the moment and am astounded at the crap that people are drinking here. The funny thing is you only have to walk a few metres to be in front of one of the hundreds of coffee shops. Not cafes, because I consider a cafe a place that can provide you with a coffee that is worth drinking.

    Starbucks have the monopoly here (about 80 stores in the downtown area alone!!) and they have no idea how to make a coffee at any of them! In fact, I can honestly say that my worst ever cup of coffee in Adelaide is still a whole lot better than anything Ive drunk here. Tim Hortons and Blenz are a close second with the franchise volume but the quality of their coffee is as bad as the Starbucks. I have been blessed with the skills and knowledge (gratefully assisted by many on this forum) to make what I consider fantastic coffee compared with the shi% they give you here.

    If any CS is considering making some money in the coffee business then Vancouver is the place to come and either open up some competition (because people will buy your coffee no matter where you are located downtown. They drink it constantly. Imagine how much theyd drink if it tasted good?) or provide a consultancy service to every damn coffee shop in this place to provide them with some barista training. The people that work at these places dont deserve to be called baristas. I guarantee that If someone from this site who has training as a barista and tasting coffee then there is money to be made here lifting the low standards that Canadians obviously have been accustomed to when it comes to coffee. Its crap!!!!

    I miss my EM6910 and I have to wait another 3 weeks before I can make a home brew

    I was wondering if anyone else has experienced the coffee hell im currently in whilst travelling this globe?

    Its so bad Im considering a cup of nescafe. I know.....Thats how terrible it is!

    Saambo

  • #2
    Re: Vancouver coffee. Its bad! Im in CS hell!

    Wow ... have you checked out any of the places that the coffeegeeks are always talking about? 49th Parallel? Elysian Room? Artigiano? Wicked Cafe? Prado?

    This article has heaps of information: http://www.coffeegeek.com/opinions/cafestage/11-19-2007

    I know that a fair bit of coffee is decaffeinated in Canada; I wonder if that means that they get a good amount of green there. At the very least, Im sure that being close to north and south america opens up a lot of buying opportunities that we dont get over here.

    Let us know how you go.

    Cheers,

    Luca

    PS. The 49th Parallel branded cups are kinda cool. The 4.5oz one is a really nice tiny size for a cappuccino.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Vancouver coffee. Its bad! Im in CS hell!

      Thanks for the article link Luca.

      I visited Artigiano for breakfast on my first day and would say its the best coffee Ive had here but a long, LONG way from being a good cup.

      Ill endeavour to try the other places mentioned in the article and let you know. Its obvious that Franchise coffee in this city is a definite no go. They dont know what theyre missing.

      Saambo

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Vancouver coffee. Its bad! Im in CS hell!

        hehehe...its not the quality of the greens available to them Luca, its what they do with it at the coffeehouse end. The qualities of their greens and / or their insistence to use a majority of arabica in their blends (instead of robusta as with the Italians) is the same as what is available to us here.

        Thinking outside the square, you could describe the way coffee is done over there is a "cultural thing, and the locals are used to it and probably like it, and they might therefore turn their noses up at coffee done our way!  There are several countries around the world that do their own things to coffee, and its all perfectly acceptable in their culture!

        If you look at the Italian way of doing commercial espresso for example, even the American SCAA  / Australian / NZ ways differ. These differences form the basis of why for example, part of our "signature spec" for the set up of machines we import, is to have them pimped to work at their best in consideration of the different way we make espresso here, and to account for the way our blends differ from and therefore behave in comparison to the accepted Italian norms!    

        Note, I am not disagreeing or disrespecting, just placing an opposing viewpoint for interest.

        There are a lot f places where I dont drink coffee, including over here!

        Regardz,
        Attilio (real name)
        aka FC, first / original CS commercial site sponsor

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Vancouver coffee. Its bad! Im in CS hell!


          That is a sad travel story Saambo, I hope you are doing some "good holiday stuff too", dont let the bad coffee spoil your trip.


          So what are their pours and process like? Are they turning-out jumbo sized gushers or do you think that their "take on the roast" is different?

          Im curious what they could do to be so far from what you know.

          Maybe you need to jump the counter in a smaller venue and make your own (I have known more than one CSr to do that before).

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Vancouver coffee. Its bad! Im in CS hell!

            Originally posted by Andy Freeman link=1199341066/0#4 date=1199372772
            That is a sad travel story Saambo, I hope you are doing some "good holiday stuff too", dont let the bad coffee spoil your trip.


            So what are their pours and process like?  Are they turning-out jumbo sized gushers or do you think that their "take on the roast" is different?

            Im curious what they could do to be so far from what you know.

            Maybe you need to jump the counter in a smaller venue and make your own (I have known more than one CSr to do that before).
            To tell you the truth I havent been paying too much attention to the techniques used here. Ill have a look and see whats happening when I buy my next brew. I appreciate that different flavours appeal to different demographics but theres not much chance of me coming round to what they drink here. Im only here for another week though and then Im on to the UK. I have no idea what Im in store for over there either.

            As an aside, I am doing more than drinking coffee while Im here. Its a lovely place but Ive come in the middle of winter. So Its cold and the days are short (gets dark about 1630). Lots to see and do though. Off to a NHL game next week. Cant come all the way to Canada and miss out on a game of ice hockey!

            I miss the long Adelaide days. Not the extremes of heat though!

            Its not all about coffee though. Im on holidays so relaxing and winding down from a busy year is my agenda. 2008 is going to my best year

            Saambo

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Vancouver coffee. Its bad! Im in CS hell!

              Originally posted by Saambo link=1199341066/0#5 date=1199413134

              I miss the long Adelaide days. Not the extremes of heat though!
              I bet you wont be - we had a week of 40+ last week and one cool day and it is starting to heat up again. :-/

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Vancouver coffee. Its bad! Im in CS hell!

                If you think Vancouver is bad, I suggest you skip the uk...

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Vancouver coffee. Its bad! Im in CS hell!

                  Hi all

                  Just to let you know that my travels in Canada ended happily following the suggestion from Luca. I found the Elysian Room and ended my search the moment the coffee touched my lips. I even talked them up before I ordered and said Id been referred to them from an Australian website. The barista was a yound lad that had obviously poured a latte or two based on his skilled latte art (although that doesnt guarantee itll taste good its a good start to let me know he knew how to make a coffee). The taste was fantastic! It was as good a cup as Ive had anywhere. It was great to finally come across a place that made coffee worth drinking (and enjoying!). The bus ride to get a further cup or two was worth it...Starbucks should meet the people at Elysian and really have a business worth marketing.

                  Once again, thanks to the tips from CS I was able to maintain my enjoyment of the coveted bean...even when I was many miles from home....Vancouver had me worried until I asked for CS support.

                  Cheers guys

                  Saambo


                  P.S I also had a great coffee at Whistler in a very out of the way cafe....the barista was an Aussie....coincidence perhaps??

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Vancouver coffee. Its bad! Im in CS hell!


                    I was told last weekend that its hard not finding an Aussie on Whistler.

                    Surprising that a ski resort had good coffee, I cannot think of anything grand above the snowline in Oz.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Vancouver coffee. Its bad! Im in CS hell!

                      I have just got back from visiting USA. I agree that there are a lot of Starbucks there. We went to New York and there are at least two on every block, with people waiting out the door to get inside to buy one. I always went into corner shops and I had hot chocolates while I was there, it was safer, the cheesecake was excellent though.

                      The highlight of the trip was visiting my brother who had just got a Silvia and Rocky. I had a great coffee the whole time I was with him. He is very particular on how to make a coffee and did the process meticulously. He spent time teaching me latte art. It was great not having to go three weeks without a decent coffee.

                      Kaz

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