Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Love for the Latte
What can I say? I’m in love with my latte. It greets me in the morning – frothy, tasty, and warm in my hand pushing out the cold, slowly waking me up. This love for the latte – I can’t imagine a day without it. However, I’m guessing like most of you, I wasn’t born a coffee drinker.
I started drinking coffee in my teens – I remember my first cup – my Dad handed it over to me and asked, “Do you want anything in it?” It seemed like a test – so I paused…cream seemed safe. Sugar…that didn’t seem quite right… I drank a few sips black…I held back my pucker face. I stirred in the cream. “Better?” he asked and I nodded. Somehow I knew I had to get through that cup. I was definitely not a “regular” yet.
Fast forward to college – I didn’t know it yet, but I was about to experience the holy grail of coffee shops – Water Street Coffee Joint. The original location – across the street from Bell’s Brewery in Kalamazoo is what all coffee shops should aspire to be. Quirky and quaint in a tiny, old converted gas station near the train tracks, the original building was so small, 2-3 people could barely stand in line to order at the same time. The sunshine logo in yellow and orange with the cobalt blue background and mug were perfect (still is). We were always crammed in and sometimes you could not find a seat – but you waited anyway. Their mocha was the stuff Folgers coffee dreams of being when it grows up and starts wearing makeup and dressing fancy. The fresh cream (lightly flavored with vanilla) alone was enough to make you want suck down that heart racing, rich chocolately dream drink. Jerry did not drink coffee UNTIL he had a Water Street Mocha. He was converted – right then and there.
True story – we went to Chicago during those years and went to Starbuck’s for the first time. We both ordered mochas – mistake number one. What we didn’t know then that we know now is that a Starbuck’s mocha in my opinion is their worst latte drink. We didn’t finish our drinks – it tasted like –*gasp* the fast food of coffee!
Fast forward to now – I’ve been converted to Starbucks. Maybe I have gone backwards on the coffee snob continuum by admitting this fact, but it is all about the love of the latte. Give me sugar free vanilla and breve with that kickin espresso and that first sip is divine – every time. We have duplicated it on our home machine and I have my cobalt blue mug and saucer where I sit and pine away…remembering the days at Water Street. If we lived closer, I would be there…
Enjoy your coffee today, friends.

No comments: