Excellent service, just not my cup of coffee

I’m one to start my day with the rich aroma of freshly brewed coffee -sometimes even taking pleasure in grinding whole bean- which when at home, is all up to me. Therefore, it’s not surprising that when on vacation, my day must begin with the perfect cup o’java as well.

starbucks.gifFirst on my list this past Tuesday morning was to get that cup of coffee, and so, the hunt was on for the closest Starbucks location. However, as fate would have it, out of a group of 11, I was the only one craving a java fix. My morning indulgence had suddenly been dropped to third or fourth place in terms of group priority (or so I thought). We had all awoken late, and enjoyed brunch at 10:45AM, then headed out to start our day.

Our group heads on to Celebration, FL, and first stop is to check out Real Estate. Personally, I’m not shopping for a new home, but my brother-in-law would love to make some property investments here in Orlando, and so our direction shifts toward houses with signs stating “Home Available”. The hunt for the perfect home is on. We take down numbers, call several real estate agents, make a few international calls, and speak to the agents some more. How many rooms, what’s the square footage, how about the living area, tell me about the amenities, etc. Happy with several opportunities, my brother-in-law walks into the his agency of choice, to further talk details. My middle-man job is done, and I’m pleased with having helped with what little real estate knowledge I retained from my studies. Celebration is definitely a great investment if you have the means, it’s definitely all about “location, location, location”, and the beauty and comforts that this small city provides.

However, as we head out to the car, I’m very aware that of that rumbling in my tummy, as I’m yet to satisfy my coffee craving. I decide to take a walk around the block, and head down to the closest lake area, when lo and behold, I spot Barnie’s Coffee. It’s like heaven has opened it’s gates and shined on me it’s light and angelic tunes. No, I’m not exaggerating or being overly dramatic, as by the time I shot this picture of the coffee shop, it is now about 3:30PM and I believe I’ve waited long enough. I walk in, and instantly my blood starts to tingle. I could already savor the warm, smooth taste of coffee and chocolate mingling together in a tall cup of White Chocolate Mocha, prepared with Soy, please. Ahh, the anticipation.

Gee, was I wrong. The warmth of the cup between my hands was exactly what I imagined, but upon carefully sipping the hot drink, my blissful expression turned into a grimace in utter shock. That was NOT my cup of coffee. I simply didn’t like the taste. With a dampened spirit, I proceeded back to the counter, and told the young man that the coffee didn’t meet my taste, that I’d like to try a Hot Soy Chai Tea instead. I mean, you can never go wrong with Chai. Gracefully, the young man agreed, and immediately prepared my Chai. He hands it over, and I sport a huge smile on my face and head outdoors to enjoy my Chai on one of their tables.

After my first sip, I start to muse in disbelief. Could it be their brand of soy? This tastes nothing like what hot, spicy Chai should taste like. I make up my mind that I’ll just finish the drink and go about my day, because it’s kind of nippy outside and I can certainly appreciate the comfort of a warm drink. Uh, yeah. That line of thought lasted about 10 seconds. You guessed it, I walked up to the counter again, and this time a young lady helps me. I mention that this drink isn’t to my liking either, and she asks “What do you like?” I sigh, and think to myself “I like anything and everything Starbucks, but you don’t seem to have that on your menu”. I looked up at the menu, and chose on the very safe side, asking for a Cookies-n-Cream Freezer. If I couldn’t get something to my satisfaction, then at least my children would enjoy a Frappuccino style drink. It was a hit! This Freezer became a rave my kids and my in-laws thoroughly enjoyed.

I’m pretty sure I won’t be shopping at another Barnie’s again, but they do get 5-stars in service excellence. Not one sour face at my endless request for the staff to change my drink not once, but twice. Sorry Barnie’s, you’re just not my cup of coffee.

2 Comments so far

  1. AnnMarie (unregistered) on January 4th, 2005 @ 1:21 pm

    You know, my husband is a coffee fiend too (except it has to be iced) and he has tried Barnies in the mall several times and has never been happy with their coffee. I am not sure if he’s tried Starbucks though (he’s from up North, where it’s all Dunkin Donuts all the time).

  2. zee (unregistered) on January 4th, 2005 @ 3:02 pm

    AnnMarie, I’ll take Dunkin Donuts over Barnie’s any day. And speaking about coffee, I’m out to get some. :o)

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