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My Newest Drug

09/03/07

Permalink 12:22:22 am, by millercommamatt, 502 words   English (US)
Categories: Fiji

My Newest Drug

Over the past few months, I've acquired a new addiction: Starbucks's Caffè Lattes. I'm a fan of coffee, but I've always wanted something just a little different out of it. Coffee is thin and slightly bitter. While cream and sugar go a long way to hide the aspects of coffee and I don't like while leaving the wonderful aroma and bold earthen flavors, it's a rare cup of coffee that satisfies me completely. That's not to say I wasn't a fan, but I knew that there was room for improvement.

A while back, I don't remember when exactly, I ordered a caffè latte on a whim while in Starbucks with my mom. I was surprised at how much I enjoyed it. Caffè Lattes are a combination of espresso and steamed milk. Good espresso is rich and shouldn't taste burnt or bitter. The steamed milk provides a good creamy body and just enough natural sweetness that no additives are required to please my pallet. It's everything I've always wanted a cup of coffee to be.

Starbucks manages to trigger a wave of corporate dislike in many people. Some people feel that a cup of coffee shouldn't cost more than a dollar. I know Starbucks has it's reasons and motivations for pricing the way it does. I'll be the first to say that I'd like to pay less to feed my caffeine addiction and I would like to support local coffee shops who have to work very hard to stay in business in a very competitive market. However, I have yet to find a coffee shop near me that can make better espresso than Starbucks. The espresso from everywhere else I've tried tastes burnt and bitter. So, that means that I pay $3.70-ish for my lattes at the local Starbucks. Fortunately, my local Starbucks has very friendly and competent staff and always makes me happy.

This evening I tried something a little different than my usual Starbucks order. Instead of getting a Venti Caffè Latte, I got a Venti Caffè Breve. It's just like a latte, but made with steamed half-and-half instead of steamed milk. I was looking for a latte that was even creamier. I wasn't disappointed. However, a caffè breve is far more filling than a latte. I finished about half of my breve this evening and that was with a dedicated effort. I think I'll stick with my normal latte in the future. The breve was just too much. Nevertheless, if you're looking for a really filling hot beverage, the breve might just be the thing for you. Just be warned that it's not for calorie counters. I hear that they will make a similar beverage with steamed heavy whipping cream that weights in at 1800 calories for a Venti size. I'm willing to bet money that the resulting drink is spreadable and would taste good on toast.

So, the moral of the story is that I'm now addicted to Starbucks. I now know exactly why their logo has the mythical siren.

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