Just before Christmas last year, I wrote the following email to Starbucks,
I am not a snob. I am just a normal person who has been drinking coffee for
thirty years or so. The best coffee is that which I make for myself at home
from fresh ground “medium roast” beans, using boiled water poured through a
paper filter holder that sits above my mug. I add about a teaspoon of
sugar, two teaspsoons of cream.
I don’t often drink Starbucks coffee, because I don’t subscribe to the
“burn the hell out of it, because burnt is better” mantra of bean roasting.
Even the lighter roasts tend to be offensive (and cause my gallbladder to
release crazy amounts of bile in short order – look that up if you don’t
know where it’s going), so I just stay away. Similarly, I don’t drink the
swill they now sell at Tim Hortons either.
Now you have some context for what I am about to write…
Yesterday my wife returned home with a black “blonde roast” coffee from
Starbucks for me, as she happened to be in Chapters and she felt like doing
something nice for me. I thanked her, added a bit of cream and sugar, and
mapped out the fastest routes to the washroom from where I sat down. I put
the plastic lidded paper cup to my lips and pulled a draught through the
drinking hole while my mouth instantly recoiled in a flurry of both horror
and disgust. The vile, earthy, swill was reminiscent of wet soil mixed with
tree bark and a hint of vommit. Instinctively my mouth swallowed, almost as
if to reassure me that it was still my friend, despite the unpleasantness it
was now subjecting me to. I put the cup down, dumbfounded, and exclaimed,
“that was disgusting!”. I then tested the remainder of the cup as a kitchen
A question remains on my mind after that experience, “were there even any
coffee beans used in the creation of that liquid?”, because it honestly did
not taste like coffee at all. Even stale instant coffee, which I
affectionately refer to as, “liquid brown”, tastes more like coffee than
that cup of Starbucks “Blonde Roast”.
This was an unusual and unpleasant experience.
R. Bassett Jr.
They were kind enough to reply, offering me a gift card to make up for the unfortunate experience. Today that gift card arrived!
Hope you enjoyed this letter. I shared it with my wife and friend and they both found it entertaining, so I thought I would share it here too. I get kick out of slinging words… which reminds me, I still have to write that letter to Reid’s Dairy about their eggnog! 🙂