Local Starbucks Fights the Ghetto Latte

Now that it’s getting cold outside hot coffee is starting to sound good to me again.  I usually only drink hot drinks in the winter while preferring cold any other time.  I’ve enjoyed iced coffee all summer since its easy to make using a concentrate I get at the local store.

meh_coffeeRemembering I had some money on my Starbucks account I stopped at the location near my office.  It’s been a while since I’ve been in here because the service is well below average.  They seem to dedicate all of their staff activity to the drive-thru and, even today, they were serving 3-4 people in the drive-thru to every one person in the store.

After I ordered my plain coffee & walked over to the condiment bar for a splash of half-and-half.  Wait a minute, the stainless steel thermos is missing!  The guy standing next to me saw what I was looking for and said “you have to ask them for it”.

So back to the pickup counter I go and I waited to get someone’s attention.  The employees were too busy tripping over each other to get the orders out the little window to notice me standing there.  After a few moments I got one of the worker bees attention.  “Cream?” I asked.  She was already reading my mind and grabbed a little paper cup and proceeded to pour out a couple of ounces of the heavy moo juice.   I asked, “do you have one you’d like me to put out on the station”, thinking I would be a nice guy and do them a favor.  “No” she said.  “We keep it back here now so it doesn’t run out as fast”.

Then it hit me.  The Ghetto Latte has gotten so bad they have to ration out the dairy to keep people from cheating the system.  I assure you this is a real thing.  I’ve seen it time and time again where people turn a couple of shots of espresso over ice into one (or in some cases when they ask for an extra cup) two Lattes saving themselves a few dollars in the process.

cheap_coffeeWay to stick it to the man cheap skate.  I’d be willing to bet that’s your idling car parked crooked in the handicapped spot too.  Bonus points if you’re talking on your speaker phone while oblivious to everyones personal space the entire time you’re in the store.

So once again, those who take advantage of things make it inconvenient for others who go with the flow.  Say what you want about Starbucks.  I know it’s over priced and there are better options out there.  In this case it was a choice between office coffee (usually empty), a small Keurig we have in our area (meh, I don’t get the pod thing), or something slightly better.

I’m curious if this practice of keeping the half-and-half behind the counter is a isolated thing at this particular Starbucks or if this is a common practice at other coffee shops too.  Anyone else witness a Ghetto Latte in the making?  I’d love to hear your stories!

Rant – Valet Parking on the North Side

Picture this…  You’re taking your spouse, date, etc. out to a nice dinner in the Northern Indianapolis Suburbs .  When you pull into the parking list you see the Valet Parking sign…  What do you do?

Me?  I drive on by and find a parking spot.  In most cases parking is available right there in front of the restaurant.  I assure you Mr./Ms. restauranteur, I know how to park my car and I’m more than capable of walking the 100 feet to the front door of your place of business.  I don’t need to hide all of my valuables in the glove box and give the valet key to a total stranger you have employed to park my car in the same spot for me…

Now in the case of some crafty establishments (Bonefish for example) they block off 25% of the already too small parking lot and you are all but forced to partake in their elaborate scheme to squeeze a few more gratuity dollars from you.  Don’t get me wrong, I actually LIKE eating at Bonefish, I just think their valet parking service is crap.

Some of the higher end eateries (Peterson’s, Eddie Merlot’s and Sullivan’s) also have this service.  The funny thing is they are surrounded by parking and it takes longer to get your car than it does to just walk to it!

Valet parking at the “Fashion Mall” cracks me up too…

Head to downtown Indy or a city like Chicago where parking is all but non-existent and the Valet concept makes more sense.  I still self-park when I can but have been known to turn my keys over from time to time (especially when the weather is bad (and I tip well for it)).

What’s the appeal of Valet parking on the north side?  I just don’t get it.  Please educate me…