Sunday, November 4, 2012
Half and Half
Having just come back from Seattle where coffee is king and everyone knows the name and life story of his local barista, I acquired the habit of going some mornings for coffee with my sister. At Vita's place I ordered an "Americana" coffee: a "grande" composed of two shots of espresso. (Americans have adapted the Italian names for coffee drinks thanks to Starbucks, a company started in Seattle. )
In my case, one shot of coffee I ordered was decaffeinated and one was real. Here is what happened when I tried the same thing the other day in Nice.
For good coffee, I vote Malongo, a Niçois success story.
I vote for Malongo as the best brand in France, an excellent coffee with a water processed de-caf on offer.
Since the Malongo coffee bar in Nice is right next to the Notre Dame Cathedral , my friend Roge and I decided to stop and have a cuppa.
And it is here that we encountered another example of the famous "can't do" attitude which is cultural difference number 117.
Here is the conversation I had ( in french, of course) with the server .
"Can you bring me a shot of decaf and a shot of real coffee together as one ?"
Server: "Let me understand, he wants a coffee and you want a decaf?"
"No, I want two shots but in the same cup? Half and Half, one decaffeinated and one real coffee. He wants a cappuccino.
(Look of stupification from the server... slow shaking of the head, hand over the mouth. )
"No, it's simple I want two shots but in one cup with some room for cream."
FRench man leaning over from another table: " It's easy . It's done all of the time elsewhere. You simply put two "dossettes" into one cup. "
Server: (With a doubtful look) Well, I will go and ask. Server walks away.
I turn to the stranger and say: Can't one do this in France? What's the problem.? It's possible , right?
French Stranger: " Yes, of course it's possible but you must have a willingness ( bonne volonté)! ( he laughs) The French have difficulty with this. But it is not difficult ...you just have to want to . " ( shrugs and shakes his head.)
Well, our two coffees came according to our order and they were a whopping 9 euros. Roge kindly left her a "tenner".
On the way out the waitress smiled happily like a child who has taken her first step.
Me: " Now you will remember me for next time , right? "
Server: Ah oui, madame.
But still , Malongo is a great coffee.
Posted by Maypay at 2:49 AM