With Starbucks attempting to woo finicky consumers with its new Pike Place Roast, McDonald’s entering the race for your McLatte dollar, Portland’s Stumptown making itself at home here, and new coffee shops cropping up all the time, Seattle’s coffee culture is still as fresh as that first cup. But what does your favorite coffee shop say about you?
If you drink at…
Starbucks: Your friends call you Mr. Predictable, and you don’t take it as an insult. You don’t care who harvested your beans or where they came from, as long they taste the same day in and day out, no matter which Starbucks you toss a stone and hit. And you value a barista who will listen to you change your mind 15 times and still be nice to you. Did I say 2 percent milk? I meant nonfat. And can I get some cinnamon on top of my grande, half-caf, no foam, extra-hot latte?
Caffé D’arte: You’re a perfectionist and you need your morning java to be a reflection of your not-a-hair-out-of-place persona. If the foam isn’t just right, the espresso pulled a second too early, that barista better smack their own hand with that metal stirring spoon, dump out the offending beverage and start again. Bad barista!
Caffe Ladro: You probably couldn’t pick your barista—or your coffee shop companion at the same table—out of a lineup because your head is buried in a book or your laptop. And you certainly don’t mind being called a coffee snob—but just not until you finish this chapter.
Java Bean: You read Seattle Weekly’s “Uptight Seattleite” column every week because it’s just so true. A little piece of your soul died when Ballard’s Sunset Bowl and Denny’s closed. You feel naked without your KEXP messenger bag slung over your shoulder, your horn-rimmed glasses perched on your nose and a steaming cup of Java Bean roast in your hand.
Vivace: You watched the “Soup Nazi” episode of Seinfeld and took careful notes to assist with your coffee ordering. No talking on your cell phone. Don’t dare mention the words “tall,” “venti,” “skinny” or “frappuccino.” Never make direct eye contact. No smiling. And be sure to drop at least a bill in the tip jar—or no coffee for you!
Caffé Vita: You rock your hipster mullet while nonchalantly bobbing your head to the unbearably loud pulsing music at the Cap Hill flagship shop. You don’t mind the ridiculously slow Wi-Fi connection just so long as the local beans keep coming and everyone keeps their voices down. Geez! Don’t they know this is a library—er, coffee shop?!
Caffè Fiorè: You want a coffee shop that feels just like that flannel shirt you’ve had since college, and Fiore happens to have the exact same color scheme of burnt orange and brown. And wait, isn’t that Counting Crows album they’re playing the same one you listened to in college? But, hey, at least the tasty lattes are organic, just like you, our little grunge-era hanger-on.
Uptown Espresso: You like your coffee shop to have a good superlative, and “Home of the Velvet Foam” certainly does the trick. It’s like drinking butter. But if it weren’t for the comfy atmosphere and tons of seating, you might just find yourself heating up a stick of butter in your mug in the office microwave to avoid the morning wait.
Victrola: It looks like you’re staring intently at the report on your laptop screen, but you’re really checking yourself out in the reflection to make sure you’re looking j