Monday, September 15, 2008

#7 Americanos from Stumptown

If you ever want to give a hipster a heart attack, ask them if they want to go to Starbucks and get a Frappuccino. If you really want to see them freak out, buy them four Frappuccino's and deliver it to them in one of those to-go carriers that they give out at Starbucks.

The thing is that to be underground you have to be extremely particular about several things. Coffee is definitely one of those. Other things that make the list are music, vegan restaurants, bike shops, and clothing stores. We call these the "Big Five."

Coffee is like wine for people who are underground. You'll often hear them describing the flavor, body, chemistry, and roasting characteristics of a good brew. Don't be intimidated, just nod and pretend you know what they're talking about. A simple way to jump into the conversation is by asking something simple like, "so when exactly was this roasted, it smells fresh." This will usually open up the conversation and allow the person to continue talking for several more minutes. The ask, "Where are these beans from? Sumatra? Carmo de Minas? Perhaps the Loma Del Rio region of Costa Rica?" You'll sound so underground you'll make your friends spit coffee out of there noses.

Its not uncommon to spend $3 to $4 on a good cup of coffee when you're underground. If the vintage t-shirt you're wearing cost you about the same then you know you're doing something right. A typical drink that you'll want to order is the Americano. This drink is great because there's no bullshit about it. Its just espresso and water. And you'll notice that even though it sounds French or Italian, its not. Its the word American with an "O" at the end. The "O" stands for "Oh man, you're underground."

Two of my favorite places to go for a good cup in downtown Portland are Stumptown Coffee Roasters, and Half & Half. If you live in NE, and I know some of you do, Random Order Coffeehouse on 18th and Alberta is great. They have muffins with bacon in them, and that's pretty badass because most of the people who go in there are vegans.


Anonymous said...

I heart Stumptown coffee

Anonymous said...

Umm, I work at Random order and I can tell you that most of the people that go in there are definitely not vegan and probably no one who works there is. Oh, and as far as I can tell bacon might be the next hipster trend.

Pretty Underground said...

Nice, a report from the front lines. I agree on the bacon front. for a while being a vegetarian/vegan was underground, and now that vegetables became mainstream bacon will be making its comeback.

Chic Noir said...

Everything I know about coffe I learned while working at starbucks.
YOu have a really nice blog btw.