5 Ways to Know Your Coffee Shop Doesn't Suck

Categories: Chow Bella

Cartel Coffee Lab does not suck.
Consider this a shout-out to all the caffeine-fueled, hard-working Americans out there who can't get the day started without a cup of joe. We feel your adrenal-shot addiction and offer up this advice: Life is much too short to drink bad coffee.

How does one make absolute sure they are procuring the good stuff from a cafe of good-standing? Allow us to seize a cup (or twelve) of liquid muse and we shall tell you the five ways to know your coffee shop doesn't suck. Stereotypical though they may be. We find the following to be true.

Prime Roast Coffee
A coffee roaster at work.
Do they roast their own beans?

If the answer is no, get the hell out. We're looking for beans roasted meticulously by an obsessed coffee shop owner who seems to care more about the beans than he does about his customers. If your coffee roaster goes by a single name that sounds foreign in origin (examples: Micha, Raul, Dieter) you're on the right path. Bonus points if they have a permanent scowl and mutter things in a language you don't understand.

An angry barista. It's a good thing.
Are they pretentious?

Yes, we don't like dealing with pretentious people either, but it turns out this is the one sacrifice you must make to enjoy the finest joe. Think about it! Would you want a barista handing you your mid-morning pick-me-up with a side of shiny, happy mannerisms? No, we thank not. If you're Barista gives you a scripted, I've-said-this-a-million-times-in-the-past-hour inquiry as to what flavor of coffee you would like, you're in the wrong place. If your barista looks you over as though you're unworthy to drink rancid, steamed milk, you've hit the jackpot...strange though it sounds.

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