The Most Obscure Coffees You Make As A Barista – A Little Rant

Every barista knows that person. You know the one. The half-skinny-half-full milk person. The latte with 12 sugars person. The double shot latte with a scoop of ice cream and chocolate sprinkles person.

Yes, we know them too well and they are the bane of our coffee-making day. They get us out of rhythm and always come at the most inconvenient time. But the customer is always right, right?

I say no.

A good coffee takes time to make. By the time you steam your milk, pull the shot and plate up your drink it takes at least a good minute. So I’m sorry my fellow customer when you come in during the morning rush I cannot help you.

Yes, you the body builder that comes in and orders his latte with 6 shots. I say no. The woman who likes her hot chocolate burnt to a crisp. I cannot help. And you the man that asks for a soy chai latte with honey and milk exactly 75 degrees but not “too much froth” – I just don’t like you.

Don’t get me wrong I’m happy to make a special request when I have the time. But when you’re getting through 300+ coffee dockets a day with multiple orders on them it’s just not practical.

If you want to make good coffee consistently and efficiently obscure coffee orders can really put a spanner in works. Not to mention it throws the whole system off track and creates a longer queue.

Alas, not all of us can have this luxury to say no. We bite the bullet, do the time and make the coffee regardless. This is the life the barista and there are annoyances in every job. However it’s always good to have a little rant and get your frustrations off your chest.

So, what’s the most obscure coffee you’ve ever made at work? Tell us below.

  • I had a health conscious customer who liked;

    Large skinny hot chocolate (not too much chocolate!) with 6 sugars and 40 degree milk.

    The hell is that?!

  • Vanilla malt coffee with 1/3 oat milk and 2/3 soy milk.

  • I've had people bring their own milk and coffee in before…still costs the same lol

  • Non-fat, sugar-free vanilla latte, no foam, extra hot, decaf.

    Or…. an iced white mocha americano

    Anything "extra-hot" I mean, seriously? One guy wanted it exactly 190 degrees. Um… can your tongue measure temperature???

  • Long Macchiato – in a mug!!! After explaining its not really a long macchiato if its in a mug (politely of course 🙂 ) 'But thats how we like them'… 3 shots in a mug, topped up 3/4. Not a problem. Then returned to me because they wanted them topped up all the way. Basically a flat white in a mug with an extra shot, anyone would think I actually knew what I was talking about by this point – but still I was the complete imbecile

  • Bonnie Grimm

    I had a regular who wanted a 12 oz skim milk latte with two splenda, double blended. She wanted us to make the drink, put it in a blender, pour it out and run it through again. And of course she’d come in with a group of equally picky friends. I just could never understand where people come up with stuff like that.

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