Is size really that important?

If you’ve kept up with my posts on this blog, you’ll have the impression that I’m more of a business owner who bought a cafe, not a hardcore coffee lover who bought a cafe.  I’ve been self-employed since I was 20, and it’s because of my business background that a lot of my decisions lean towards what makes better economic sense, and what keeps our customers happy, rather than we can’t do something because “that’s not the way it’s done”.

In my younger years, I worked for at a church, as a piano player/pipe organist.  At the beginning of each service, you would play a hymn or three while people walked in and sat down, and try to finish when the minister was ready to start.  Not a hard concept really.

I remember a visiting organist, who was very well qualified, and very set in his ways.  He would make the minister wait until he’d finished the piece he was playing, even if he had another five minutes to go. Why? Because it was not the right thing to finish a classical piece at any other part than the end.  Would any of the congregation have noticed? Not at all.  Was he achieving anything by being so stubborn? Just annoying the powers that be, and guaranteeing he wouldn’t be asked back again.

In my mind, the above illustrates that there needs to be flexibility and trying to always be technically right and proper often comes to one’s detriment.

You too can love mondays #coffee #latteart #caffeine #pretty #thanksadam

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Back to coffees, and I’ve already covered off the upgrade we made to the coffee cups, and why we still offer trim milk when some are dropping it.  What I’m hoping to clarify with this post is I don’t think it matters what size a person’s coffee is, as long as they understand what they are getting.

The passionate coffee lovers will dictate that a flat white must be in a 6oz cup to best show the taste and flavour notes of the coffee shot.  Anything from Starbucks in a hugemongous cup is a coffee sin, and those who buy them aren’t true coffee people and should be stoned outside the gates of the city.  Give me a break.

Our smallest cup is an 8oz, because this matches our smallest takeaway and customers don’t feel ripped off getting a small coffee.  If we used 6oz, that’s fine for the dine-in tulip cups, but it makes for a very small takeaway coffee, which we had negative feedback on when we tried it.  Does the customer feel like they are getting good value for money with that size cup, even if it’s cheaper because it’s smaller? Nope.

I can sum up my opinion on all this very succinctly: if you’re happy to pay for it, we’ll make your coffee however you like it in whatever size you want.  My emphasis would be on however you like it.

You do need to note that if you are tired and want the coffee to give you drive, you need more shots (not too many though) not more milk.  We often get customers ask for a super large coffee because they are tired, which isn’t right.  You are just drinking more milk, not getting more coffee.  I’d also recommend getting a triple shot, and no more.  If you aren’t used to that much coffee regularly, you will be spending a lot of time in the bathrooms.

You work too hard for your money and life’s too short to be dictated to by others as to what you like.  If you want a 16oz quarter strength vanilla latte with four sweeteners, my staff will make it for you.  Why? Because you’re the customer and we should be doing whatever we can to make your experience with us the best.  That’s just good hospitality. Simple.


(Apologies for the delays in posting, it’s been a busy few months.  I’ve got more time now so am hoping to post more regularly from now…)