Why I prefer my local coffee shop to Starbucks.

I like Starbucks coffee.  I’ve developed a taste for its bold flavor and the consistency of taste that is found at every location.  I also like the Starbucks cafe environment.  What I don’t like about Starbucks is the wait for its coffee.  When I go to Starbucks I am most often in the market for just plain ole coffee.  What I often find  is a line of people in front of me who are ordering lattes, cappuccinos, Frappuccinos (R) and all sorts of specialty drinks.  So I wait and wait and wait while the frazzled, smiling barista scrambles to blend, mix and pour a variety of coffee creations for customers who are willing to pay $3.50 and up for a cup.  I just want a cup of joe.

Now Starbucks is telling its baristas to slow down, according to a recent article in the Wall Street Journal.  What?  Now I get to wait even longer?  And Starbucks is looking into serving wine and beer after 4:00 p.m. at certain locations.  That strategy might work in some locations, but I suspect that it is going to chip away at the Starbucks brand.

So what do I, the everyday coffee consumer do?  It’s simple.  I go to Broad Street Baking Company and Cafe or Cups, my local coffee shops.  Broad Street is a hip eating and meeting place in Jackson, Mississippi that is an excellent alternative to Starbucks.  There, instead of waiting in line for a cup of coffee I can just throw a couple of dollars in a basket beside a selection of four blends of coffee and get my own coffee.  It’s called the honor system.  And the coffee isn’t bad either.  And then there is Cups, a collection of local coffee shops featuring art from local artists on its walls and a person behind the counter who seems to not take forever to create those coffee concoctions.

I’m not swearing off Starbucks.  Especially when I travel.  But in my home town, you’ll find me and my java at my local coffee shop.

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