Your baristas are a delicate breed of human -- they are perfectionists when it comes to their craft and sensitive when it comes to social aptitude. Much like bartenders, they are stuck dealing with people at their worst -- un-caffeinated, early in the morning and grumpy.
If you get the feeling that your barista hates you, relax -- they might be a bit grumpy, too, but it's not going to affect the quality of your drink. You might also want to look inward a little -- a lot of the things on this list aren't much more complex than simple, social rules.
Written collaboratively by a group of several Denver-based baristas.
1. Stop being a mouth-breather Just because your drink will be made by someone else doesn't mean you can treat those of us at the register like a vending machine. We're the ones in charge of your money and getting your drink made. Get off your phone, have your drink order ready when you get to us and, for god's sake, don't stare at the menu while breathing out of your mouth.
2. Your tips help pay our rent We understand there are going to be some days where you can't tip, or even circumstances where you don't think you should. However, if you're not going to tip for your thirteen-step, elaborate drink order, consider making it at home.
3. We open when we open We have hours posted on the door. Those hours are the times we are open. We're really damn busy in the morning getting the shop clean, the coffee made and setting the place up to receive you. Peering in the window or knocking on the door before we're open isn't going to get you inside any quicker.
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4. Say it right If you're getting a drink from anywhere except Starbucks, they're not called "grande" or "venti." Just order a small, medium or large. Since we're on the topic of Starbucks, they are the only place on the planet that has what you refer to as a "caramel macchiato" -- anywhere else, you'll get a couple shots of espresso with some caramel and a dollop of foam. While we're at it, there is no "X" in espresso.
5. Remember your own order We do our best to keep an eye on what drinks are coming up and who they're for, but since a different person is taking your order from the person making the drink, it can get a little complicated sometimes. Pay attention while you're waiting and take the right one after we make it. If you don't, you're putting three people out -- yourself for having the wrong drink, the person whose drink you stole, and the barista who will probably have to make two drinks again.