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Coffee Time Chat

there is not much that a basic office coffee-drinker wants. We do not hanker for brews and blends. All we want is a nice cup of caffiene in a presentably format, which suits our palates.
There is a subtle but remarkable difference between coffee that can be drunk and coffee that cannot be touched.
All we want is a coffee that can be touched, daily, on a monthly, if not yearly basis. I dont know why it is so difficult. I make almost the same brew everyday at home, and still enjoy it. year after year after year.

The things that go into instant coffee the world over remain the same. The coffee maker in the hotel rooms world over are a proof of that. You need water, a little coffee (from an off-the-counter jar), sugar and a little milk ( the last two being preferential). Ingredients for wonderful, rejuvinating, coffee. A cup that can last you for hours.

Seemingly, I am wrong. My tastebuds say so. Over and over again. All over India I have not managed to find palatable coffee except after specific instructions, even at a coffee shop known for coffee.

There is this maniacal urge of north and west Indian coffee makers to add oodles of milk and sugar and enough coffee to render it the colour of wheat husk. I had hoped that South India with its penchant for strong Filter Coffee would fare me better, but unfortunately thats not what I got in Hyderabad, in 5 places out of 6. In the 6th they just provided cold drinks - diet at that (which i personally hate. artificial sweeteners ruin my palate for hours). I got the same milky sugary brew. (The one time I got a decent brew, I was unable to drink it, merci my cold)

The Barista near my house is known for its coffee - though standard, but at least standard, coffee. I was totally disapointed yesterday by the lack of coffee in it. Even the waiter was guilt ridden when I sent back my cup to be fortified with more coffee, and lesser milk. Or water. Or whatever that was.

Coming back to office. Initially here we had the nice system where the pantry boy made a cup for you in the microwave. If he wasnt there, you made it for yourself.
however, apparently the load on the pantryboys increased. So, they isntalled a machine. So bad, that it increased the caffience consumption of the average person. I had two cups of great coffee in the whole day, but with the machine stuff, I needed one every few hours at least. Then the pantry boy designed a complicated but master art of creating a normal coffee out of a wicked combination of the foul extracts emanating from the machine.
unfortunately, I cannot expect the same concoction everytime it seems. The pantry boy dulls, and depending on his mood fouls up on the created art, refusing to perfect it to six sigma levels. No matter how I coax and praise him.
I would be happy to have milk, water, sugar and coffee at my disposal to make my particular manna as I want it, and leave my fellow colleague at peace to make his own. But companies seem to conspire against that.
I wonder, what is so expensive about a simple 5 rupee cupfull that can cause Admin departments to try cut budgets? What is so irking about a cup of coffee revitalising and invigorating workers from doing some quality work versus incoherent shit, that top management agrees to these cuts, while asking for 'a little special' concoction for themselves. What is so out of balance about a cup fully consumed even 3 times a day vs. a full cup of the brew thrown away untouched the same number of times? Hey! Employees are even ready to pay for a decent cuppa!

I wonder how bad can it get if the guest in your meeting asks for a cold drink after trying two varieties of your coffee. Some say the presence of toilet paper shows how well the company is doing (Dilbert). I say you can judge simply by the coffee served to you.

Exactly how I dont yet know, because as far as I can see, its always pathetic.

PS - no Rexzilla, I will not comment on the machine provided by your company. Its plain bribery to make employees stick.

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( 9 comments — Leave a comment )
16th Jul, 2007 14:24 (UTC)
Pretty sad..
It's so true of desi management to think of improving the balance sheet by cutting costs rather than growing the business.
So your top mgmt get their cuppa from elsewhere eh? >.<

Looks like the only way out for you is to get one of those slinky steel flasks and carry your own homemade supply! Though you might have to fight off your colleagues once they get the aroma of the real stuff.
17th Jul, 2007 05:47 (UTC)
Re: Pretty sad..
Not really elsewhere, but yeah, they ask for an 'extra touch' by adding real milk or something.
I used to carry my own in the second co in Ahd, its a chore to carry it here, considering i travel by bus and will need to balance it in my hand along with the purse and umbrella!
but im sorely tempted everyday.
17th Jul, 2007 05:50 (UTC)
Re: Pretty sad..
Sounds a lot like Winston in 1984...when he gets to taste real whisky instead of 'victory gin' or real coffee instead of wat passes for it there.

(Great now i can visualize the basilisk visage of Ajit Prasad :( )
17th Jul, 2007 09:41 (UTC)
Re: Pretty sad..
He hE...i like the comparison with Victory Gin. It is indeed like that!
17th Jul, 2007 11:30 (UTC)
evil eye
someone cast an evil eye on the coffee machines here, they used to be so decent and one was even good, now all of them serve mud with a ton of sugar. They should add coffee percolators in the list of emoluments from now on, at least we get to make our own.quickly..
18th Jul, 2007 06:54 (UTC)
has been made since my last comment, i have managed to track down the coffee company that has installed the machines here, and have personally supervised the blend of coffee in these machines, and am glad to report that the situation has improved considerably. My colleagues are delighted at my intervention and i am what can be modestly termed. 'Quite the hero' at the moment :)
18th Jul, 2007 07:20 (UTC)
Re: Progress
Congratulations are in order then. Which blessed company is this I wonder ;)
18th Jul, 2007 10:49 (UTC)
Well, atleast my org has kept the "raw materials" separate - hot water, hot milk, sugar, tea bags, bournvita, instant coffee (so what if its not nescafe classic)? :)So the least u need to carry is a sachet of your favourite brand of coffee (or health drink)
They tried to do a pilot run for installing a vending machine in bangalore, but i guess the feedback wasnt that good bec they havent been brought in yet.
Chalo, Abhi tak to theek hi hai...
18th Jul, 2007 11:31 (UTC)
Re: JM..
Cool, not bad.
and even better that u can access the site now :D
( 9 comments — Leave a comment )

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