Look what I came across as this morning….a Jimmy Choo coffee cup sleeve! The ultimate accessory for a fashionista who likes her coffee on-the-go. I think this should be a fashion accessory for just about anyone, even tea-drinkers. This Jimmy Choo Rika croc-effect leather coffee cup sleeve comes in 3 colours: Taupe, black and dark-brown leather. And it will set you back $125. But who said fashion was about practicality? This will make your coffee look good, no matter what
I haven’t posted in a while. I was away. In Qatar. Yes, the same Qatar that’s in the Persian Gulf where it gets to 54 degrees in June-July. I went there and baked. With my mom-in-law. I mean I actually did bake, 2 cakes in fact, which I will write about soon.
I have finally gotten my camera and my computer back in sync, and I have unpacked and settled back into rainy windy Mumbai so I can finally start posting regularly.
I am a sucker for Starbucks coffee. I know, that sounds pathetic. Purists will say that Starbucks coffee isn’t the real deal; Balinese kopi luwak is the way to go. But I still run to a Starbucks every time I’m abroad like my behind is on fire. Coffee breaks are essential to my retail experience. At home it’s Costa Coffee or Barista or The Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf or whatever else is around at the mall. If I’m abroad, it must be Starbucks. Yes, I’m a sad, capitalist mall piranha who needs to shop for clotheshoesbagsbookscrockery. Ok I have to start a new paragraph because this one is making me appear sadder with each word I type.
Now the coffee at Starbucks is great- it may not be get your panties in a twist kinda great; but still pretty darn good. It’s not like we get bad phancy coffee in India: the Café Frappe at Café Coffee Day is most agreeable; the iced coffees at Gloria Jeans’s are rich and frothy; and the flavoured lattes and café mochas at Costa and The Coffee Bean are lovely. But I still value Starbucks above all of them. I always thought I felt that way because we don’t have the chain in India, but I recently realised I was wrong.
I walked into Starbucks at Doha’s City Centre mall and ordered a mocha Frappuccino for myself and a Caffe Mocha for my mother in law. And as I sat there drinking my iced coffee, which tasted as good as any mocha iced coffee back home, I wondered: what was it about Starbucks? What magic did the white and green mermaid logo have, that made me walk past the sale at Nine West and head straight towards the coffee counter? Was it because they are generous with the whipped cream? Or because they had gargantuan sizes? Or simply becuase they were the first ones to make drinking ridiculously priced coffee chic? I sipped and slurped and wondered and crunched on an ice cube.
And then dear coffee lovers, it hit me: as I looked down into my mocha flavoured glacial goodness, it finally hit me. It was the straw. That fat, green, sturdy Starbucks straw. The straw was like Starbucks mug sizes: bigger and better. One gentle sip and you got everything: the coffee, the ice, the whipped cream, the chocolate syrup. It wasn’t like the straws at Barista and Cafe Coffee Day which were about as thin as cling wrap and as narrow as a chopstick. If those straws managed to survive the pressure of your lips, you still had to pull so hard, so hard that the veins on your temples tightened, your eyes bulged and you got a migraine.
And by the time you’ve managed to find a rhythm with your straw, your coffee’s no longer cold, your ice has melted and you’re exhausted.
With the Blessed Green Straw, it’s just so easy…
PS I shouldn’t have stared at that green straw for so long because my 3-month-old son was on my lap and he kicked the cup as I reached for it and the rest of my Mocha Frapp wound up on the floor. (Phew!) Hence, the borrowed Frappuccino picture!
I guess it’s one of those eternal debates- Delhi or Bombay? Well-done or medium-rare? The Book or The Movie Adaptation? And, the morning drink – Tea or Coffee? It’s something that just happens to you- I think that the drink chooses you, for whatever reason, and not the other way around. I’m a coffee drinker. It’s a flavour and aroma I grew up with, since my parents prefer coffee.
I’ve had my share of bean-versus-leaf battles with family and friends, which was mostly me whining about why the other person couldn’t just drink coffee like a normal person. Coffee was so much easier; instant coffee+water+milk. Done. With tea, there was brewing-straining-serving-blah.
But I had been fooling myself with instant coffee at home. The past few months I’ve been in Kerala with my parents, and have discovered the joys of a French press. It’s sooooooo much nicer than instant coffee! Seriously, Deepika Padukone and Karan Johar can try to switch on the best in themselves with Nescafe, but it’s just coffee-bean pee compared to brewing coffee in a press. I don’t have a press in Bombay, and had been making do with various forms and flavours of instant coffee. Now, I’m addicted to the French press. I love using it. It makes me feel all phancy, (which is just a fancier way of saying fancy) and vaguely European.
I’m currently using a coarse coffee blend called Mr Bean, from Tata Coffee, and we have an awesome Bodum press to make it in. It takes a little longer, but once you’re done, the decoction is lovely- strong and aromatic- and it doesn’t have that faint cardboard aftertaste.
AND the other reason I am so excited about coffee-making and am writing this post, is because, the other day, I discovered, in a remote corner of the kitchen, a coffee whipper! Ok, so it’s actually called a milk frother, and it’s so much fun to use! It makes your coffee so nice and frothy and professional-looking and you can impress people when they come over for dinner. Oh. And it makes this lovely whirring noise. The sound is the kitchen-appliance equivalent of “whopeeee!!” (The expression, not the cushion.)
Bodum has some lovely sleek products which you must check out here if you love coffee.
PS Here’s the song which inspired the title of this post- Java Jive- it’s a cover of the Ink Spots’ original.