On a flight to Boston, my husband and I decided to grab some coffee and a snack in Harvard Square. I knew just the place, Crema Cafe. I stumbled upon it when I was in Boston last. This place serves George Howell Coffee. I was so looking forward to a wonderful cup of coffee before we officially began our day in New England. Well, we may have gotten great coffee but our experience there was disappointing thanks to the woman who took our order and rang us up. She clearly did not want to be there. She was so focused on giving us attitude and essentially trying not to do her job that she didn’t charge us for the pound of beans I explicitly showed her so she in fact wouldn’t miss it. Well she did. Before we even took a sip of our drinks, we already had a bad taste in our mouths.
Why do some cafes still think it’s acceptable and even cool to provide bad service and attitude? I’m willing to pay a premium for great coffee but like paying a premium for a superb meal at a restaurant, part of what I’m paying for is the service that delivers it. When service is bad and the cafe employee is flat out rude, I’m no longer willing to give the place more business. Thankfully, especially in most major U.S. cities, the number of cafes that provide amazing coffee along with good service is growing. (Over the next few months I’ll share examples of such places.) And even if I’m in an area where my options are very limited, I’d rather wait until I return home to have a great cup of coffee — I usually drink Blue Bottle — than give someone money for bad service.