Saturday, 29 June 2013

Good Cafe Guide

I'm not really sure why I needed a copy of the Good Cafe Guide (sic - no accent in the name!), but since the cost was $5 if I bought it with the Age (or should that be, $8 with a copy of the Saturday Age thrown in?), I decided to "go for it" for interest's sake.

I'm still pondering the need for such a guide.  Surely one checks out the local cafés in person?   And does anyone really travel to the other side of the town just to get a coffee at a highly rated coffee shop?

Be that as it may, a number of the local coffee establishments are listed. However, there are at least a couple that I would have expected to find in it but are missing, as to my inexpert eye they are "better" than at least some of those that are listed.  But who am I to assess such matters?

All this, of course, begs the question, what are the criteria for a café to be "good"?    Ambiance seems to be high on this list (being a "gorgeous" venue helps!), as is a menu that has some trendily-named choices (pea fritters with pickled cabbage, anyone?)   Some attention has apparently been be paid to the quality of the coffee served, in that the brand of coffee that each uses is listed (the flavour of the coffee sometimes receives a comment) and some establishments receive a  "Coffee cup award" (1, 2 or 3 "cups") which are said to have been assessed by the publisher's "sharpest coffee palates".   However, the text rarely, if ever, comments on the skill (or lack of it) of the various baristas, so the reasoning behind the assessments made by these "palates" is not immediately obvious.  I can only conclude that there's lots of subjectivity involved!

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