Shotty Judgment?

Deceptively beautiful...
Deceptively beautiful…

It takes a lot to change a mind. First impressions really stick, like a tongue to ice. Or like glitter to everything. I think this is generally a bad thing – if you have a good first impression of someone or something, you become blinded to any flaws or wrongdoings. If you have a bad first impression, any good is dismissed or invisible. Either way, you miss out on something worth knowing. Damn human nature.

I’ve been trying so hard the past couple of weeks to fight this, but to no avail. Prior to ever trying a latte from Flour Bakery + Café, I’d been warned that they weren’t very good. This may have been the nail in the coffin, though I like to think I really suspended my judgment throughout my trials. My first latte from Flour was the large size, because I was desperate for caffeine. To my dismay, I found myself nodding off at my desk after downing the entire thing. I hadn’t enjoyed it, but assumed it was a fluke – maybe the person who made it wasn’t the best barista in the café. That’s fine, I’ll give it another shot.

In fact, I gave it a double shot. I ordered a small double because I thought that by increasing the ratio of espresso to milk, I would finally get the true effect and flavor of the coffee. But again, I was disappointed with the results. I did find the drink more palatable this time, but could the delectable ginger molasses cookie I had at the same time have affected my judgment? Definitely. I decided to try one more time.

Today, I had a regular small latte, no extra shot, no cookie. I wasn’t as tired as the last 2 times, so I expected the caffeine would have a better chance to impact my energy level. I watched as the bandana’d girl tamped the espresso in the portafilter, twisted it into place, and flipped the switch. My view to the milk steaming was blocked, unfortunately. Several minutes later, my name was called, I scooped up my cup, and I took the first sip.

Unimpressed again. I took a couple more sips, but alas, I had to accept the truth…

I don’t like it.

To me, there’s really nothing worth noting; it’s quite a bland, middle-of-the-road flavor, no matter how many shots I had. While the foam is acceptable, the milk somehow lacks the fullness I enjoy. But I think my real issue is how glaringly disparate in quality and flavor the latte and food offerings are. Sure, Flour’s creator and owner is a renowned culinary goddess (check her out), so perhaps my expectations of the coffee were too high. But I don’t think so. Everything else about Flour is amazing. The sandwiches, the quiche, the pastries, even the tea is delicious. But I cannot get into the latte, and I think there’s definitely room for improvement.

My rating: 4. I don’t think I’ll be giving Flour any more chances on the coffee front, but I have a very, very good impression of their food, so I’ll be trying as many of their menu items as I can. Sorry I won’t be able to tell you if the freshly made pizza is actually good or not… damn human nature.

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