Listen Up You Starbuckaroos and Get Wise To Barista Lingo


Did diner cooks in the old days really call for “Adam and Eve on a raft— wreck ‘em!” when they meant scrambled eggs on toast? Or was that some colorful newspaperman elaborating on reality back in the days when good copy and local color trumped accuracy? We don’t know, and in the end history is whatever the guy who wrote it down says it was, so Ben Schott’s piece in the New York Times about barista slang will be the truth from here on. A number of Chicago places figured in his research; we were most amused by the very bean-serious Asado Coffee calling people who ask for flavored coffees with lots of stuff on them “Starbuckaroos,” Wormhole staff calling out a flirtatious customer by saying “We’ve got a fresh pot,” which you could totally imagine Ann Sheridan saying about James Cagney in a 1930s movie, and Caffé Streets calling a skim milk latte with sugar-free vanilla syrup a “Sorority Special.” As for the rest of the country, we pretty much snorted our latte through our nose at Blue Bottle’s term “P.B.M.” to refer to the type of coffee bar that has lame pastries… it stands for “Perfunctory Bran Muffin.” Oh yeah, we’ve been to that place. Plenty of times. [NYT]