I got quite excited seeing a new eatery come up in our neighborhood and what attracted me most was the last items on the menu which read “best coffee and best tea”. Being a lover of coffee, I headed straight to this little joint the very first day of its opening expecting to be its first customer and to be served the best cup of coffee.
Let me tell you how I love my coffee to be prepared. The decoction should be prepared either in a coffee filter or a coffee maker with that just right amount of milk added, seeing to it that the slight bitter taste is retained to pep you up. The coffee again should be of the right temperature, neither piping hot which might burn your lips or luke warm which might dampen your spirits but somewhere in between. Not having a chance to indulge in such luxury too often as a busy multi tasking housewife I naturally felt the new eatery just a stone’s throw from my house was a real boon.
The owner extended a hearty welcome and requested me to take my seat(a few chairs were placed on both sides of the eatery, on the road side to be precise). Coffee or tea madam? He asked.
Coffee please, I said and waited eagerly to be served a good cup of coffee inwardly wishing that it would comply with my specifications.
The coffee arrived in a jiffy, prepared right in front of my eyes—a spoonful of instant coffee was mixed to a glass of milk (the milk was kept boiling in a large vessel on the gas stove) to which a teaspoon of sugar was added . The helper extended the glass tumbler with a smile. The sight of the container was enough to put me off and the contents were not much to speak of. The only consolation was the price !
I think it is American etiquette –to compliment the host either on the container or the content or both (which is rare) but I thought it wise to follow “Indian etiquette” and complimented the owner on the price!
n.meera raghavendra rao