The Scene: Hydro, Wellington Beach, Hamilton East
The Trade: Rocket Coffee (Hamilton)
Price per double flat white: $4
Barista: Jessica Nixon
On the Ground: Word of mouth is a powerful force and it hadn't been kind to Hydro. Caffiend decided to sample his old haunt with a lens man on an overcast Wednesday at 10am. There was a lone couple outside, aged 60? 65? Not a positive sign.
The lens man had a shocker experience there recently. His long black burnt close to the point of sending it back. He didn't. It's always an awkward experience best avoided.
The service wasn't overly friendly. Mechanical, maybe. And hurried. On the plus side, every brews is double shot and a decent price at $4 a pop.
It was five minutes before the barista delivered the coffees. The lens man was pleasantly surprised with his long black. Not burnt. Just right.
Caffiend's wasn't right. There was no pretty heart or leaf or contrast in the froth and it suffered the same issue as the lens man's "shocker" long black.
Young Ms Nixon has only been on barista duty for six months. She'll need to sharpen her skills and consistently deliver the goods to get people talking favourably of Hydro again.
Until then, Caffiend won't be back.
The Verdict: 4 out of 10. Docket wisdom - "be kind to each other".
Stimulus: Young people experiment with drugs and young Caffiend was no different. He once downed instant coffee after instant coffee to see what happened. His hands shook. His heart pounded. He never did it again.