Sunday, April 11, 2010

An Ode to a Breakfast Sandwich

On Saturdays during tax season, on my way to work, I sometimes treat myself to a croissant sandwich from a nearby coffee shop. They advertise themselves as a "Drive Thru, Seattle Style" type of coffee establishment. This shop was here before Starbucks came to town. There are now many Starbucks stores in town and this store, locally owned, has seemingly survived the onslaught of mega-sized corporate competition. Their coffees are just as good and the variety of your desired coffee order is just as potentially intimidating. But one thing they have that Starbucks doesn't is this incredible little breakfast sandwich. Healthy? Probably not! But it is a wonderful culinary combination of egg, sausage and cheese buried in a very fresh and tasty croissant. You could get bacon or ham instead of the sausage if that suits your taste. The egg yolk today was actually just very slightly runny, like an over easy egg should be, and just right for me. Yeah, it can be just a bit messy to eat, but a more heavenly and delectable delight would be hard to find anywhere at 7:00 am on a Saturday morning at a drive thru location. In my opinion it beats the hell out of anything similar you can get at McDonalds. At $2.79 it might be a bit pricey, but in this case, I think you get what you pay for. I also ordered a Venti, Vanilla and Raspberry Soy Latte with my sandwich and it, too, was very tasty. It was more expensive than the sandwich and makes for a very pink looking drink. Drinking a pink drink could be embarrassing for such a manly man, such as myself, but I worry more about people wearing pink crocs, and the taste is just to my liking. I have nothing against Starbucks. I feel that I have certainly done my share to help fuel their meteoric rise in the corporate world by buying their products on occasion. My daughter has worked at one and they are a good employer. Helped her get through college. But in this day and age, to me, it is just a bit refreshing to see a locally owned company survive and thrive in a world seemingly dominated by large corporations controlling vast parts of the consumer marketplace. Now, I don't know about you, but I find it a bit inconvenient to take the scooter to a drive thru. I have done it a few times, but find that it requires some advance planning. One problem for me is that my money and wallet usually reside in my top case when I am riding. The other problem is no cup holder, but these obstacles can be overcome in various ways. If I am on 2 wheels, I generally just park and go inside. Today, regrettably, I drove the famous Canadian Subaru to work, but breakfast was absolutely superb! Sent from my BlackBerry® smartphone with SprintSpeed


  1. I am proud of you. Eschew pink crocs because people will think you are weird, and so far you have your neighbors fooled.I have no poncey cup holder either so we march in step together.

  2. Dear CPA3485 (Jimbo):

    You are quite right to support the local, home-grown variety of coffee shop business. While I do occasionally drink Starbucks coffee, I prefer the java sloshed out by Dunkin Donuts if there is a choice. Starbucks has a slightly bitter taste to it, that is an acquired habit. On the other hand, I do like their lunch sandwiches, which I rank as gourmet (especially the chicken salad and the egg salad sandwiches). The fact that the coffee and sandwiches are horribly over-priced works to the company's disadvantage. So many Starbucks closed around here in the past year of economic reversal.

    I drink 3 to 5 cups of coffee everyday here at home, and the household brand is Nespresso, from Nestlés, which requires a very pricey coffeemaker. Leslie and I got addicted to this stuff while on an assignment in Munich. I was thrilled to find it is available here. I pay $83 every 6 or 7 weeks to get the capsules in the mail. It works out to 53¢ a cup.

    Jimbo, WTF is a Venti, Vanilla and Raspberry Soy Latte ? I mean, why bother? Why not just get a milkshake at the Dairy Queen and sip it while dancing around a May pole? Coffee should come in three strengths: strong, Visigoth, and Nuclear Runoff.

    You never cease to amaze me. Yet there is nothing odd about singing the praises of a god breakfast sandwich.

    Fondest regards,
    Jack • reep • Toad
    Twisted Roads

  3. Jackboy,
    My daughter just informed me of the most incredible order by one of her regular customers.

    Venti Mocha
    2p mocha
    2 1/2 S&L
    1/2 soy 1/2 nonfat
    no whip

    Translation a 2 pump extra large mocha espresso, decaf, 2 1/2 portions sweet and low, 1/2 soy milk, 1/2 nonfat milk, no whip cream, stirred (and the customer wanted to watch the stirring process)
    The employees would argue as to whether the stirring should be clockwise or counter clockwise.

    How's that for WTF!

    As of this comment, I have about 8 returns to finish by Thursday. Most are puds, some will require a little thought. I am just about brain dead.

    My daughter has never heard of Nespresso. Sounds Kinky!

  4. cpa3485Jimbo:

    I am not really a Starbucks customer, nor any other facsimilie thereof either.

    I only have regular coffee at meals as they are refillable, sort of the stingy accountant in me to not pay for subsequent cups.

    We use a powdered concoction which is very tasty. Because of the Asian influence here living in HONGcouver we have numerous choices in the "3 in 1" variety, sometimes you are able to get "2 in 1" if you should so desire. works out to under .20c per cup.

    I don't think I would purchase a capsule machine. We have a single cappucino machine, manual mode with integrated steamer wand should the temptation for good coffee arises. and I have a burr grinder

    Wet Coast Scootin

  5. An alarming number of people have no control over anything in their lives, save the coffee-infused milk drink they order from Starbucks every day. Hence the overblown order you cite. I'm actually a bit surprised the customer didn't specify a temperature, like 119.7ºF.

    I did two stints in the IT department at Starbucks HQ in Seattle, and was given many opportunities to try new concoctions being tested before being introduced to the stores. Maybe my palate is not sufficiently developed, but I find all coffee in North America tastes like dirt dissolved in hot water, and never hesitated to say so. I was a contractor, so they never took offense.

    The sandwich does look good, though I must admit I'm totally addicted to Mickey D's Sausage McMuffin with Egg®. The one closest to the house gives you two for three bucks...

    Scootin' Old Skool

  6. Dear CPA3485 (Jimbo)

    I woke up in a cold sweat the other night, in a mad panic. I had not yet filed my taxes and the folders with my documentation were an utter mess. I was laying in bed, about 4am, when I felt compelled to go through everything. I was done 6 hours later, and rushed the data over to my accountant. The date was April 14th! I had a whole other day! My accountant is a sweet heart, and she knows I'm nuts. She speaks to me like I am an idiot on the edge... And she is right.

    I think Orin is absolutely correct about that ridiculous coffee order. If I was working in Starbucks at the height of the morning rush, and some stooge presented me with those instructions, I'd spit in the cup. Orin is correct again in that most American coffee tastes poorly. Although he probably dislikes Dunkin Donuts coffee too, it is my preference if I am driven to the street.

    This is the Nespresso site if you are interested. I have virtually given up drinking, but this coffee (and the odd cigar) are my few remaining luxuries.

    Fondest regards,
    Jack • reep • Toad
    Twisted Roads

  7. Jack, most Starbucks customers have control issues; the majority of orders are similar to the one in this post. The Stepford Baristas are instructed to smile cheerfully under such circumstances. Oddly enough, such anal-retentive tendencies seem to be absent from customers of independent coffee shops.

    Dunkin' Donuts bailed from the PNW over a decade ago, but when I was in a DD in Massachusetts in 2002, I saw pots of coffee that looked like they'd been made at the turn of the previous century, so I don't imagine I'd like it, either. An East Coast person of my former acquaintance who was fond of saying she moved to Seattle to drink "wicked good coffee" soon waxed poetic about Dunkin' Donuts brew. She made much better coffee in a little Italian espresso pot...

    Scootin' Old Skool

  8. George Carlin said that the more complicated your coffee order the bigger asshole you were. Just passing it along.

    By the way, my order? A tall drip. No room.

    That breakfast sandwich sounds awesome!