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It ain’t no demitasse.

Posted by Big John on January 23, 2011

I visited the USA a few times during the 1970’s and 80’s and was always staggered by the huge size of soft drink (soda) and beverage containers. It seemed that whenever I fancied some refreshment I was not offered the British choice of … “small” … “medium” .. or .. “large”, but the American … “large” … “extra large” .. or .. “JUMBO” ! Although this was a bit of a con when it came to sodas as each paper cup was half full of crushed ice, but what wasn’t a “con” was the free refill of decent coffee you received when eating at an American diner.

Of course that was long before ‘Starbucks’ decided to drown the world in fancy milkshakes masquerading as coffee and invent a new language. You know … all that … “latte” … “macchiato … “frappuccino” bollocks. I suppose they thought that if we were trying to translate the menu we wouldn’t notice the rip-off prices.

Now in the USA ‘Starbucks’ are introducing a new size receptacle … the ‘Trenta’ … which will contain a whopping 916ml. … that’s almost a litre ! … 600 calories of milky muck ! … OK, I know that at the moment ‘Starbucks’ say they will only sell iced coffee etc. in this size (that old half a cup of crushed ice trick again), but how long do you think it will be before Starbuck’s greed ‘public demand’ ensures that all varieties are available in the ‘Trenta’ size ?

I suppose that like all the other American gut-busters it will soon reach our shores where it will be eagerly grabbed by the fat fingers of our fast-food fanatics.

“Trenta” translates into English as ‘thirty’ which is probably the number of pounds you will be putting on if you gulp down this ‘super-size’ measure whenever you fancy a caffeine boost.
Some reports say that the capacity of the average stomach is only 900ml. I wonder if that is true ? … I think I’ll test it once again … I’m off down the pub …

   … for a pint or two !   😉


5 Responses to “It ain’t no demitasse.”

  1. rummuser said

    Hello Big John. I come via Silver Fox’s blog. I am in India. You can imagine how much more the large sizes of everything looks to me!

  2. Grannymar said

    Did you know that Starbucks will actually do a smaller coffee size than ‘large’ here in the UK, but you have to ask for it and of course they will try to put you off. I persisted and got it in several branches.

  3. Grannymar said

    I forgot, I came via Maria’s Silver Fox blog. This time from Northern Ireland.

  4. Big John said

    Welcome ‘Rummuser’ and ‘Grannymar’ and thanks for the comments.

  5. Fortunately, it is still optional to go to Starbuck’s and optional to buy whatever one wishes to buy when one gets there. The existence of a super-size called Trenta might seem (and actually be) absurd, but one neither has to go to Starbuck’s nor select Trenta when one gets there.

    Personally, I prefer Costa to Starbuck’s but if I find myself in need of refreshment (or a toilet stop) and there is a Starbuck’s handy, I am not going to beat myself up for going there.

    I find that if I ask nicely, they will give me a mug of coffee the same size as the one I use at home. They even charge a mug-sized price for it. That seems reasonable to me.

    What people seem to have missed is that fact that the expansion of coffee shop chains in recent years has provided a welcome alternative to the pub. In Starbuck’s, Costa and Nero, you can sit and read or plink away on your laptop undisturbed for hours on end without the antics of beer-swillers to disturb you. Many people blame the smoking ban for the demise of pubs but I suspect that the “coffee revolution” has also had an effect.

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