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Too much froth for a coffee

Coffee experience in Delhi cafés may soon change with the brew coming in transparent cups and measured to milimetres.

india Updated: Jan 17, 2010 17:23 IST
Mayank Austen Soofi

CoffeeIs Delhi’s café scene turning transparent as you may now get your fill of cappuchino measured to the milimetres? This comes after a city consumer court not only imposed Rs 1 lakh fine on the coffee chain Barista Lavazza for not disclosing the quantity of coffee served to an aggrieved customer, but also directed that the brew be served in transparent glasses with measurement markings.



Storm over your coffee

Opinions, ofcourse, are divided on this. "Coffee won’t feel like coffee anymore," says DU student Vardhna Puri. "It will be like testing the purity of some cooking ingredient." But research scholar Rachna Rao thinks otherwise. "I think it’s a cute idea," she says. "But then there are many who prefer a more continental experience of white porcelain cups."



Barista Lavazza, however, has no plans of replacing the porcelain cups. "Till we receive an official notification, we won’t remove our opaque cups," says Sanjay Coutinho, the coffee chain's COO.

That’s the way
“I’ve never come across a cappuccino served in a transparent glass,” says Alok Gupta, director of Café Coffee Day. Cafés worldwide have a benchmarked serving standard and the time-tested crockery is chosen after weighing many considerations, such as the curvature and the ability to retain heat. “Having Americano in a millimetre-marked glass will be good provided there’s an automated beep as soon as the coffee reaches a certain level,” jokes Anthony Baer, an European expat. However, Baer admits that he didn’t like the experience of having cappuccino in transparent cups in some Parisian cafés.

While some may snigger, there are those who feel cheated in the cafes. “I went to this fancy place where they charged Rs 100 for hardly a spoonful of Americano,” says Anuradha Gopal, an NGO worker.

Brew it right
“The customers’ concerns are genuine though the idea of measured transparent cups is absurd,” says Santosh Unni, CEO, Costa Coffee India. “Coffee chains have systems and processes to ensure that right coffee goes into each cup.” What if the porcelain cup has too much froth and hardly any coffee? “If you are a regular, you know how just by seeing the cup,” says Barista Lavazza's Sanjay Coutinho. “Others can find out with the spoon.”