I love my coffee. It's literally what gets me out of bed in the morning...aside from my job. Without it, I have none of my usual special powers; such as Chatting, Smiling and People-ing. My sense of humour is also absent when there's no java available.
I own a Nespresso machine, which replaced my Dolce Gusto machine, which replaced my cafietiere, which replaced three years' worth of instant Nescafe sachets I appropriated from every B&B, Hotel and Self Catering property I ever stayed in during my travels with VisitScotland. In other words: my coffee game is strong. Also: I'm a kleptomaniac.
On occasion, I will drag Les out to a coffee shop to sit in but, as we're usually always on the way to and from our travels, more often than not I grab takeaway.
I drink as much coffee at home and I seem to in cafes and motorway services and I have my firm favourites as well as other brands I tend to avoid. Should you ever be confused about the options for takeway cheer inducing; alert making caffiene treats, then look no further:
Takeaway coffee from Subway is actually the whole inspiration for this post and how I wished I'd had an idea of how terrible it was before I spotted a franchise in the middle of Torquay a few weeks and excitedly declared an official Coffee Break.
The branded machine bore the letters WMF and the flat white I ordered was bitter and the colour of dishwater. Despite my distinct lack of coffee that day, I actually couldn't drink it.
I've been known to buy Aldi own brand decaf to drink at work and can confirm that it's 100% better than whatever I was served up at Subway. I'm still not actually convinced it *was* coffee. It was vile.
Result; had several sips and couldn't stomach any more.
Value for money: lets not go there.
I love Costa. I love the cups; I generally love the service and I ADORE the absolutely massive cups they serve my giant non takeaway cappuccino in.
The take away coffee can also found in many, many motorway service stations and I that familiar red branding makes me smile whenever I pass.
Granted, it's just shy of £3 for a large cup but it's good stuff. The only thing I don't like about Costa is the server in Ocean Terminal in Edinburgh who looked at me as I was mentally challenged when I asked for a size that wasn't known to her.
By this I mean I ordered a Starbucks size and, despite it being patently obvious what I was looking for, she stared blankly at me and didn't hesitate to inform me of the terrible, no, unforgivable, mistake I'd just made. You'd think I'd admitted to murdering her puppy.
She was obviously a bolshy Scot, as no one else has the balls to speak to me like this before I've actually *had* my first cup of the day. I decided to let her live, but wished very bad things upon her. Once I'd had some caffeine I felt a bit bad about that, but not enough to take any of it back.
Anyway, self service Costa rocks. Human service in Ocean Terminal: no stars.
Result - Love it.
Price - don't love it but I buy it, regardless.
Value for Money - Please see above
I occasionally visit Starbucks when I don't have access to anything else. I'm not a fan of the coffee (any of it), but, now that I've tried Subway, it has gone up on my list.
I hate the way that, even in the smallest outlets, the servers INSIST on asking for your name and then misspelling it on the side of your cup. Yes, I realise that has nothing to do with the quality of the coffee, but it does annoy the hell out of me while I'm waiting.
What's the name thing all about, anyway? What happens when two cranky little women called Suzanne order venti cappuccinos at the same time? I know that's probably unlikely but, I reckon the chances of being in a Scottish Starbucks and ending up with several customers called Tam isn't that far fetched. Same goes for customers called Daffyd from Brecon.
Result: It'll do when there are no other options
Price: £2.95 for large
Value for money: not great for the taste and the fact that there never actually seems to be much coffee in it. It appears mostly to be milky foam.
I don't eat McDonald's food. Well, I sometimes steal chips from Les but, apart from that, I don't eat McDonald's food. However, take me to a motorway service station and offer me coffee and I'll make a beeline for the closest outlet. Even if I have to look at chicken nuggets while I'm waiting.
McDonald's coffee is unexpectedly great. Not only does it taste like real coffee and keeps you awake all the way from the Lake District to South Lanarkshire, but it is also available at a purse friendly price.
There's very little not to like about this from my point of view. It has actual good amounts of coffee in; you can simply ask for a 'large' without some stuck up student trying to school you in Italian terms; it doesn't taste like instant Nescafe; and it's doesn't cost you £4 a cup, plus the distinct annoyance of someone writing 'Susan' on the side of your cup. Basically, it's amazing. AND they give you that little sticker thing on the side which you can peel off and stick to a bit of card so that you can buy 6 and get the next one free.
Free coffee! Those are my favourite words after 'free wine'.
Value for money: can't knock it
What's your favourite take away coffee brand?