I’ll posit again, as I have before (mostly to my dogs and myself), that Omaha is a great place to live not only because of the lovely people and cost of living, but the magical way we let some bigger, “hipper” cities test drive embarrassing trends before they get to us. Google Glass and ironically wearing trucker hats, for example. Our lack of concern for what’s popular has staved off yet another ridiculous fad that’s recently hit Starbucks countrywide: the Flat White.
For the ever-loving record, I love a good flat white. Velvety, sweet, expertly steamed milk that would put any kitten to sleep and a stout, pulled-like-she-meant-it double espresso. It’s a small drink that tastes more like coffee than milk and it’s incredibly satisfying. What’s ridiculous about it is that no one at Starbucks has figured out what one is. They obviously took the “fake it till you make it” route here and let me be clear: they are not making it.
Every person I've ever talked to who’s ordered a flat white from me in some adorable accent or another with fingers crossed has straight up told me it’s an anywhere-but-America small latte with a double espresso. It’s a wet cappuccino, it’s a 6oz latte, it’s a 5oz espresso & milk. It’s something widely known and accepted in two other countries (Australia and New Zealand) that absolutely exists here, we just call it something else. Guys, this is like if we spent any more time than we do discussing the difference between American college and British university (they are the same thing, FYI).
Now, I’m not going to fall into this trap they’ve set for specialty coffee people by going to my nearest SBUX and paying actual, real money to try something I know will disappoint me. I know they are doing it wrong for one simple reason: one may order and receive a 16oz flat white at Starbucks without so much as a quick warning from a barista. The main idea of a flat white is that the taste of the espresso is tasteable. If a double espresso is drowned in 14 ounces of milk, I’m guessing the drink won’t be very “coffee-forward.” Dot or no dot.
So, you’re reading the Aromas blog, which means you probably never even consider going to Starbucks, so how does this affect you? It doesn’t. You can still get whatever drink you want. The closest thing on our menu to a flat white is our traditional cappuccino. It’s a six-ounce beverage with a double espresso and slightly more foam than a latte but not as much as we would do for a 12-ounce cappuccino. But, if you order a flat white we won’t have to break out the Alta Vista Babel Fish to know what you mean. If you want less foam, let us know and boom - flat white. If you could not care any less about this whole hullabaloo and you just want to get back to your bottomless cup of Cast Iron and Venti-sized med school book, you do you.
We want to make the drink you want to drink, so talk to us. We’ll make it happen.
See you soon!
Kait and the rest of the Aromas crew