Warm weather calls for ghetto lattes
The Toronto Star is celebrating the arrival of spring with a short instructional video on how to make a ghetto latte. The process is simple: people who don’t want to pony up $3 for an iced latte can simply order a shot of espresso at the counter in a large cup with ice, then pour in milk at the condiment table. Mix it and voila—hobo coffee. The price difference can add up to serious change by the end of the summer. An iced latte at Starbucks: $3.26. A shot of espresso: $1.84. Death stares from the barista: priceless.
In fall 2006, Maclean’s ran a piece about ghetto lattes—a sort of follow-up after the Chicago Tribune found out about them a week earlier. The folks over at Starbucks Gossip also had a heated debate on the issue around the same time, with some baristas applauding customers for their ingenuity, some annoyed by the freeloaders (one went a little overboard, saying they “should be shot”) and most feeling indifferent since, well, they work at Starbucks.
Maclean’s asked Starbucks’ head office about the trend, and the company simply stated, “We provide condiments to our customers so they can make their drinks to their liking… We trust our customers to make the choices that are right for them.”
Translation: for every ghetto latte drinker, there are two suckers willing to pay $6 for a diluted coffee smoothie.