Thursday, March 24, 2011

Bye Bye Latte

I am a morning coffee drinker, and occasionally i'll drink a cup in the afternoon if the mood strikes. I am very particular about my coffee though. I don't like it too strong, but I also don't like it weak. In our coffee maker the perfect cup is made by using 8 cups of water to 5 1/2 tbsp of coffee and a dash of cinnamon (a hint from my sisters friend). I am not into the fancy coffee beans either, presidents choice or folgers are just fine.

When I do indulge in an afternoon caffeine fix, i'll usually go for a latte. I find the filtered coffee from most of the big name coffee shops undrinkable. As you know, I am only allergic to peanuts, but I do stay away from all other nuts. If I was allergic to hazelnuts I would never drink coffee out because there is such a high risk of cross contamination between the coffee carafes used in the stores. In fact, I know someone who did have a reaction from this type of cross contamination.

Yesterday it was brought to my attention that one of the Starbucks that I frequent regularly sells peanut butter cookies. Since I never eat the cookies, brownies, cakes or other baked goods due to my allergy I never even look at them.

I was very upset at myself for never realizing this before, but it dawned on me that there is a risk to me and my latte. What if the barista just served a cookie to someone else and touches my cup? What if the peanut butter crumbs land on the counter and I touch it? I pride myself on being super careful, to the point where people have criticized me for how extreme I am. I was a bit upset with myself for having never considered this risk factor to myself, but from this day forward I will start to look at the desserts to make sure there are no peanuty ones that may pose a risk to my latte.

As far as the boy is concerned, he is many years away from being a coffee drinker, but with a tree-nut allergy coffee shops will be out of the question for him.



1 comment:

  1. Every person with allergies has different opinions on this, and I respect every one. Personally, I feel comfortable at my local coffee shop. I have peanut and tree nut allergies, and yes, all of the pastries are definitely off limits. However, my barista is well aware of my allergies, and ensures that my drink is safe. I get plain, skim milk, quad lattes. There is nothing for me to worry about in the espresso or the milk pitcher, since nothing goes into either one that could be problematic. At a lot of coffee shops, you do need to be careful because they will use a spoon to hold back the foam. That could definitely pose a problem for allergies, if that spoon has stirred other drinks with nut flavors (almond, hazelnut) for risk of cross contamination. But, at my shop, this doesn't happen because they believe in free pouring, and because my friend is the only barista (it's a small shop). So, I do think it's possible for people with peanut and tree nut allergies to enjoy lattes. That being said, I completely understand if others are uncomfortable with the idea and just say no. It's a nutty world, and you've got to protect yourself as you see fit.