Besides the free wifi (and, well, the coffee), coffee shops in Isla Vista all offer a standard bearer of their brand: baristas. They take your orders, make your drinks, and can in more ways than one crush your dreams. So, I took the time to visit any and all coffee places in the vicinity of IV to rank how douchey their baristas are.
6.) Coffee cart outside Buchanan:
We start with the angels of this list. These people do not deserve anyone’s bullshit. They probably only work there because they have to in order support themselves, so when you order something complicated from there, you’re actually the douche.
5.) Starbucks in the UCEN:
Campus’s new caf-fiend congregation most likely features a few student baristas that had no idea what they were getting into. Ordering a Unicorn frappuccino with pumpkin spice whipped cream is just not coffee, so we must pity our peers in this position when 23 basic bitches named Becky, Lauren, Sophie, or Brittney line up to order unfathomable concoctions sure to induce diabetes.
4.) Starbucks in IV:
Here’s where things start to get tricky. Like the other Starbucks, this one offers to pay tuition. So the fact they’re getting hooked up by a corporation most definitely gives them a veiled incentive to be nice. You may say “thank you” to them, but deep down they’re probably thinking “No, thank YOU” because that cup of coffee you just ordered is allowing them to ball out the fuck out.
3.) Coffee Collab:
On the surface, the Coffee Collab looks like an inclusive refuge for transient hippies, indie kids, and thinkers alike, which, in many ways, it is. But when you engage with some of their employees, things can change quite quickly. Some will attempt to exploit your worldview, and make interesting judgements based upon what they find. One may call you a sucker, while another may compliment you on your unicorn horn. It’s really hit or miss.
2.) The French Press:
This spot is undoubtedly the most gentrified looking and white-washed coffee shop on the West Coast. So, unless you want to talk to the barista about how much you love The Decemberists, skiing, and tasting fine wine, you best stay away unless you can handle the vanilla syrup.
This place is basically the only coffee shop that has its own rushing process. And it’s pretty clear that they’d like to keep it this way, as the only people that can afford to eat or drink here are those that can afford to pay dues to have a group of friends. So when you walk into Cajé, don’t expect to feel welcome unless you plan to pledge allegiance to its brotherhood.
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