40 Barista Confessions That Prove They Earn Their TipsBy Jennifer Snow
Competent baristas take their job seriously but avoid taking themselves too seriously. They understand that producing a quality beverage is as much about satisfying the consumer as it is about the science of coffee creation. Because of this, their task is more complex than it may seem. First, there are all the technical things, such as learning to generate silky steamed milk with the ideal texture and then creating stunning latte art. Then comes the hard part!
The typical aches and pains of working in the hospitality industry include scrubbing the restrooms and cleaning the coffee makers. However, it’s the questions, concerns, and criticisms of their clientele that present the most problems. With all this in mind, we invite you to dive into this compilation of barista tales that will make you understand just how hard they work for their tips.
Read on for your daily dose of caffeine!
Grab and Go
Are you experiencing a coffee craving? All you need to do is enter a coffee shop and place your order. Line up at the counter, describe the beverage you’re craving, and give your name to the barista. All that’s left is to wait for your name to be called.
After reading this story, we will stay close to the counter after placing our orders. We don’t want to fall victim to a coffee thief! We wonder whether this thief had placed an order at all. Perhaps they just crept into Starbucks and waited for an opportunity to take the drink of a customer who was too slow.
Many coffee shop patrons have the terrible habit of dropping their cash on the counter rather than handing it to the person serving them. The employee then has to painstakingly pick up the coins in front of the customer and count the pennies. Naturally, this type of customer is prone to pulling out an even more annoying surprise.
This story’s customer is incredibly annoying since he insisted on having his barista count all his coins before handing over a $20 note he had with him the entire time.
Never Ask Questions Again
When placing a coffee order, some people can be rather obstinate. Perhaps it stems from the fact that they think being questioned equates to being called an idiot. The problem is that your barista will almost always know more about coffee than you do, so when it comes down to it, you should probably defer to their expertise.
Baristas are educated professionals who, if you bothered to ask, could tell you incredible things about the science behind coffee creation. The best action is simply to pay attention when they indicate that your order is illogical. Unlike the woman in this story, you may learn a thing or two!
Working as a barista entails interacting with a wide range of people. Some of your customers will be easy to work with, while others may be challenging. A few may be particularly difficult to manage because they will be picky and unkind about you and your efforts.
This customer treated their barista in a judgemental and contemptuous manner. Here’s a PSA for that customer: Just because you don’t wear an apron at work, doesn’t mean you’re a better or more worthy person. Whatever occurs as a barista, you should maintain your composure and be prepared to settle disputes calmly.
Violated Honey Bear
It can become monotonous to consistently use simple white table sugar for those who enjoy slightly sweet coffee. Fortunately, there are a few choices, some of which have advantages for health and taste. One of these fantastic substitutes is honey.
Many nations serve honey in honey bear-shaped containers with a nozzle or lid at one end. In this coffee shop tale, the customer added honey to his cup of tea before licking the bear’s cover for reasons we can’t even begin to fathom.
A bathroom tragedy ranks among the worst possible scenarios a customer can experience in a store. For the baristas, who make coffee all day long, it’s even worse. They must perform other duties, including cleaning the bathrooms after emergencies.
This poor barista had to deal with an emergency “issue” in the restroom, and we feel terrible for her. The fact that this occurred during the day’s busiest period only made matters worse. What a great way to end your day.
This Isn’t Starbucks
The majority of customers behave as though every coffee shop is Starbucks. Some even attempt to use Starbucks gift cards as payment. They also request “venti” lattes and order frappuccinos that simply don’t exist outside of the Starbucks universe. Why are these people acting this way? Why do these customers consider Starbucks to be the norm for all coffee shops?
To distinguish their names from Starbucks, we advise these coffee businesses to post signs proclaiming, “We Are Not Starbucks,” and to immediately give their menu an overhaul, ensuring their business name is in large, bold letters, with no dark green imagery in sight.
Working with the Public
It is difficult to forecast what the public will do when they enter your store. While some are monsters who engage in crazy behavior, others are genuinely attentive and caring. Life is like that, right?
Many of those nasty and insane individuals will regrettably have access to hot drinks when you encounter them in a coffee shop. Nevertheless, if you’re a barista, you must remain professional, polite, and confident. Even if a customer calls you “useless” and dumps her latte on you, there’s no scope for getting upset. What a life baristas lead!
Most women who have positions where they interact with the public are aware that sometimes people cross personal li1nes. For example, while you’re clearing their table, a customer might make improper comments or keep reminding you to smile. They might make a gross comment about your uniform or inquire about private things. What’s a barista to do?
In one instance, a client kissed their barista for creating latte art, going against all societal norms. The fact that the latte art said “kiss me” is the only justifiable explanation for this.
One unpleasant customer decided to take nastiness to the extreme by throwing the cash for his blueberry muffin at the barista. Unfortunately, it struck her, and half of it fell to the ground. If this is a common situation at the counter, their barista training should also cover catching pennies
Surprisingly, despite seeing this, the client who threw the cash didn’t even say sorry. Instead, he instructed the barista to be better at catching flying cash. We hope he counted wrong and accidentally gave her a tip with all those pennies!
Unfortunately, many clients appear to put off thinking about their order until the very last moment. These individuals go to the movie theater and ask for “popcorn and a drink” without indicating their preferred size or flavor. They get frustrated and act as though you are the fool when you ask them for their preferences.
People frequently believe that their definition of “a regular” is the same as everyone else’s, which creates difficulty in coffee shops. It’s not, of course. So, be sure to explain to your barista precisely what you want!
Not Grateful at All
It can be challenging to see someone treat a child in a way that you believe is improper. Even though you know it is inappropriate for you to get involved, you can’t help but feel that something is off.
In this barista tale, a father and a young child were snacking in the coffee shop. Unfortunately, the guy simply yelled at the boy when he began choking on an apple. Amazingly, the barista felt compelled to step in and do the Heimlich maneuver on the child. Thank goodness someone was being a responsible adult!
Is there anything more annoying than haughty tourists? You know the type: those who, ever since spending the evening at Bondi Beach, just can’t appreciate a sunset elsewhere. Or the individuals who recently returned from a two-week stay in Tokyo and now frown upon any “American” sushi that comes their way.
This particular character spent a year in Italy and developed a massive ego about their taste in coffee. We hope his kids don’t behave like this when ordering pizza.
An Early Morning Drip
Many different pieces of equipment can be bought to craft coffee, and every country has its ways of coaxing a distinctive flavor from the beans. For example, coffee can be brewed in a percolator, a filter, or a French Press, and the brewing method will affect how the coffee tastes.
Although dealing with a grumpy customer might be stressful, try not to allow your frustration to turn sour. For example, this irate client complained after ordering a manual drip coffee but not realizing that it takes longer to prepare. The lesson here is to ask questions before you let your fury build.
The real benefit of a drive-thru coffee shop is that it offers a quick, practical alternative for customers who don’t have time for a dine-in experience. This tale is particularly bizarre because it concerns a customer who ordered coffee the day before and then complained that it was cold when they arrived.
The person should have acknowledged that the move was a ruse that couldn’t possibly succeed. They chose to leave instead after throwing their cold coffee through the drive-through window.
Servers, baristas, and other retail and hospitality employees receive inadequate pay in the US. These dedicated individuals must rely on gratuities, paid at clients’ discretion, to supplement their income. Tips should not count as house money. Only waiters, runners, waitresses, and other front-of-the-house staff who interact with clients should receive tips.
Customers are also notoriously fickle, as we all know. In this instance, a client shamelessly stole $5 from the tip jar, effectively stealing from the staff who worked all day to earn it. Outrageous!
A Coffee with Attitude, Please
A barista has to interact with many different types of customers. Some people have a rough day, some are up for a coffee party, and some haven’t slept well in a few days. No matter which type of customer you are, it’s important to pay close attention when placing an order. For example, you need to choose a drink that fits within your budget.
Unfortunately, the customer in this story didn’t get the memo. He thought he could order whatever he wanted and the barista would just take whatever cash he had. Some people are so entitled!
A British Cuppa
The absence of quality tea, a favorite beverage of Britons, is a problem when they visit other nations. It’s evident that the British love tea more than coffee, whether they drink it with milk, sugar, lemon, or a splash of honey.
From the simplicity of a morning tea break to the lavishness of afternoon tea, this beverage is deeply ingrained in the British way of life. While we respect this tradition, we had no idea that British folks were prone to temper tantrums if a “good cuppa” isn’t available.
Demanding Free Products
Every company deals with complaints. They can even help a shop’s reputation if they are correctly handled. Unfortunately, some people feel they can impose their own set of regulations when patronizing a business. As a result, they mishandle objects, use unpleasant language with employees, and make odd demands based on their wants and whims.
These individuals frequently anticipate receiving free goods and services because they believe they are the center of the universe. This woman wanted to start a quarrel because she found it outrageous that she had to pay for steamed milk.
Unfortunately, both the consumer and the barista in this situation were aware of the adage, “the customer is always right.” In truth, the expression is not meant to be taken literally. Your primary aim should be to please your consumers, but you should also consider whether they are worth the extra work.
The barista in this anecdote gently declined to whisk the cinnamon powder into a drink to avoid clogging the steam wand. Unfortunately, this infuriated the customer. Amazingly, once he had cooled down, the man returned and apologized, urging the barista to create the drinks according to their preferences.
Sip and Slip
The barista in this scenario was asked to report to work at half-past three and complete the entire shift by themselves. The barista was serving a long line of commuters sipping coffee when she noticed Bill Nye the Science Guy there.
Naturally, the barista became momentarily star-struck, completely screwing up the orders. The poor thing then tripped and fell onto the filthy coffee shop floor. They had to finish their shift alone, wearing soiled clothes and doing their best to conceal a bleeding head wound.
Instant Seafood Dinner
A customer came out of a coffee shop restroom to inform their barista that they had discovered a lobster in the toilet. A lobster? That’s right! A gigantic aquatic insect with claws was apparently hanging out in the coffee shop bathroom. What could a lobster be doing in there?
The unwitting clam was planted in the coffee shop bathroom by a local kid who had stolen it from the adjacent store. Fortunately, all of this resulted in someone having lobster for supper. Lobster sounds delicious to us, but toilet lobster? That we’re not so sure about!
To Help or Not to Help
An angry consumer might be challenging. However, do not let their resentment or fury affect you or damage your self-esteem. Instead, make an effort to focus on them and present a solution. Stay optimistic, and don’t let this experience undermine your self-confidence.
Employees frequently experience this, especially those who serve coffee and wear aprons. This customer must have had specific expectations for the type of towel she wanted to wipe herself down with when she peed her pants in the coffee line. Perhaps she’s given more luxurious towels at other establishments.
Snow Storms and Syrup
Working with the public makes you aware of how peculiar some people can be. Although you’ve always known that individuals differ, working in retail or the hospitality industry makes you instantly aware of the wide variety of people who exist. You’ll meet everyone from the friendliest to the rudest clients ever.
People who order coffee with 16 extra pumps of hazelnut syrup never tip. These people also feel no shame in having a barista push their car out of a snowbank and still not leaving a tip. How rude can you be?
Meeting Customer Standards
In most situations, people want to feel like they’re in charge. Baristas generally don’t want to argue with them. Some patrons are, unfortunately, unable to leave well enough alone, instead feeling the urge to intimidate the barista.
Even though their saintly barista had memorized their order, this pair insisted on repeating it each time. And to make matters worse, after placing their absurd order, they poked their fingers into the latte art to verify the bubble consistency. This is unacceptable behavior. We hope they tipped well!
Paying with Tips
It’s common to see tip jars at the counter and in the window at drive-thru coffee shops, but does that indicate that a tip is required or merely appreciated? Gratuities are considered precious by baristas. They contribute significantly to take-home pay.
This barista became quite angry when a customer assumed he could reach into the tip jar to pay the outstanding amount on his bill. Though 10 cents might not seem significant, if everyone stole this amount of money from the tip jar, there wouldn’t be anything left for the hardworking baristas.
Another Coffee Expert
Coffee is considered one of the world’s most well-known beverages. It is also one of the healthiest, according to several health professionals. However, when it comes to consumer decisions and health, people are often inconsistent. Even though we consume superfoods and take multivitamins, we also regularly consume Chinese takeout.
The client in this barista story had some strange ideas about what constitutes a healthy diet. On the one hand, he wanted ice cubes in his coffee to prevent oral cancer. Yet, on the other hand, he idly sprinkled 17 packets of artificial sweetener into his beverage.
It’s no secret that teenagers prefer coffee shops to restaurants for social gatherings. This is because coffee shops typically offer a quieter environment than restaurants. Therefore, to encourage customers to spend a lot of time speaking with friends, the coffee shop’s space is designed to be friendly and comfortable.
How can teenagers pass the time when they don’t always have the money for pricey coffee? They can order water and tiny cups of whipped cream and observe the results. We feel bad for the baristas who had to watch this strange adolescent behavior.
We’d love to see a short film adaptation of this fantastic story. When an inspector visits a coffee shop, the manager must provide a tour of the establishment. But what happens if an animated and boisterous pug appears? Mayhem is bound to ensue.
To subdue the raucous invader, the staff grabbed brooms and garbage bags in a panic. But, of course, the little pug was finally scooped up and taken away by its owner, who left unperturbed. We’re sure no harm was done, although the boss did seem upset!
An Awful Lot of Lattes
This barista narrative is brief and uncomplicated, yet it communicates the necessary information. The satisfaction of completing all of his orders on time is little consolation for the fact that no tip was given. After creating 46 drinks, complete with beautiful latte art, you’d think at least one person would respect your work.
How long would it take to prepare 46 lattes, now that you think about it? Were they all crafted to perfection? Were they all crafted for the same customer? The most crucial question is: Why didn’t they tip?
Extra Hot Coffee
You’d be surprised at just how much your coffee tastes reveal about your character. For example, although the customer in this story wanted his drink to be precisely 200 degrees, he only used the vague term, “extra hot.” Of course, this eventually led to disaster.
As you might anticipate, the barista provided the customer with the extra hot coffee he requested rather than the 200-degree coffee he truly desired. The man then dumped the coffee on his arm in a rage to demonstrate that it wasn’t hot enough.
Out of Order
There are a lot of annoying aspects in this barista horror story. These aspects combine to create a horrific circumstance that only a person working for minimum pay would experience. They say if your business is in the hospitality or service sector, a clean restroom makes all the difference in how well customers are treated.
First, someone made a massive mess in the restroom, blocking it off for other patrons. A customer then proceeded to enter past the barrier, use the toilet, and track an unholy mess through the coffee shop and into the street beyond. They even railed at the employees for the bathroom condition. The audacity!
Dying a Little Bit Inside
It’s wise to consider your order before entering a coffee shop. It benefits you in terms of a positive ordering experience; more importantly, it helps the barista get it just right and ensures everyone else gets their orders promptly.
Sadly, most people fail to follow through on this advice and instead wing their orders, fumbling about to correct anything they should have gotten right in the first place. This customer, for example, poured his coffee into the garbage. What a waste!
Opening a coffee shop is difficult, but a thorough list of coffee shop equipment might help you succeed. One thing to remember is that allowing clients to be close to machinery is always risky. Yes, kids would like to see how to make the ideal drip coffee, but given the temperature, coffee is prepared and kids’ propensity for touching things, you’d only be asking for trouble.
In this barista tale, it wasn’t a kid who played with the equipment but a fully grown adult who should have known better. The customer pushed on a lever, resulting in a horrific mess and a barista being doused in boiling coffee.
Annoying Chocolate Muffin
Some customers just don’t know themselves well enough to be able to order successfully at a coffee shop. They think they’ll like something, only to discover that it’s not at all the kind of thing they enjoy. Take this next customer, for example.
Can you imagine hearing someone who specifically ordered a double chocolate muffin say that it’s too chocolatey? You’d assume they were joking, of course. However, if they maintained a straight face while looking at you, you would have to conceal your smile. Wouldn’t the phrase “double chocolate” give you a hint as to what flavors might predominate in such a muffin?
Can’t Hold It
Coffee shops play host to the full range of life events, from first dates to breakups and everything in between. Of course, there have been some incredibly gruesome barista restroom tales, but none involved vomiting… until now. Warning: this story is unpleasant!
In this humorous but disgusting tale, a young child rushes into a coffee shop and requests to use the restroom. Unfortunately, he throws up in front of the barista before he makes it somewhere more appropriate. The worst part is that while the barista is cleaning up the spill, undigested mac and cheese pieces keep getting caught in the mop filter. Ugh!
Tastes like Chai
Nothing is quite as soothing as a cup of Indian Masala Chai, whether on a cool summer night or a frosty winter’s morning. For a balanced and creamy dose of chai, black tea is boiled with comforting, fragrant spices and whole milk. For dipping, Parle-G biscuits or cake rusks work best.
According to the barista, this customer complained that her vanilla coffee with cinnamon tasted more like a chai latte than a coffee. The problem appears to be that she ordered a beverage that had chai latte-like components. Of course it was reminiscent of chai!
We all know that being pregnant can lead to all kinds of annoyances and ridiculous whims. It completely drains you since your body is churning with hormones, and you’re developing another human. However, the person offering you coffee is not at fault for this.
A pregnant woman ordered a muffin, and when she was advised there were none left, she threw a fit. Then, embarrassingly, the woman and her husband yelled at the staff. How can people be this self-involved? Yes, pumpkin muffins are delicious, but even when pregnant, no one owes you any pumpkiny goodness.
Who’s at Fault?
Anyone with a job requiring them to interact with the public understands that the world is full of people who are only out to make your life more difficult. These people don’t follow the norms and regulations of daily life. Instead, they believe that since they are consumers, they are always right and ought to receive anything they request.
In this instance, a patron of a coffee shop seemed to believe that the place ought to replace her daughter’s shoes. But the daughter, not the workers, dropped the drink.
No Foam Please
It’s pretty astonishing to see how enraged some folks can become if their coffee order is incorrect. Yes, they lead busy lifestyles and are always rushing. But that doesn’t justify the extreme rudeness, rage, and malice displayed by some coffee shop patrons.
Because a customer discovered one milk bubble in her no-foam latte, the barista ended up with a face full of coffee. Thank goodness it happened in an airport because the customer didn’t get away with such abhorrent behavior.