Categories
Culture Fast Food Restaurants

Popular UK Restaurant Chain Trains Its Baristas In Martial Arts

Photo Courtesy: LEON

You may have heard that popular UK resultant chain Leon is coming to the United States soon. Known as “The Future of Fast Food,” the restaurant follows a unique model where they offer cuisines from around the world at a more affordable price point, but manages to maintain quality ingredients.

Even though Leon is taking strides to cement themselves in the future, we discovered that the restaurant chain draws tutelage from the past as well: Baristas at Leon are schooled in the ancient martial art of Wing Tsun, also referred to as Wing Chun, as a free elective during off hours.

It looks a little something like this.

The idea behind Leon offering their baristas courses in Wing Tsun is to help promote well-being among employees. Leon holds Wing Tsun sessions for restaurant managers and often begins meetings practicing the exercises.

Shīfu Julian Hitch, Leon’s Director of Wellness and Wing Tsun Master explains the core philosophies the Leon team learns during these lessons.

“Wing Tsun is focused on improving the quality of your life,” Hitch says. “It gives both practical tools for physically improving your everyday movements and guidance for personal development. Importantly for us, it is also grounded in well-being, helping us all to achieve physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual harmony.”

He adds that the training also provides a platform for his employees to connect socially.

Everyone at Leon is taught specific breathing techniques to enhance personal calmness and increase their ability to handle stress.

“In the classes and the manuals, we teach how movements such as the Wing Tsun punch help us look after our body and increase the speed and efficiency of how we move,” Hitch says. “In particular this involves the use of low elbow positions for stability and strength, reducing the strain on the shoulders.”

The aspects of Wing Tsun taught to baristas include:

  • Relaxation: the ability to find personal calm despite whatever is going on around us.
  • Flow: the ability to create ‘effortless focus’.
  • Mastery: the ability to constantly improve on everything we do.

Three physical principles Hitch teaches his students are:

  • Posture: the ability to stand upright and minimize the stresses on the body
  • Natural body movements: the ability to move our body in the most natural way
  • Shortest Line: the ability to move in the shortest line between different objects
  • Mini-Max: the ability to always look for the minimum effort for maximum results when moving.
Photo Courtesy of Leon

With those physical foundations instilled, Hitch mentions that productivity has noticeably grown among the baristas.

“In one notable example, we evaluated our baristas in three areas: number of coffee made in six minutes, their heart rate, and the overall quality of the coffee,” Hitch says. “After studying Wing Tsun, Leon baristas were reevaluated, and we found that they had significantly improved in all three areas: They increased their average speed by 30 seconds, thus making more coffee in the six-minute time span.”

The positive results weren’t just noticeble on the professional side, but also the personal.

“Their average heart rate went down by 18 beats per minute (the highest was 40 bpm), and the quality of coffee improved,” Hitch continues. “The baristas felt far more relaxed after the training – feeling it set them up for the week ahead. There was hugely positive feedback from both the managers and the baristas in the personal and professional changes that had happened.”

With this success, Leon plans to apply Wing Tsun to other areas of the restaurant including the kitchen staff.

Categories
Drinks Fast Food Hit-Or-Miss

How Frappuccinos Cause Long Wait Times At Starbucks

*UPDATE: A Starbucks representative reached out and said the company will be reducing its limited time offer Frappuccinos by 30 percent this year. They’ve also changed “Frappy Hours” to a more inclusive Happy Hour, with more drinks, aside from Frappuccinos. While other issues addressed in this article still remain, it looks like they’re decreasing the emphasis on Frappuccinos, making both barista, and customer lives easier. 

If you’re a regular at Starbucks, you’ve probably seen a rush hour or two where there’s 10 customers waiting on their drinks, as another 11 wait in line to place their order.

It’s just a madhouse.

Partial perpetrators are Frappuccino drinkers, who slow things down and get baristas out of their groove.

It’s compounded even more when a seasonal trendy Frappuccino, such as the Unicorn Frap or Crystal Ball Frap hits stores.

You might remember this dramatic kid, crying his eyes out after the Unicorn Frap craze:

A quick look at the Starbucks subreddit, and you’ll regularly see the Frappuccino frustration, regardless of the topic.

These Frappuccinos actually slow things down for a company that prides itself on getting you coffee, fast.

You know damn well you get pissed if you wait more than a couple minutes to get your drink. Well, you might want to thank Frappuccino drinkers for that.

Baristas on Reddit have weighed in, explaining that while Frappuccinos are not hard to make, they still cause quite a few problems in the heat of constant rush hours. In case you’ve ever wondered what it’s like on the other side of that store, here are the exact issues baristas have with Frappuccinos:

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Too Many Steps

“… if they order like 4 of the same kind of Frap, it’s not so bad because we can make them all in the same batch, typically. However if someone orders a java chip, vanilla bean, caramel and mocha Frap, those are all entirely different builds and we have to make them one at a time. fraps have about 8 steps to them,” – jollysonline

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“Just a very involved process to make. Not difficult per-say by itself. But when you toss one into a line of 10 lattes it can really bog things down.” – crazymutherfucker

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“They just require a lot of steps and can take us out of whatever groove we’re in,” –  kfra74

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They Cause A Ruckus Back There

A post shared by Amanda Stein (@manikmuse) on


“The worst part of making Fraps isn’t the Frap itself, it’s the fact that cold bar is a hot mess. There’s always 2-3 people trying to cluster around the same crowded surface, it’s covered in water, it’s cluttered and messy and impossible to work on. I try to wipe it down and put everything away, like, every five minutes, but the mess immediately pops back up. It’s just a hellish workspace. I honestly hate making teas and refreshers just as much as I do Frappuccinos — the only difference is that teas and refreshers I can just dump in a cup and get out of that disaster zone. With making Frappuccinos, I actually have to hang out there.” – Pettisoiseaux

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“I love working cold bar. I just tend to get soaked to my skin from the ice going by everywhere. I even find it in my apron pockets!!!” – javagirl2015

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To Some, They’re Not Challenging Enough

“The reason I hate making Frappuccinos is that there is very little skill involved compared to making a hot latte or something. At least with hot beverages I can challenge myself to make the perfect foam, but Frappuccinos is just counting basically.” – coldfoam

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They Cause Injury

“The pumps have actually destroyed my shoulder. I cannot be on cold bar because of it. Any time I pump any of the cold bar syrups, my shoulder is in immense pain.” AniseMarie

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The Recipes Are Getting Way Too Complicated


“Recipes for Frappuccinos are getting more and more absurd. S’mores had like nine steps. Ribbon Crunch basically asks us to serve a lethal dose of sugar.” – imgettingbetternow

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Secret Menus


“Little kids and their secret menus drive me nuts.” – financemajot
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“I wouldn’t mind if it didn’t seem like secret menu stuff was only ordered during busy times.” – Spazzbro
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They’re Not Really Fully Trained For Your Secret Order

“For fuck’s sake, some of us are hardly trained on the regular drinks. Seriously, beyond the latte which I already knew how to make), nearly all of my barista skills have been developed on my own time.” – Kickingpplisfun

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Admittedly, some of this is kind of our fault here at Foodbeast. I’d like to apologize to baristas for enabling people to try those sugary Unicorn Frappuccinos. I’d also like to apologize for publicizing secret menu items, no longer making them so secret.

Though you can’t fully blame us for all these new crazy 10-step Frappuccinos that Starbucks officially releases. Take that up with the big wigs.

It does seem like a pain to make Frappuccinos. Next time you walk in and order a secret menu Frap, just know that they’ll gladly make it for you, but also be aware that you’re slowing things down for everyone, and the barista dies a little inside.

Categories
Fast Food Hit-Or-Miss

Baristas Reveal How They Flirt With Their Customer Crushes

You walk into Starbucks, see the usual smiling face behind the counter who flutters her eyelashes, and draws hearts on your cup, making you think to yourself, “Does she like me, or is she just being really, really nice?”

Well, most of the time, they are just being nice, but there are times where the barista’s heart races at the sight of a certain customer.

Instagram account Barista Life put up a funny meme with Kris Jenner looking unamused, and a caption saying “When I put a heart and a smiley face on a cute boy’s cup and he doesn’t immediately ask for my number.”

The account asked its followers to comment their flirtatious experiences with customers, and some ended up as wins, although there were also a lot of “L’s.”

Yeah, baristas might hate me for this one, as now customers are going to start thinking they always have a chance, but I’m sure it’s not anything they haven’t dealt with.

Here are some of the best responses from the thread, as baristas admit that they too catch the love bug at work:

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The Sadness

 

@_trishcat_ — “I gave a customer my number… he stopped coming in the store.. he studied in my store everyday.”

@henrypetty — “No barista ever puts hearts on my cup 😭”

@emilygordon__ — “My first week at a coffee shop I tried to put a heart on a cute boy’s latte and my latte skills weren’t there yet and he told me his drink looked like a rooster.”

@nataliepotthoff — “@katelyn_clancey Remember that one time when you put my number on Jay’s cup and he stopped coming In? 😂😂😅😅”

@lexiebunofsky — “One time I typed the boys name “Tony” followed by my phone number and after finishing his drink he looked at it and threw it away. Never again.”

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He’ll Notice You One Day

 

@curwhibblecat — “BLAKE, IF UR OUT THERE..”

@bellabrundage — “@sabaaaf THE BOY IN THE CORNER”

@lifewjessa — “ANDREW!!!!! 💔😭 @linh.bartolo”

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The Awkwardness

@taylor.finnigan — “He told me I had I had a nice smile so I said ” I’ll be here all week” and winked then gave him finger guns 👈🏻👈🏻”

@erin_frances_oneill — “@nataliepotthoff- ‘I like baseball’ 😂❤️⚾️”

@peachymeanbean — “I once had a customer ask me to put a sticky note with her number on a guys drink. She became a regular and the guy ended up being kind of a creep.”

@j.aassy — “I once put a smiley face on my co-workers cup bc he’s my friend and everyone assumed I was flirting with him and I was like 😒 i have a bf?!!!?!”

@kristalucht — “@__gothclaudia that time you wrote “love your look” on her cup and she didn’t say anything. (The audio is 🔑)”

@fumbles27 — “One time I wrote my number on a guys cup who I thought was flirting with me (he wasn’t) then he came in the next day with his wife and newborn baby. He’s a regular and I hide every time I see him.”

When It Actually Works

@taufeeqfakir — “Successfully flirted! One of my customers became a solid girlfriend.”

@debsdeiso89 — “I put a smiley face on a customer’s cup and long story short we’ve been married for 3 years now

@radiotot — “I successfully hooked up a partner and his now husband. Customer came in every day and coworker kept getting all flustered so I wrote his #, “call me,” and a winky face on the cup. He was called that night, they went on a date soon after, and got married last year.”

@sleo_ — “Met my husband working at Starbucks. He was one of our regulars 😁💕”

@sir_spencer_mar10 — I wrote on a girl’s lid “Next one’s on me” and put my phone number and we are still talking and have a date next week.”

Categories
Drinks Fast Food Features

Baristas HATE The Unicorn Frappuccino And Want It To Die Already

A post shared by Isai Rocha (@izzy_serious) on

Some Starbucks baristas will bitch about having to make anything beyond a latte or iced coffee, so now that everyone’s flocking to the coffee shop for the new Unicorn Frappuccinos, it’s apparently hell on Earth for the employees.

A Colorado Starbucks barista named Braden Burson posted a video to Twitter showing strong disapproval of the new drink, as the orders have been nonstop, effectively driving workers crazy.

 “PLEASE DON’T GET IT!” Burson pleaded. “I’VE NEVER BEEN SO STRESSED OUT IN MY ENTIRE LIFE!”

It doesn’t look like this new Frappuccino will win over the baristas any time soon. Even scrolling through Reddit, Baristas seem to agree that this Unicorn madness is stressful:

Me thinking about all the unicorn Frappuccinos I’m gonna have to make from starbucks


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When corporate says we’re returning to our coffeehouse roots then launches unicorn frappuccinos from starbucks


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Took this after leaving work today. from starbucks

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There is no God… Unicorns killed Him. from starbucks

Luckily for them, this Frap will be long gone by Sunday. Though the battle scars might still remain for far longer.

Categories
Fast Food Hit-Or-Miss

Starbucks Barista Leaves Savage Note For Lazy Coworker

If you’ve ever worked, well, anywhere, you know what it’s like having to pick up the slack for a coworker. You probably have that person in mind right now, as they’ve probably clocked out from a morning shift, several times, and left you with a mess to clean up.

This particular Starbucks barista wasn’t taking that any longer.

Reddit user Frappuccinowhore posted a picture titled “When one of your partners just doesn’t fucking get it,” showing a “GTFO List” of things that need to be checked around the store, presumably before clocking out.

rhv8o-xk6inkhr5_d3wvl1p0qocjvfwghsge-l2hmz4

The note seems to be posted on the side of the monitor on the cash register, and should be easy to spot by even the most airheaded work mate.

The end of the note says, “If you have time to lean, you have time to clean,” which reminds me of my 68-year old store manager during my days working at a Ralph’s grocery store.

This looks like a last ditch effort, in hopes that the worker gets their shit together.

We’re hoping the particular lazy person at this store got the hint, but from personal experience, I’ll tell you they probably didn’t. They’re going to scoff at it, chill in the back of the store, catch Pokemon on their phone, all while everyone else is trying to tidy up in the front.

The note was good, though, and should stir the pot a bit at that Starbucks location.

Categories
Fast Food Hit-Or-Miss

How Starbucks Baristas Really Feel About Your ‘Secret Menu’ Orders

secret-menu-drinks

If you’re a fan of Starbucks’ Pink Drink, Butterbeer Frappuccino, or the Thin Mint Frappuccino, you’re technically ordering things that don’t exist, but baristas are skilled enough to make them all happen.

I’m talking about items on the “Secret Menu” of course, and while your local store might be cool with making an espresso-filled blended drink called a “Chola,” try ordering that at another store, and they’ll look at you with an Aubrey Plaza-like face of befuddlement.

Baristas took to Reddit and expressed how they felt about customers barging into their stores and ordering these imaginary drinks.

Their reactions may, or may not surprise you, but at least they’re being honest about our crazy requests.


Know the Ingredients

It’s not necessarily irritating if you know what the ingredients are. It’s really only frustrating when people come in and say something like “Let me have a Twix Frap!” and they expect us to know how to do it and say it is on the “secret” menu. But as long as you know what goes in it we’ll be happy to make it for you! We just want you to be happy with your drink. 🙂


Don’t Get Mad If the Barista Doesn’t Know What You’re Talking About

Only frustrating when people get mad when we don’t know what’s in it. Nobody actually minds, as long as you have the recipe. My main policy is if we don’t have a button for it in the special section, and you don’t have a recipe, I’m not getting my phone out to google whatever $8 frap you want. You obviously don’t want it enough.


Some Baristas Get Really Freaked Out

girlscoutfraps

For fuck’s sake, some of us are hardly trained on the regular drinks. Seriously, beyond the latte(which I already knew how to make), nearly all of my barista skills have been developed on my own time.


Don’t Be A Dick When Ordering Something That’s Not On-Menu

The people that order them are what make the drinks themselves annoying. Recipe, fine. When people act like it’s a thing for us, fuck off.


Ah, The Infamous Pink Drink

Starbucks-Pink-Drink-02

Cust: “It’s on the secret menu, I know you guys have it”
Me: “Oh yeah, it’s a secret to us too”
Cust: …
Me: “but if you know the recipe I’d be happy to make it for you”
Cust: …
Me: ….
Cust: “Venti Caramel Frappuccino”
I don’t even mind the [Pink] drink so much, it’s just the principle of the matter


They Do Charge For All Those Extra Secret Ingredients

I will make anything you want, I don’t care, as long as you bring in the recipe and don’t get angry about any extra fees.


Have Some Mercy On Them During Rush Hours

I wouldn’t mind if it didn’t seem like secret menu stuff was only ordered during busy times.


If you see the Barista Holding Lighter Fluid… RUN!

Every time someone says they have a drink off of the secret menu, I cringe and imagine setting their hair on fire.

Categories
Fast Food Features Humor

5 Discreet Ways Starbucks Baristas Mess With Rude Customers

starbucks-cup

Starbucks baristas can be some of the most cheerful, and energetic people you see in the morning, but like all customer service jobs, there are some bad days to be had.

There are annoying and rude customers that make them want to get some type of revenge, and these baristas have some discreet ways of doing that.

Tactfulness is the best thing about this list, as these acts can all be seen as honest mistakes, and usually are, though we’ll never know if it was done in malice or not.

Some of these techniques were found online, and some are old war stories I’ve heard from former employees over the years.

For some entries, you can always complain and ask for a new drink, but by then, the deed is done, and your morning is ruined.

Keep in mind, baristas probably don’t sit around and try to mess with us, they are hard workers, but everyone has a breaking point, and these are some of the ways they might let it out once in a great while.

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Decaf

HERE YOU GO SOY MOCHA #BaristaLife 👋🏻 @baristabottle

A photo posted by Barista Life (@barista_life) on

This one’s probably one of the most commonly known ways baristas mess with us. Rude customers will sometimes get decaf when they want caffeinated, and vice versa. We can pester them with, “Are you sure this is regular,” and maybe even bring it back, but at that point, they’re already in our heads.

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Mess Up Your Name

“The name is Marc, with a “c””, says my brother.

Starbucks baristas misspelling your name is the most publicized pranking on the list. While not malicious, it can be maddening to see our names so heavily butchered. Most of the time it makes for a good laugh, though.

aime-cup

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Lowkey Ruin Your Instagram Photos

starbucks-sticker-logo

This is a recent strategy that incorporates social media, and our love of taking photos of everything. When we post to Instagram or Snapchat, we want our beautiful drink to have the classic Starbucks logo in the pic. Well, when the barista wants to mess with you a bit, you might find an order sticker over the logo, pretty much killing your photo.

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Giving Receipts Against Our Will

You probably wouldn’t even think about this, but part of the robotic transaction process involves the worker at the register asking you if you’d like a receipt. Think about it, every time you’ve been there, you’ve probably been asked. Apparently, if it’s been a rough morning, they might just print it out and hand it to you, no questions asked. Now you’re just stuck with a piece of paper in your hand, thinking about the quickest way to toss it out. Minor inconvenience, but effective.

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Bitter Espresso Shots

espresso-stk-mrg

This one’s probably the worst, and if you’re not well-versed in the espresso-drinking process, you wouldn’t even think twice about it. Espresso shots usually have a 25-30 second lifespan before they go bitter, that’s why it’s suggested to shoot them right away. If that barista making your 2-shot espresso decides to hold on to it at bar for a few extra seconds, that sip is going to take you straight to Bitter City.

Categories
Fast Food

The Messed-Up Reason Starbucks Baristas Are Putting Stickers On Your Cups

starbucks-sticker-logo

Sometimes, secretly sticking it to customers can bring so much joy to an otherwise terrible workday.

You know those order stickers that are sometimes on your Starbucks cup? If you’ve ever seen one stuck right on the cup logo and thought, “Damn it! This stupid sticker is ruining my Snapchat photo!” you’re not crazy. It is ruining your photo, and it might even be done on purpose.

Reddit user bemyfuse posted a photo of sticker-covered Starbucks drinks and said:

“My petty joy is putting stickers on the siren logo when annoying teenagers order millions of fraps at once, so their instagram posts are ruined ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ it’s the little things.”

It sure is the little things that make your day, and this is genius. With everyone constantly Instagramming, or Snapchatting photos of their Orange Drinks, Pink Drinks, Frappuccinos and Passion Teas, it’s not unusual to want to take those photos with the siren logo facing out. It’s only natural. It adds to the photo, really.

You can’t even really be mad. Are you going to complain to management that your photo-op was ruined? Hell no! What kind of Taylor Swift, snake-like complaining is that?

Since everyone caught on to the blatant name misspelling on cups, baristas probably needed a new way to get us.

Who knows what else they do, but this one is great and I’m giving the barista five clapping Shias for it:

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