Sunday, July 24, 2011

#016 Tastiest Way to Fight Breast Cancer

Big City Coffee is rated #016 Tastiest Way to Fight Breat Cancer, as they donate many profits to breast cancer.  The funniest part is their signature blend is called "Big Titty" and it is apparently not only a do-good cup of coffee, but also a tasty cup o' joe. They also have decaf Double D, and both blends feature a bra on the front.

Interestingly this coffee shop also has a relaxed and casual dining room. Not only can you get drinks, but you can also get a variety of food.  I will attest to the importance of yummy coffee shop food, as there were many times I ended up having to interrupt a study break for a food run. They serve their complete menu all day, and are open 6 am - 6 pm Monday-Saturday, 6 am - 4 pm Sundays. 

Down to the details, this place accepts credit cards, which is also helpful for me as I very rarely carry cash.  There was a $3 credit minimum, so your only problem is if you somehow only wanted one pastry and nothing to drink. 

Big City Cofffee obviously doesn't take reservations (what coffee shop does??) and there isn't a ton of seating, so it is more a grab and go place, or a "hope you can find a spot" place.  However, Boise has tons of parks and plenty of places to go, so even if you weren't able to find suitable seating, I am sure you would be fine.  They also have outdoor seating, which is always nice for a quick stop before the sun roasts you.  When I went this Sunday at noon, there was plenty of seating.  However, it isn't intimate, romatic seating.  You might be at a table sitting right next to another family, but it is Boise and that kind of thing is charming.

One yelper says, "the pumpkin spiced chai muffin is phenomenal," and another raves "the veggie sandwich is so good and fresh."  It is known for its cool atmosphere and easy-to-get-to location at the center of the Linen District.  I love that it has a free parking lot for customers, as it can be difficult (and typically costs money) to park near some of the other local coffee shops (Thomas Hammer and The Flying M).

I didn't even bother to look much at the menu, because I knew the selection of sandwiches would make me sad! I had decided to limit myself to a muffin because I was planning to take whatever I got with me to the movies, and a sandwich seemd a little extreme.  I am going to have to go back sometime for a sandwich -- they were all in the $5-$8 range, from what I could see.

Once you get up near the counter, you can see all the pastries in the display case, and HOLY COW they are HUGE! I don't really know how to explain how big they are.  I got a muffin, which is smaller than a scone, and it took up my entire hand. The scones wouldn't even fit on some normal sized plates, from the looks of them!

You can kinda see the tiny bit of muffin shaped bottom in the picture above.

I decided to go with the pumpkin chai muffin, based on the recommendations of other yelpers and my own personal affinity for chai.  It was delicious, and more a pumpkin chai BRICK than a muffin shape.  My favorite was the frosting.  It was also very filling...I ate half of it about three hours ago and I am still satsified and full.  It was more pumpkin-y than chai-y, but some people say chai tastes like pumpkin, so I guess it is hard to tell where one flavor stops and the other begins.  I got my pastry from the discounted bin, and it was $1.50.  I assumed it was discounted for being a day old, but didn't bother to ask.  Either way, it was delicious and a wonderful price.

I also got a 16 ounce iced chai and it was much better than my chai at the Flying M.  It tasted like I expect chais to taste.  The only thing of note was that this was a fairly sweet chai...I am still looking for the *ultimate* chai and I think I will only find one when I get a hot chai made with loose leaf tea...might not happen until winter, if it ever happens.  My chai here was $3.75.  While they didn't have chai loose leaf tea, I was excited that all the tea they did have was loose leaf, which is so much better than the standard Stash tea sold at most places.

Other things of note:
They have a bunch of daily quiches that sound amazing.  Today's features were bacon and brie, feta artichoke basil and sundried tomato, sausage feta and swiss, ham and swiss, and bacon with mushroom.  I would have totally gone for the feta, artichoke, basil and sundried tomato. 

It looked like the majority of scones/muffins/brownies/cookies were about $2.50 (but keep in mind they are GIANT).

Italian sodas were listed at $2.95.  One speciality item that stood out (if I liked coffee I would have gotten it) was the Scandinavian.  This is a creamy white chocolate mocha with real whipped cream for $2.75.  If you stay and dine in, coffee is two dollars for as much as you want.  If you are getting black coffee to go, it is 12 ounces for $1.50, 16 ounces for $1.75, and 20 ounces for $1.89.

When it came down to my very important service standard, the baristas passed with flying colors.  As a matter of fact, one woman took my order while I was in line and my chai was ready before I had even paid for it!

After my fantastic experience at Big City Coffee, I went back to my car and worked my magic.  I had brought along a travel mug and my roomier, flat bottomed purse, with the plan to bring my newly acquired goodies along with me to my matinee movie.  I dumped my drink into the travel mug, and got it so it was resting inside my bag just fine.  The muffin fit in as well, and I was ready to go see Friends With Benefits.

There was only one tiny hiccup in my plan -- I got CARDED to see a rated R movie! I thought that was pretty funny.  I also finally got a Regal card, which was long overdue.  Last time I asked about it, they told me to do it online, but this lady hooked me up with one and all it took was my name and phone number.  My snacks were perfect for the movie -- much better than an overpriced pop and some candy.

Thankfully at this movie no one validated the movie-personal-space rules, and I could put my feet up on the seats.  I LOVED FRIENDS WITH BENEFITS!  It was better than most romantic comedies I have ever seen.  Neither character annoyed me -- Mila and Justin were both fantastic.  At some points, I was almost about to cry even.  Go out and see it.  i know the story line seems played out, but they somehow managed to make it feel fresh and new. 


Lauren Hairston said...

I don't get carded much anymore, but I did have a UPS guy ask me why I wasn't in school one morning!

Looks like a great coffee shop. I love that they take orders while people are waiting in line. More places should do that!

Kelsey said...

HAHA! That is so funny!!

And I agree - if they have the manpower, taking orders in line is FANTASTIC!