It is no secret that this golden beverage is what keeps the BUas community running. While there may be over 30 coffee machines scattered around campus for students to get their daily fix from, not all of them are made equal.
That is why I, Cashelle, a self-appointed coffee aficionado, along with my coffee crew, have made it our mission to find the best cuppa joe for your euro in each building on the BUas campus. Our first victim, uhm...I mean location, was the Frontier Building, which houses Logistics, Games and Media. (As a 4th Creative Business student, I can confirm that the assignments and presentations created in this building are powered by the magic of coffee beans.)
To kick things off, let's take a look at the sacred tasting rules:
To keep things fair, we decided that we will taste the same two drinks when searching for the best coffee in each building, and to avoid waste, we will try coffee from each of the different types of machines, as opposed to trying coffee from every machine on each floor. After asking students all around campus, we found that black coffee and cappuccinos were the two most commonly purchased drinks. When judging the coffee, we are looking at the price, strength and overall taste of each drink and giving each drink a rating out of 5.
Before we take a look at how the coffee in location 1 fared, I have to give a shout-out to the team at the Coffee Corner in the Frontier building cafeteria. When asking students what their favorite coffee was in Frontier, most answered that the coffees made by the ladies in the Coffee Corner were the best, because nothing beats a handmade drink served with a warm smile.
Okay, let's get to business. I, together with the coffee crew tasted a total of 8 beverages in the Frontier building. From asking people, we had the highest expectations for the machine in the Innovation square and the lowest expectation from the machine at the back of the second floor.
Round 1: Innovation Square
The coffee machine in the innovation square is by far the most popular, and well-known machine. With each of the coffee crew having purchased coffee there before, and being happy with our purchase, we were all surprised by the results of the tasting.
Round 1, contender number 1: Black Coffee
The first black coffee of the day came in at 1.40 €, the highest price point for a black coffee. This cuppa joe was a good one. It was well rounded on flavour and less acidic than others of the day. If anything, it was still a bit weak, and the team all felt that it wasn't worth the price point.
For price in comparison to flavour, it gets a 3-star rating.
Round 1, contender number 2: Cappuccino
The innovation square is one that most of us know and like, so it was surprising to find that it tasted just like warm milk. Having had high expectations, the coffee crew and I felt disappointed in our first cappuccino of the day. We all agreed that we would rather buy a black coffee and add our own milk. When it came to rating, there were mixed results, with the highest rating given, being 3-stars and the lowest 0.5 stars. Overall, this milky cuppa joe gets 1.75 stars, with everyone agreeing that it was not worth the price of 1.50 €.
Round 2: First floor
Off the bat, the pricing for both the black coffee and cappuccino was perfect for a student budget, coming in at 0.70 € each. Unfortunately, the positive comments about these cuppa joe’s start and end with the good price tag.
Round 2, contender number 1: Black Coffee
When going in for a sniff of our second black coffee of the day, we were greeted with the smell of burnt coffee, and not so enthusiastically welcomed the taste of watery coffee. Needless to say, this cuppa joe got a 1.5 rating out of 5.
Round 2, contender number 2: Cappuccino
With things not getting off to a great start, the tasting went from bad to worse, with the cappuccino being described by the crew as, “there's an absence of flavour” and “It tastes like when you put water in a cup where coffee once was and drank out of it”. Unsurprisingly, the first-floor cappuccino received a 1-star rating.
Round 3: Second floor
Again, both of the contenders came in at 0.70 €. When purchasing our coffees, there seemed to be technical problems with the machine when making the cappuccino. This bad omen should have given us a sign of what was to come… (cue the dramatic music)
Round 3, contender number 1: Black Coffee
When going in for our first sip, we were greeted with the smell of watery coffee and a hint of fish. Yes, you read that right. I don’t know about you, but fish is not something that I like associated with my coffee. The taste of this cup of joe was described as, “gas station coffee”, and “burnt old coffee”. While there was a bit of fishiness in the air, this black coffee narrowly beat out the black coffee on the first floor, with it receiving 1.75 stars.
Round 3, contender number 2: Cappuccino
You would assume that things couldn’t get worse after fish-scented coffee, right? I’m sorry to tell you that it can, and unfortunately for us, it did.
When going in for a sniff and a sip, the crew knew something was up. We had the unexpected, but nice surprise of the cappuccino smelling like hot chocolate. Excited to taste, our palettes were greeted by watery hot chocolate water. The best description of it came from Ted, our Head of Design in publishing, and a member of the coffee crew, “It tasted like watery chocolate milk, meets watery coffee, meets milky cappuccino, meets even more water, and all of that being cold”. Surprisingly, this cuppa wasn't the worst thing that we had tasted, but we gave it 0 stars as it wasn’t what we paid for. And while not the worst drink, it was definitely not something we would want to have again.
Round 4: Third floor
Ah, our last round of tastings! At this point, the coffee crew and myself were pumped up on caffeine. Our hands were a bit shaky and everything seemed worthy of a giggle. With a disappointing tasting so far, we had high hopes for the third floor, and I am happy to say that it did not disappoint! For our fourth and final round, we tasted coffee from only one machine, as the first coffee machine, the one by the curved staircase, was out of order. (I’ve been told that it's been this way since the beginning of time, and that the coffee tastes like a paper cup)
Round 4, contender number 1: Black Coffee
I’m happy to report that there was no whiff of fish with this cuppa! Our last black coffee, which was 1.40 € smelt and tasted like coffee should. It was stronger than the other black coffee contenders and received a 3.6 out of 5 stars. It was most worth it at the higher price point.
Round 4, contender number 2: Cappuccino
I am so relieved to say that out of 4 cappuccinos, we finally had one that tasted like what we ordered! The last and the best was a good balance of milk and coffee and the crew agreed that we would all be purchasing from this machine again. It received 4 stars out of 5.
If you have stuck with us through this article, firstly, thank you- you must love coffee as much as we do. Second, I’m sure that you can guess the winner and loser here.
Our overall winner for the best coffee machine in Frontier building is, mental drum roll, the coffee machine at the back of the third floor! Both offerings were delicious and had a fair price for the quality. All we can say is that Games have got it good!
The worst coffee machine in the Frontier building, in our opinion, was unsurprisingly the one on the second floor at the back. From the bizarre aromas to the watery and unexpected flavours, this is a machine that we will be avoiding from now on.
Well, that sums up our first Coffee Campus Hunt. We hope that you enjoyed this tasting journey and that you give the coffee on the third floor a try. If you do, let us know what you think, and which coffee is your favorite. If you want to join in on our next tasting, let us know by emailing email@example.com
We will be back soon with the findings of our next adventure, the best machine coffees in the Horizon buildings.