The Brooklyn Paper published a story on the trend of an Australian import, the “babyccinno”, making its way to NYC. This sparked a frenzied regional print media attempt to stay relevant and became a punchline in a snarky NYMag blog post.
We've covered the babyccinno before – both for its cultural relevance (see Spruce Street listing) and the comic properties of its portmanteau – simply put, it is a macchiatto-sized child-friendly cup of steamed milk, perhaps with a dash of cocoa on top. At some point it became popular with chic Australian mums, who are always going out to coffee with baby in tow, and wanted a way to make little Andy feel like a grown-up while mummy sips her flat white and thumbs through a copy of New Idea. Seems safe enough, right? Think again, because babyccinos are ticking time bombs – some call them wasteful, some say they're dangerous, and some believe they must be stopped once and for all.
“I have one customer who says that and it annoys the hell out of me,” said Sean Chin of Gorilla Coffee in Park Slope. “It is not on our menu — which we are making an effort to stick to.”
Paul Caligiore, an Australian coffee expert says, “They interrupt workflow, create milk wastage and can be served at a dangerous temperature to a vulnerable consumer,”
The Brooklyn Paper piece continues:
Babyccinos can help coffee shops reach a whole new generation of java drinkers — and that’s not necessarily a bad thing for children, so long as they stick to decaf.
Doctors say that caffeine is not healthy for kids in large quantities, but a decaf shot of espresso contains less caffeine than a soda.
Babyccinos: Joe Camel of the specialty coffee world. Hooking unsuspecting children on a dangerous (potentially scald-inducing) path, a dark road that'll dominate their narrative through puberty and beyond, leading them right into the scoffing, eye-rolling clutches of some awful barista who'll inevitably say, “Actually, that's not on our menu.”