Inside stories of Kiwis at work

If a decaf caramel trim latte with three sugars is your go-to coffee, chances are your barista is not a fan. There's also a high chance they are messing with your order.

One Wellington coffee maker says milk is the bane of a barista's life, the art of perfectly steaming that froth is a skill that takes a long time to master.

And don't even bother to ask for trim milk: "It's more difficult to steam, the calorie difference isn't even that extreme." She admits that everyday she will use regular milk when customers ask for trim. "I hope I'm not backstabbing fellow baristas but we all do it."

A barista on Queen St, Auckland, takes a similar approach: "Sometimes I mix the blue top and trim milk together if there isn't quite enough for the coffee in one bottle."


As for the myth of putting decaf in rude customers' coffees? Both deny this, saying decaf is a pain to make.

However, the Queen St barista says she will use a single-shot if a mean customer orders a double "but in the same respect, if someone is kind and looks tired I often make them a double shot, or add extra marshmallows to their hot chocolate - being nice gets you good service".