Friday, 18 May 2012

Friday Favourite V5: Hot Drinks With Straws

The concept is easy; at the end of every week I'm going to write down one thing I love about Korea. Last week it was beach naps and here is this week's...

I don't know if it's because I'm some tall, gangly moron, or whether this is a common problem, but I find walking while simultaneously drinking literally impossible. It doesn't matter what drink it is, or what kind of a container it's in. If I don't stop to take a sip I end up with the drink all down my top. Hence me having to stop whenever I take a sip, which is not only annoying to the person behind me who crashes into me, but it's annoying for whoever I'm with when they discover they've been chatting away to themselves for the last 10 paces. This is why having hot drinks served with straws is one of my favourite things about Korea.

I love the coffee shops over here, they all have that little something extra that would make a coffee shop really unique back in the UK, but here it's just the norm. Whether it's drawing bunny faces into the froth on top of your cappuccino, covering the floor in faux grass or serving your drink with a fortune cookie, I love the little things that they do here. I think my favourite coffee shops are 2F and the Pink Elephant in Nampo-Dong and the chain Coffine Gurunaru.

The first time we were handed our hot chocolates, with a straw by the side, we cautiously looked around to make sure we weren't making some terrible social mistake. We slooooowly dipped the straw into the drink and took a sip. And just when we had that Eureka moment of realisation that straw + hot drink = a match made in heaven, no one pointed at us or laughed, or even peered over the screen of the Ipad they're usually fixated with.

So the next time we were in a cafe and we were given a straw, we dunked it in straight away without any hesitation. At first we made the rookie mistake of sucking the drink straight up, which is unbearably hot unless your mouth is made of asbestos, But now we coolly wait, playing with our straws, until a decent time has passed and the heat is bearable.

Our love for these straws is so strong that it's got to the point where if we're not given a straw, there's a minor uproar. I've seen Tasha get seriously indignant if that hot chocolate isn't served with a straw. She was also super happy to see that the Korean equivalent to poundland, Daiso, sells these straws, so she can take this new habit home with her.

Many a time I've been ridiculed for my straw usage, why's it so wrong to drink a can of Strongbow or a bottle of Koppaberg with a straw? Where's it written that a Jagerbomb shouldn't be sipped as a long drink through a straw? Everything tastes better with straws. This may have something to do with my overly sensitive teeth and my lack of drink to mouth coordination while in transit, but I don't like to get weighed down by the negative things. On the brightside it means less backwash and perfect lipstick all the same time. It also makes sharing a hot drink easy too, and if I haven't pointed this out already, the Koreans love to share!