Five Terms Angelenos Need To Know To Order Dunkin' Donuts Coffee

Cue the huge lines... glad I don't live around the corner anymore...
Dear Los Angeles:

Congratulations! You are about to (re-)embark on your Dunkin' Donuts experience. Camp Pendleton was nice, if you had access, and Barstow's a nice stop on the way to Vegas, but now Dunks is coming to the beating heart of L.A., opening on 12th and Wilshire in the People's Republic of Santa Monica on Sept. 2. More are coming, including here in Orange County, so it's time to see whether it will take off, or fizzle like Krispy Kreme.

I have bad news for you, though: you have to learn how to order coffee. See, there are no condiment stations at Dunkin' Donuts (except for that disgusting travesty of a Dunkin' Donuts in Penn Station, the shame of the entire chain). You tell the person taking your order how you want it, and there's a well-known jargon, as well known as In-N-Out's secret menu.

As a loyal, expatriated son of New Jersey, where Dunkin' Donuts has held total sway since I was a small child, I grew up speaking Dunkies' jargon, and since I love their coffee with a nostalgia only understood by Californians separated from their In-N-Out, I order it whenever I can. (I can take or leave their doughnuts, though; I actually prefer the doughnuts from the Cambodian Doughnut Cartel, except for the French crullers.)

Here, then, is how you order coffee in a Dunkin' Donuts. Don't argue: millions of people from Maine to Maryland cannot all be wrong, because, well, we're from the East Coast and we hate to be wrong.

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5 Other Orange County Coffee Roasters You Need to Try

Photo by Cleo Tobbi

It seems as though you hear about a new coffee shop opening and adding to the world of latté art and vegan scones everyday. However, as hip and prim as they are, not many of these joints actually roast their own coffee. That's no fun.

Here's a list for you of the places that do. For these guys, getting from coffee berry to cup involves hand-picking, manual roasting and no shortage of attention and care. Yes, yes there's Portola at the OC Mix and Kéan Coffee too, and they're great, but here's to the little guy in no particular order.

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Coffeebar Byul: OC's Most OCD Coffee Shop

Courtney Hamilton
Nice, white space with everything in its place

By Courtney Hamilton

Husband and wife Jae-Ho Synn and Jin Sun Ahn talk about coffee and tea as if they were the very nexus of art and science. Synn drops words like "manual agitation" and "calibration" when describing brew methods at Coffeebar Byul in Irvine, while Ahn refers to the shop's drinks as her art. But whether they're the results of science or art, the drinks at Diamond Jamboree's newest coffee shop are developed with fanatic attention to detail.

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Paradise Perks, Irvine's Coolest Coffee Shop, Closes Because of Noise Complaints; A Eulogy and a Rant

Photo by Kristine Hoang
Bye :(

As of June 22, 2014, Paradise Perks, the best coffee shop in the City of Irvine has closed its doors. Why? Was business poor? Was foot traffic not enough? No. Paradise Perks closed for the most stereotypical Irvinian reason ever: Its Wednesday night open mics, which ran from 7 to 11 p.m., attracted too many noise complaints.

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Caffè Bene, South Korean Coffee Chain, To Open in Irvine

Flickr User Chantelle
Korean Starbucks?
A reader e-mailed me this yesterday:

"Since you had the scoop on Burntzilla coming to the Trader Joe's shopping center, I'm wondering if you know what might be going in the space across the street that used to be Seattle's Best Coffee? The Quizno's that was next door to that just closed as well and my daughter said both areas are being cleared out. Any scoop?"

I told her I didn't know, but I aimed to find out. So I got a hold of the leasing manager at Heritage Plaza and he revealed that they signed a lease with Caffè Bene to take both spaces.

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Jeff Clinard, Former Portola Coffee Lab Wonk, Opens Bear Coast Coffee In San Clemente

Dave Lieberman
Come to me, my caffeinated baby...
Anyone who went to Portola Coffee Lab after they opened their cafe in the OC Mix in Costa Mesa knows Jeff Clinard. He was as much a fixture there as Jeff and Christa Duggan, the owners; he presided over the place much of the time, and was one of the friendly, approachable faces to what was an overwhelming paradigm shift in how coffee is made.

Suddenly, he disappeared. Clinard lives in San Clemente with his young family, and wanted to stay a little closer to home. He resurfaced with his own brand, Bear Coast Coffee. Like Portola, Bear Coast is starting from a tiny rented space inside another business. In Portola's case, it was Layer Cake Bakery; Bear Coast is inside the Cellar on Avenida Del Mar.

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Starbucks' La Boulange Pastries: The Most Disgusting Breakfast On Earth

Dave Lieberman
Starbucks has always had crappy pastries. Their scones have always been dry; their doughnuts have always been leaden; their much-vaunted hot breakfast sandwiches taste like salty cat tongue and rubberine egg inside a miniature bedroom pillow three weeks overdue for a wash. The pastry case has always been the breakfast of last resort for bleary-eyed business travelers on autopilot, purchased in airports only because it's better than the spooge served on board the aircraft.

They've outdone themselves this time, though, with the co-option of the La Boulange name, a small chain of decent-but-nothing-special bakery-cafés in San Francisco. Starbucks bought them out for $100 million a year and a half ago, in the hopes of revitalizing their quick-service food options.

It didn't work.

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Caffeine and Coiffure at Platinum Brew in El Modena

Dave Lieberman
"ESPRESSO!" screamed the ubiquitous tall flag on a curved pole as I headed east on Chapman, intending to stop for a cup of liquid charcoal at the Fourbucks in El Modena after dropping my daughter off at school.

Quick left . . . okay, where's the espresso? It's not nice to hide espresso from the desperate and undercaffeinated, especially not when it advertises coffee by Kean.

Another sign as my truck bumps over the driveway lip: "LOCATED INSIDE SALON."

That's right; not content with having once sprouted delicious Korean dumplings in liquor stores, fantastic burgers in gas stations, and unbelievable backyard barbacoa, Orange County has sprouted a great coffee shop in a nail salon.

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French Coffee Costs $9.60 If You're An Asshole, $2 If You're Nice

Flickr User Yen Huang Yong
I wonder how this'd go down here..

At a café in Southern France, your coffee's going to cost a lot more if you're an asshole. The menu at Petite Syrah in Nice lists "un café" for seven euros ($9.60) but a "Bonjour, un café, s'il vous plait" at only 1.40 euros ($2.00).

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Third-Wave Coffee Is Killing Itself

I love great coffee; there's something about the first aerated slurp of a truly great cup that suffuses my body with relief beyond the assuaging of my insistent caffeine addiction. I seek out the great when I can, but I am sufficiently dependent upon coffee that, should I need to, I will drink the chemical-laden sludge that oozes forth from the three-in-one spigot at the gas station.

There's one place I won't go anymore, though, and that is the so-called third-wave coffee shops, the new generation of coffee bars with patent machines and a heavy concentration on knowing exactly which patch of steep, shady, equatorial land the coffee beans came from.

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