Ristr8To Coffee – Chiang Mai, Thailand


Ristr8To Coffee (adapted from the name ‘Ristretto’ which means a shorter espresso) is one of the most talked about cafe in Chiang Mai and probably Thailand. As a matter of fact, people in the coffee industry probably know this place as well. Reason because of the owner and head barista, Arnon is to date the only Thai that made it to the 6th place in the World Latte Art Championships in 2011, which was held in Netherlands. Although he has gotten a lot of public and media attention, Arnon is still pretty much a humble & shy guy. Graduated from Toby’s Estate of Australia in 2008, Arnon came back to Thailand to set up his cafe in 2012 after a series of  accolades during his stint in Australia, which includes the top position in the Latte Art Championship in Australia Capital in 2010.

Ristr8To Coffee is located slightly off where all the action is in Chiang Mai. However, when I visited him on a Sunday at 9am, that place is already quite packed. I was told seats are limited during peak hours. I just love the decor, and the black board that surrounds the whole cafe educating customers what they are drinking. Check out the pics below:

Entrance
Entrance
There's a little mezzanine to cater for people who love the outdoors.
There’s a little mezzanine to cater for people who love the outdoors.
Outside the cafe
Outside the cafe
Interior
Interior
Their roaster is behind
Their roaster is behind
The chairs can be joined like puzzles.
The chairs can be joined like puzzles.
Me selfie again haha
Me selfie again haha
2 baristas rushing the multiple orders. Love this shot.
2 baristas rushing the multiple orders. Love this shot.
My first cup of Ficardie. Their own blend and has a good body, medium acidity and a fruity/wine character to it. Pretty awesome blend... And of course the latte art too!
My first cup of Ficardie. Their own blend and has a good body, medium acidity and a fruity/wine character to it. Pretty awesome blend… And of course the latte art too!
Friend's cup of Cappuccino. See the symmetry and control of the latte art.
Friend’s cup of Cappuccino. See the symmetry and control of the latte art.
A request from a friend for Rilakkuma picture on it. Sometimes requests cannot be fulfilled due to peak hours.
A request from a friend for Rilakkuma picture on it. Sometimes requests cannot be fulfilled due to peak hours.
My second cup which is not on the menu. Somewhere between the Ficardie and Piccolo latte. Hence a stronger version of the Ficardie. More body and a greater finish. Love it!
My second cup which is not on the menu. Somewhere between the Ficardie and Piccolo latte. Hence a stronger version of the Ficardie. More body and a greater finish. Love it!
Waffles with blue ice cream
Waffles with blue ice cream
Waffle sticks with chocolate, jam and condense milk dips
Waffle sticks with chocolate, jam and condense milk dips
Scrambled eggs
Scrambled eggs
Haha I like this shot too!
Haha I like this shot too!
Arnon and me.
A pic with the boss and head bariosta himself, Arnon.

Rating: 4.5/5.

Taste: 4.5/5. To be honest, the food can improve a little more. But I reckon their coffee is their main draw. Their house blend is just awesome. A good balance of boldness from the Brazilian beans, acidity from the Ethiopian beans and character from the PNG beans.

Portion: 4/5. Good size.

Service: 5/5.

Ambience: 5/5. Lovely industrial decor.

Price: On average around 88baht for their house blend. Pretty reasonable for a good craft.

RTE: Definitely!

Location: 15/3 Nimmanhemin Rd, Suthep, Muang, เชียงใหม่ 50200, Thailand. Tel: +66 81 978 0471. If lost, call them and pass your mobile phone to the driver. That’s what I did. 🙂

SPECIALS: Mention ‘eatwithroy’ to Arnon and you’ll get to order the special latte which is not on the menu! 😉

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Black Canyon Coffee @ Bangkok


This is gonna be something new in my blog… No, not about writing for popular restaurants or cafe, but more about condemning them. I mean, come on, you’ve come so far, grown so big, franchised your business, cross nations, etc… at least provide your customers with the standards you portray or even close to it. Apparently, for this coffee bistro joint, it was so bad, that it spurred me to write this blog post!

I was waiting to watch my movie at level 6 of MBK (as usual) and would wanna have a good coffee to keep myself awake throughout the show. So I’ve decided to check out Black Canyon for it’s coffee and what looks like damn nice White Chocolate Cake.

Shop Front

I sat down, no one attended to me, had to put up my huge hands to catch the attention of the almost dying waiter… well he seems like that. So I placed my order of Ice Latte and White Chocolate Cake. The cake came, it was Oreo Cookies Cake. I told the waiter I ordered the White Chocolate Cake, so he changed it. The cake came, still with all the plastic wrappers around it, unwraped it, took a pic, felt the weight of the cake, and I knew I would not like it. True enough, the whole cake was very light, full of cream, and the white chocolate is only the shavings on top! It was really disappointing!

Disappointing ‘White Chocolate’ Cake

After a while, my coffee came. From the colour of the Ice Latte, I knew it would not taste good. True enough, there was no coffee taste, milk inside was bland, I was like, WTF happened to Black Canyon??? The coffee tasted like overnight coffee, mixed with more than 3/4 of water and skimmed milk. It was really bad and disappointing. It was so bad, I had ate the cakey and white chocolate parts of the cake minus the cream, and left behind half glass of the Ice Latte.

My advise to aspiring franchisors, if you cannot maintain your standards, maybe it’s a better idea for you to hold your expansion plans and work out a more detailed and extensive SOP and franchise plan.

Rating: 1/5

Taste: Horrible

Portion: Average

Price: Above Average

RTE: Are you kidding?

Location: Seriously you wanna know? Alright MBK Level 6.