Coffee Wars

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Every once in a while you find a place that tourists and gringos who do not identify as tourists both love.

That place is the beloved Confeitaria Colombo, a stained glass rainbow of historic awesomeness, coffee and homemade pastries on a little alley in the heart of downtown Rio.

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So awesome that Starbucks decided to move in. Three doors down. SERIOUSLY, STARBUCKS?

Confeitaria Colombo: founded in 1894. Locations downtown and in the Copacabana fort.

Starbucks: 14 locations in Rio (mostly in malls) and counting. This is the most egregious. Egregious (adj): Conspicuous, outstanding, outrageously bad.

Cost of a Confeitaria cappucino: R$7.60

Cost of a Starbucks cappucino: R$8.00

It’s COFFEE WARS!

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This is Confeitaria Colombo.

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This is Starbucks. Starbucks has a security guard in a suit.

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Confeitaria has waiters in suits. Also, a stained glass ceiling.

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Starbucks ambiance: 10x better than any stateside Starbucks I have ever seen. Note the animal rug to the left. Not pictured: Air conditioning on blast.

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Confeitaria FTW! Mirrors. Mood lighting. Woven caning chairs.  AND NO WIFI THANK GOD

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Confeitaria has a bunch of old china and artifacts on display, and delicious tins of cookies for sale.

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And history. According to Confeitaria lore, the co-founders – Portuguese immigrants Joaquim Borges de Meireles e Manuel José Lebrão – created the phrase, “The customer is always right” (O cliente tem sempre razão).

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Meanwhile, Starbucks sells recyclable fake plastic iced coffee cups.

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And a superior goodie spread to any Starbucks I have ever seen, even if they still look factory issue…  check the pão de queijo on the lower right.

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Confeitaria has homemade pastries.

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And cakes!

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And salty pastries!! To the left: deep fried prawns. Center: smoked beef tongue croquettes.

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And a bar!

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And grandma watching over us. I love you Confeitaria.

 

 

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