Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Strong Latte, Outpost, South Yarra

This is Outpost. St Ali's new joint within spitting distance of South Yarra station. The dictionary app on my computer defines outpost as a small military camp or position at some distance from the main force, used especially as a guard against surprise attack. Let's take it from the top:small military camp or position - I guess if it has to be one of these it would be a position. Not a sexual position, if that's what you were thinking. More of a strategic position. Anyone who gets off (if you'll pardon the pun) at South Yarra at one of the easternmost platforms will surely be in firing range of wanting a coffee.
  • at some distance from the main force - St Ali being the main force, this is some distance from it. South Melbourne to South Yarra is not a lot of distance, but it is indeed some distance.
  • used especially as a guard against surprise attack - the whole thing appears to be made of glass. That's pretty dangerous. Not just in the sense that glass is actually a liquid, and building anything out of it is precarious as a result (the walls may be slightly thicker at the bottom about 2000 years from now), but glass is also dangerous. If there were a surprise attack, the military units stationed at the Outpost could just smash one of their walls, and have thousands of glass shards at their disposal. Or, more simply, the glass walls are so clean that you could deal with surprise attackers by standing on the other side with a sword and waiting until they run into the glass and knock themselves out one by one.
Come to think of it, the place looks a bit like those controversial glass shards that were never built at Federation Square, don't they? But this is how I like my glass shards: huge, hollow, not too pointy, and filled with coffee. There's a vague triangularness to the whole thing too. It's a giant prism. Shine coffee beans in one end, and it splits up into its respective flavours at the other.
Walking in, you are surrounded by coffee equipment. The kind of things you expect to see behind the counter. Essentially, the whole building is behind the counter, which faces outwards to its attackers on Yarra St. This, for me, inspires a mixture of "I'm part of the action", "I've walked in the wrong door", and, "I'm interrupting an important experiment, I should leave." I never quite figured out which was true. There wasn't a staff only sign.

The coffee itself was, well, I never quite decided on that either. Was it excellent, or did it just taste like milk? It sure wasn't strong. I wish I could have compared it with the other guy who ordered a normal-ass latte just before me. I couldn't imagine it being less strong than the one I had.

Or maybe my imagination isn't what it used to be.

P.S. OMFG I just solved something that's been bothering me for ages. I customarily put two spaces between sentences. I'm always shocked when I read back over the blog that most of the time I've only left one space. It turns out I'm not mental: Blogger automatically changes them all to single spaces. Why does it do this?


  1. You may like to view the article at http://webtypography.net/Rhythm_and_Proportion/Horizontal_Motion/2.1.4/ for an answer to your postscript question.

  2. Thanks Luke! HTML doesn't even allow double spaces! Fascinating.. how much energy have I wasted over the years?

    (note: there were double spaces between all those sentences I just wrote in this comment. Damn.)