I spend quite a bit of time on travel forums, and I also read food blogs.
One thing that I see often is discussions on coffee - either people asking about how to order their favorite kind, or mentioning about new coffee shops opening (usually in Paris). And although I have quite a bit of respect for some of the writers, I get the distinct feeling that when it comes to coffee, they just don't get it. Of course, it doesn't help than many of the food writers are North American or Australian, and come from a culture that drinks coffee all day every day by the big milky cupful.
That isn't how a Frenchman drinks coffee. A big milky cup with breakfast, then a petit noir after lunch and maybe dinner, and that's it. He may drink a small cup of coffee instead of having a glass of wine in a social situation. If he is on holiday he might stop mid-morning or afternoon and have a coffee and a petit gout, but rarely will he have a cappuccino or frappuccino, and I imagine if you offered him a gingerbread latte he would drink it - once - as a cultural experiment, whilst thinking that foreigners are weird.
Coffee in France is treated as a digestif. Many French people would no more drink coffee all day than they would drink cognac or calvados all day. That's the way they grew up, and the coffee they drink is the coffee they like for the purpose they drink it. Just because it isn't what you drink it isn't "bad", it's different.
And this is the point of my little rant. Coffee is part of the food culture and deserves to be regarded as such. You wouldn't say that French steak is bad just because it is served rare, nor would you complain because French bread isn't like Tip-Top, WonderBread or Tescos own brand, so don't complain about the coffee.
will be drinking something cold and alcoholic.
If you want to know the articles that offend me so much, read this, this or this. And if you really want to offend me, call yourself a barrista. You'll probably get called something else.
Something that starts with W.