The 7 Pretentious Notions That Gripped Dublin in 2014
I must preface this rant by confessing that I commend the companies I am giving out about that they are able to create such a strong brand and in turn positive notions associated with their brand that people will pay a fiver for a coffee, the price of a mortgage repayment for a hotel room or drop a small fortune for a meal in their establishment.
7. The Nespresso store
Look, I'm sure there is some small percentage of people out there that know the difference between a ristretto and an arpgeggio but when I see people making funny faces, ohhing and ahhing at the counter and making out they know the difference between some bean from costa rica and one from ethopia... Jaysus. As one of our writers recently said, until the naughties in Ireland we had two types of coffee, Nescafe and Maxwell House. (Disclaimer: I have a Nespresso machine from when I was going through a period of notions).
6. Drip coffee
First there were baristas, then starbucks silly sizes (why can't you just say small, medium and large), then more notions again with drinks like Tazo Chai Crème Frappuccino, now the final straw is this bloody drip coffee craze - as far as I can make out it's coffee that takes longer to make.
5. Business buzzwords
I blame the influx of tech companies for the increase in words like bootstrapping, bandwidth (what's wrong with saying I don't have time?!), big data, push the envelope and touch base.
4. Restaurants with silly ingredients
'Torn' herbs, (so you mean you chopped the fecking things up), carrot broth infused with star anise (what?) and 8 different types of classifications from gluten free to wheat free to a super food on a menu. On the flipside it's probably pretty useful if your a coeliac to be fair.
3. Hotels with silly bios
Don't get me wrong, the Marker is a lovely hotel - looks class, decent food and drink but jaysus their website bio has some amount of notions. ''Extraordinary, surprising and luxurious, The Marker Hotel is the perfect urban retreat for those who crave the unconventional... Our architecture draws on the elemental nature of the Irish landscape and combines it with a sleek urban aesthetic...''. What?
2. Fancy gin and tonics
I have friends who order the most expensive gin and tonic brands out there and while I dearly love them, I have to say I don't think they'd know the difference between the piss of some Swedish man and a fancy gin. (I am a prime offender - in my heyday of notions I used to buy Grey Goose vodka.)
1. Waiting staff who really don't give a fuck
There is one particular restaurant that happens to be beside our office so I am not going to shit on my own doorstep and say who they are, but god they are painfully hipster. I am sure individually if you were to sit down and have a cup of tea with them they are lovely, but when you go in and order you'd swear you had asked them for their first born. You get a sigh and a look that says how dare you order you chart music loving, shirt wearing, conventional bastard.
I admire business owners that go abroad, take a model from there, refine it here and take the risk of establishing a business in Ireland, so do not consider this to be a serious rant. I am just a simple man and it annoys me when people try and associate a more expensive brand with a better taste or feel when it's only really down to marketing (in my humble opinion).
As my dad says in his strong limerick accent (think more Paul O'Connell, less Rubberbandits) knocking back Tubourg (he tells me in Denmark it's the fancy beer) 'Eddie; it's all fecking branding, they're all made in the same factory, just a different label at the end''.