Every time (yes, EVERY TIME) I’m writing (or talking) about a coffee shop, I always refer back, if not comparing, to my favorite coffee shop in Salatiga called Frame Coffeehouse. And at the same time, I keep reminding myself to write a tribute to that coffee shop someday soon, if I’m so fond of them.
I know it’s not fair, and I know that each coffee shop has their own unique concept, and I do adore each one of them, but I regret to admit that, so far, Frame is still my favorite coffee shop.
It is the place where I used to go to find solitude.
It is where I used to spend hours and hours writing my undergraduate thesis–undisturbed. (I think I put them in my ‘Acknowledgement’…)
It is where I could feel eager to come and know for sure that I’d be welcomed there with hospitality.
Sometimes I wonder, though, whether I’m getting biased in this, for I’ve known the owner and one of the former barista before I knew the coffee shop itself.
Wait, I don’t wanna give you the idea that they and I are close or BFF or something like that. The owner is my senior in college, while the former barista and I studied in the same faculty, and to call them my BFF or something like that is not right, I guess. But I can say that we’re on a good term.
I know for sure that whenever I go to Frame, mas Widhi, the owner, would greet me nicely. (FYI, “mas” is the formal way in Indonesia to address an older guy–whether they’re relatives or strangers.)
I think that would be one point for the hospitality. The last time I went there, most of the waiters and baristas have been replaced, but they’re really nice, either to me or other customers.
When we entered the coffee shop, you would see plenty of seats and coffee tables. My favorite spot is at the corner near the bar, where they put red comfy sofas (and somehow I like to imagine the sofa similar to the ones I used to see in the TV series Friends).
And just like the name, “Frame”, they have a small table near the pond (yes, they have a pond, too! Nice decoration, isn’t it?) full of frames with photos in it–photos of their customers, of friends and even their own waiters and baristas–as well as plenty of frames on the wall. Oh, and one digital frame in the room where the baristas brew the coffee.
If you wanna order your drinks, you should go into this small room where the baristas usually brew our drinks, and they always greet you enthusiastically before they asked for your order. On the wall, they put this blackboard where they wrote the menus down beautifully, but eligible as well to be read. Now, this is probably one of the best part.
If there’s one thing that I cannot find yet in any other coffee shops I’ve been to, including Starbucks, Coffee Toffee, Excelso, and other local coffee shops I’ve reviewed here, is the wide choice of coffee that you could have in your coffee. Most of other coffee shops offers blended coffee, hot coffee, black coffee, or frappuccino, but most of the time, they use Robusta or Arabica coffee to brew this. And when you want to have something unique like Javanese coffee, or Balinese coffee, you could only have your coffee black. Not fun.
One thing that makes Frame unique and special to me is that, I could still have a Jamaican coffee, or coffee latte made from Sidikalang coffee beans, coffee beans from the Northern part of Aceh, Indonesia (read about Sumatran coffee here). One thing that they would always ask you after your decide your choice of coffee is, “Which coffee bean do you wanna have for your coffee?” They have varieties of Indonesian coffee beans, like Balinese coffee bean, Mandailing coffee bean, Javanese coffee bean, Blue Lintong, and some many other. And they still have Arabica and Robusta coffee, imagine that.
Oh, they grind their coffee, btw, unlike most other coffee shops which rely heavily on coffee machines to brew their coffees. Cool, isn’t it?
One of the hospitality they provide is when a non coffee-addict comes to the place and confused of which coffee beans he/she’d want for his/her coffee, they always offer you with plenty of suggestions. “Do you want it strong?” And they always ready to explain to you how each coffee bean would make your coffee different.
Really, I love that place.
They also have teas and chocolates, though. They use Dilmah tea, and most of the times I visit there, I never forget to order a cup of Hazelnut tea–probably one of my favorite tea, other than black tea. They have a variety of menu for the teas and coffees as well, and again, they are always glad to explain what is a Milkconut, or Breakchox (these two are categorized in the Chocolate menu), as well as offer you plenty of suggestions for your drinks. I sometimes come to them and simply say, “I want a cup of hot chocolate. But I want it sweet and not too thick.”
And–I hope they don’t mind me writing this–sometimes, I would choose which glass or cup that I want to use for my drinks, as long as the place is not too crowded yet, or they are not too busy.
One last, but not the least, thing that I love from this coffee shop is that it’s a great place to hang out with your friends. They provide magazines for you to read, although the choices may not vary too much–don’t forget that it’s not a library–and they have some games for you to play, such as card games (they have Uno cards!) and monopoly. All you need to do is ask. But when it’s crowded, you might have to wait for the cards. My friends and I usually prefer to bring our own cards. We once played Othello there.
Oh, have I told you that they have a wi-fi connection and an LCD TV as well?
P.S. The last time I visit Frame Coffee Shop, which is about a week ago, I asked mas Widhi for photos of Frame, and he gave the photos to me right away. I told him already that I plan to write about Frame in my blog, but it took me so long to actually–and finally write it. I guess I was just confused about how I’m going to write about it. And I kinda scared that what I write would not precisely express how much I favor this place. I hope this suffice, though ;)