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Friday, 21 March 2014

District Coffee Co. - Hip to be Square

"Hipsters ruin everything."

Plaid shirts, horn-rimmed glasses, goo-gaws of yesteryear recycled into ironic statements that, really, aren't statements because they are out to prove that they've got nothing to prove. (For further reference, please refer to Kate Beaton's comic above.) Basically, old things - a la "Dads are the Original Hipsters" are reinvented, repurposed and retrofitted - and this drives some people crazy.

Case in point: I overheard a poorly muffled utterance about this very topic at District Coffee Co. last week. Are there plaid shirts on the premises? At any given time, yes. Are old plates and spoons - the sort that your elderly neighbour when you were growing up kept as keepsakes from various locales on a display rack on the wall - comfortable among the slick and sleek espresso machine? Yes. Is the soundtrack esoteric? Of course. Does the summation of these ingredients prove, or disprove anything?

Maybe yes, maybe no.

It is unfortunate that preconceived notions preclude certain sectors of society for appreciating food and drink for what they truly are: food and drink. Nothing more, nothing less. District Coffee Co., though having been in existence for a scant few weeks, offers sweets and coffee that possess maturity beyond their years. Savoury dishes abound as well, though I've yet to try them.

A lemon meringue tart (pictured at the forefront) and a marshmallow rice krispie square (pictured at rear) are case studies in contrasts. The lemon tart comprises a scale replica of an old-school lemon meringue pie. Puckery-sweet lemon curd boasts a fragile yet study egg white crown with just a hint of toastiness. Buttery pastry keeps the whole works intact. The marshmallow square evokes long-ago camping trips and school lunches, all recapitulated in a mash-up of crunch and nostalgic goo.

An espresso macchiato is short and strong, just as it should be, and arrives boasting a "City of Wetaskiwin" spoon for stirring.  The java hails from Phil & Sebastian Coffee Roasters in Calgary, and is bright, assertive, but never jarring.

Was it relevant that rice krispies and lemon meringue could be regarded as "retro" and, therefore, ironic when juxtaposed into a modern context? That is a matter of opinion. My opinion, however, is that good food is never ironic.

District Coffee Co. on Urbanspoon


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