The Pinto Bean: The Coffee Bean



By Matthew KoBY JASON PINTO — STAFF WRITER AND FOOD CRITIC

 

As a regular consumer of coffee, quality matters to me, and when I venture to purchase a cup of coffee from one of Danville’s selections, I want that cup to be worth the trip! Recently, a new coffee shop opened next to Guadelahill.

Sweet Beans n’ Things opened this year and serves coffee and frozen desserts, which isn’t the best combination. It is a bit confusing. Coffee shops and ice cream shops serve different purposes. If you go to Sweet Beans, you probably would not buy both coffee and ice cream, you would go for one or the other, and because it doesn’t serve pastries, you will be missing an important part of the coffee shop experience if you go here for coffee.

I think the name is silly, and the name of a coffee shop is crucial. When I had to tell people the name of the place I was going to it was clear they thought the name was silly also.

The location is dreadful. It is difficult to find and much further from campus than the Hub or Plank. It is also in the same building as a Subway, so it has that distinct Subway smell, you know what I am talking about.

I went with my photographer Matthew Ko, Quinn Pritchett, and Benjamin Hadlock on a Saturday morning. Walking in, there were only three other people there, but we waited at least five minutes until we could order. A slow coffee shop is almost an oxymoron.

I ordered an array of drinks and to get a full scope of their offerings.

Their black coffee tasted like dish water. I’m not sure what was going on but I felt like I was in the Twilight Zone or something. My friends tried it also and also thought it tasted like hot water. How is this place still in business?

I hoped their machine was malfunctioning or the barista forgot to put coffee in the machine and waited for the lattes.

Quinn was excited to try the caramel apple latte, but upon his first sip, responded with an “Eww… That’s gross.” I tasted it and it tasted like a candle you would find at Walmart around the holidays.

Their pumpkin spice latte tasted like a cheap flavored creamer you would put in coffee. Repulsive.

The cappuccino tasted like toasty milk, but was at least palatable. We also got a smoothie which in this place’s dictionary means a fruit drink with poorly blended ice, but the flavor was alright.

Matthew Ko gave some good insight on coffee shops, “If a coffee shop wants to be successful in this day and age, it needs to have latte art. People need to be able to go there and post it on Instagram.”

I recommend this place either get their act together and learn how to make coffee correctly, or transform in to a full service ice cream shop. Right now, they are getting crushed in the coffee game, and there is no reason to go there instead of the coffee shops closer to campus. One, sad coffee bean out of five.


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