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Lansing, Michigan, United States
I am a Lansing townie, lawyer, and restaurant reviewer for the City Pulse. I love traveling, reading, yoga, and baking, but my favorite hobby is stuffing my face.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Artie's Filling Station

Until I was 25 years old, I never thought I would drink coffee. I hated the smell and taste of it and, from my senior year of high school until 5 year ago I got my caffeine from Mountain Dew and Diet Pepsi.

It's embarrassing, but I drank the hell out of both of those. It's a wonder I didn't give myself the 'beetus.

I remember living in France and having my friends over for Thanksgiving (or, as it is better known by the French, "Thursday.") I knew that I needed to offer coffee and cheese, even though I hated both of them, so I bought some instant coffee granules. To the best of my recollection, all my guests passed on this offering in favor of more Beaujolis Nouveau. I was totally clueless.

When 25 rolled around, I was clocking a lot of hours working for a certain U.S. Senator from the Great Lakes State. You know him, he looks like Benjamin Franklin. I lived in Oakland County, where I didn't have any friends, so I worked nonstop. In the morning I would wake up and struggle to get out of bed, so I decided that it was time to grow up and start drinking coffee.

I started drinking lattes. Specifically, I started drinking "Grande Skinny Sugar-Free White Ligntnings with Mint." I. Am. Disgusting. These puppies were like $5 a pop and had 87 chemicals in them. The amount of coffee itself was negligible. I literally drank one of these every single day, and now I wish I had all of that money in a giant jar so I could go buy a million butternut squashes and turn myself orange from the inside out.

I don't remember what the impetus was for my abandoning these monstrosities, but I eventually did a 180 and dropped the lattes for plain black coffee. A few weeks after trying to convince everyone in the city that I was a badass, my mother's friend told me that coffee wasn't worth drinking without a little cream. She was right, and every day I have several cups with a little cream.

I have become a coffee fanatic. I'm frequently the psycho trying to track down a server before dessert comes so I can enjoy my cake with a cup of pleasantly cooled coffee. I mean honestly- is there anything better than a baked good and a cup of coffee (particularly as soon as you wake up in the morning?)

The banana bread that I have been assaulting for a week.

For weeks, I've been hearing about Artie's Filling Station. Truth be told, I'd been hearing that this dude was serious about his coffee and wouldn't take any crap. So I was intimidated and stayed away, continuing to give my Keurig, Bodum French press, and Bialetti stovetop espresso maker (THE BEST) a workout.

I realize that the stovetop is dirty. My apologies.

Last week the Grand River Connection (board member what) and Lansing Chamber held our annual 10 Over 10 awards. One of the winners was John Miller, Artie's owner. It was back on my radar and on Thursday, after cardio jump rope and before going to work, it was time. I told him that I'd never been there before and needed guidance, he suggested their Tahitian Vanilla Nutmeg latte.

You guys.
Nutmeg shavings on top.
Thank God I had gotten back into my car before I took a sip, because I literally made a keening sound. Gross word, I know, but that's what I did. It was too good. I took the lid back off and stared at it, sent a text to my bff telling her to go there, and licked nutmeg and foam off the bottom of the lid.

I can't even. . . it's not normal coffee.

By the way, I could see the vanilla beans (vanilla bean seeds?) on the sides of the cup. I'm getting grosser by the minute, but I ran my finger around the cup and licked them off. I would have eaten the paper cup if I hadn't already had my morning fiber in the form of oatmeal.

Look at those cups. Obviously cooler than I am. Oh, and they only slang whole milk, so deal with the fact that you're going to get fatter. However, it's a small cup, so just tell yourself that you're European and deal with it. Also, it was close to $6, but if that's going to stop you then just get the hell out of here.

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