The Seattle Times reports a number of racy coffee stands attracting attention for their attractive, scantily-clothed female employees. At Cowgirls Espresso in Tukwila, Bikini Espresso in Renton, Natte Latte in Port Orchard, Moka Girls Espresso in Auburn, Café Lorraine in Woodinville, The Sweet Spot in Shoreline and Best Friend Espresso in Kenmore baristas are increasing traffic at their respective locations by wearing bikini tops, lingerie, thigh-highs or even fetish ensembles.
The Times narrates: In a short, sheer, baby-doll negligee and coordinated pink panties, Candice Law is dressed to work at a drive-through espresso stand in Tukwila, and she is working it.
Customers pull their trucks up to the window, where Law greets each with an affectionate nickname, blows kisses, and vamps about as she steams milk for a mocha. "You want whipped cream?" she asks, a sly smile playing on her pierced lip.
The next customer rolls up, and Law throws a long leg onto the window sill, like an indie-rock ballerina at the barre.
"Do you like my leg warmers?" she asks. "Aren't they hot?"
These baristas do leave something for the imagination. Cowgirls Espresso owner Lori Bowden says "law requires that employees cover their breasts and buttocks, so there will be no 'thong Thursday,' as some customers have requested." Bummer.
It's not just the customers who are looking to innovate the dress code. "I like the idea of Saran Wrap Saturday," says Law, a barista at Cowgirls Espresso. "Now they've got those colored Saran Wraps. Dude, they could totally make a cute outfit."
I spoke to Café Fiore manager Katrine Callahan about this phenomenon. Café Fiore has locations in Ballard and Queen Anne and provides coffee in a traditional, clothed atmosphere. Here's the interview:
WIB: "So would you ever consider enforcing this dress code at your locations?"
KC: "Um, I don't think so."
WIB: "Well how about --"
WIB: "What if --"
Callahan did say that she was consulted by a local entrepreneur about a new sexpresso stand he is intending to open in North Seattle on Aurora (go figure).
Courtney, one of the many who emailed me this story, said she's concerned that she'll be hearing a lot of "Paolo and I are going to get coffee" kind of statements from Scott in the near future. She's got a point. "Going for coffee" has certainly gained a new connotation.
Now go take a cold shower.