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Stamford's Coffeehouse

A Fine Establishment

Ahh, █████, you're back! It's been a few weeks, I do hope you're taking care of yourself. Wait here, I'll get you something. That tiramisu you love, perhaps? Splendid, do make yourself at ease, Stamford's been feeling a tad lonely without you around!
— A recent conversation I had with the establishment's owner, Mr. Robert Brow, after a little adventure forced my absence. It was good to finally get back.

As one steps out onto the pavement of Langford's Fir Street, you may see individuals ranging from tired looking professors to dignified guildsmen pass through a set of dark green doors, or sit on outside tables. As you step through those doors, the first thing that hits you is the warm smell of roasting beans and baking goods, followed by the frenzied speech of dozens of caffeine fueled minds discussing everything from business matters to scientific wonders. Walking to the counter, you look above the frantic servers rushing to complete orders, to see the words STAMFORD'S, in gold lettering, plastered onto a similarly dark green backboard.   This roughly describes the experience of entering that lovely business called Stamford's Coffeehouse, an experience I have undergone for what feels like more than a thousand times over the years. It really is a remarkable place. After all, the atmosphere is warm, the decor appreciable, the food and drink near divine to my tastes, and the company, always special and unique.  

The Place To Be For Anyone Who's Not Quite No One

From what I understand, some strange alignment of location and reputation has left Stamford's almost entirely dedicated to a specific form of clientele. Yes, plenty of more "average" individuals pop in for a drink, but it is obvious to see that many notables pay far more patronage to the establishment than would seem conventional.   For example, aside from, of course, myself, well known patrons to the establishment include the Directors of half the Departments of the Duke's University, not 2 hours journey away by rail, almost the entirety of the board of directors of the Navigators Guild, and countless artists and researchers, whenever any of such notables get to stay in Langford-on-Azure for any length of time.   Admittedly, none of us are precisely famous individuals, but it's safe to say that many of Stamford's patrons do hold some, sway, over certain worldly affairs, and we're certainly not nobodies.  

A Steaming Cup, And Something To Nibble

Of course, while I would consider the company and atmosphere to be the main cause of my patronage, I have to admit the sustenance provided does play a part. And oh, what fine sustenance! Cakes, and other sweet confections, line displays covered by glass, and served on delicate porcelain dishes that seem fit for serving royalty. So sweet, so delicate, so divine, the recipes and methods behind their creation are worth more than mere money to the curious customer with deep pockets, though to my knowledge their secrets have never left the establishment at all.   And, what would a Coffeehouse be without its coffee? Strong, black stuff, carries the day there, which more than fuels the fervent discourse taking within the buildings walls well into the night. I normally prefer mine with some milk in it, for which I get not a few odd looks from my fellow patrons, but on more than one occasion I have consumed the stronger varieties, with its beans which are more than likely to be from a magically enhanced plant, and carried a debate, argument, or other conversation until the very next dawn.
Pub / Tavern / Restaurant

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Grandmaster nnie
Annie Stein
14 Mar, 2022 10:14

It's interesting to see the coffeehouse described from a first person perspective! It was a good choice, it gives the article character and helps me imagine what sort of people frequent Stamfords. Well done!

Creator of Solaris & The Morning Realm -— On the Shoulders of Giants entry: Refugees of Mercury
22 Mar, 2022 08:58

Thanks for the nice words, and I'm glad you enjoyed it! Good to know I got some "feeling" across, I don't usually do well in that I think!

14 Mar, 2022 23:25

I have to agree with nnie, the first person perspective really gives this tavern a certain charm. Apart from that, it makes the article stand out from your other articles. In any case, I think it's good and I'm curious whether we can expect a short story from you in your world in the near future.

15 Mar, 2022 12:30

Good article! I like the use of emotive, sensory language and the use of a first person perspective.

Why not come visit the fantasy realms of Faerûn? Or a familiar future in Earth 2068?
15 Mar, 2022 14:05

I wasn't expecting a coffeehouse in the competition but it is a welcomed addition! I really love the personal feel to this, its so warm and welcoming, like a freshly brewed cup. Good luck in the competition.

Please check out my article for the Tavern Challenge! The Black Haired Dog!
15 Mar, 2022 21:23

I need that stronger coffee!!! The things I could do with that... O_O   The first person narration really paints an interesting picture, it's quite nice.

16 Mar, 2022 00:17

Dang. I should try something first person. Love every bit of this, even reading the article makes you feel homey and warmed.

The wisest person I know once called me a glorious pinnacle of human mediocrity. I feel this is more or less accurate.   (Ignore what my username says. I am far from grand, let alone a master).
16 Mar, 2022 13:39

I really love your comfy, welcoming way of describing and guiding us through the coffeehouse, introducing us to some patrons, being in general a good host.   Very well done :3

Creator, artist and writer of the science fantasy world Kingsmaker
18 Mar, 2022 09:47

Well done on this one Arch! Like others said the pov really makes it shine, and unique!

19 Mar, 2022 14:02

I really enjoyed your article. Like all the others said, the first-person perspective made the article unique, interesting, and personal. I hope to see a short story where this coffee house is in! Great job!

Check out my river challenge entry: The Flooded Scars
22 Mar, 2022 08:59

Hey Panthers, thanks a bunch, nice that people enjoyed this! And, if you want a short story, well, I suppose I've always got a few ideas rolling around in my head! ;)

20 Mar, 2022 08:38

Coffeehouses unite! It seems quite charming and the logo in combination with the first person narrative gives it a very cozy, british feeling. I am kinda curious about the narrator.

Check out my entry to the tavern challenge: Sweet Death
22 Mar, 2022 17:15

I love the language in the article! It's sophisticated, yet clear and flows well. It's a short read, but I already got the feel of what Stamford's's like. The only thing I'll say is that it's pretty rough on the eyes, design-wise. If you fill up the sidebar, or just remove it altogether, I think that'll solve the issue. Aside from that, pictures would go a long way, though I didn't feel I needed any based on how I liked the prose.   Good job!

Let us unite against the enemies of Album!
22 Mar, 2022 18:37

This feels so distinctly British (except for the Tiramisu - at least I think?). Very good job on the atmosphere, which is of course helped greatly by the POV narration. All I can say is that I would love to hear more of it - more of the decoration, the furniture, some of the patrons, the food, the drinks, everything.

If you have some time, I would much appreciate your feedback on my entry for Adventure April: Carbon Copy Paradise
24 Mar, 2022 08:15

It reads wonderfully, Arch! :D And since it is morning, I can relate to the narrative with the steaming, fragrant coffee and a portion of the lightest and tastiest piece of tiramisu.   Not often do I come across an article written in the first person, and it gives a much different experience since it becomes part of the story.   What I think could make the article feel more alive would be filling in the sidebar, e.g., pictures of whatever is served in the Stamford's. You have tiramisu and coffee — that should be enough to fill the blanks and enhance the experience.   Thanks for a lovely morning read! :D

Introducing my challenge entry, with my cat as the main character and visitor to the tavern.
25 Mar, 2022 04:14

I love the quote at the start of this article, I do hope you will expand with talking about the staff and the patrons and it what it serves, But overall this article is good!

Come check out my entry for this month's challenge: Children of the Goddess of Love
26 Mar, 2022 11:59

I really liked the fact that the place is a coffee house. The article looks rather plain with just basic layout and no pictures. However, from the text I got a good and vivid picture of the place and I feel like it is well written. I also liked the first-person view and the academic feel of the place. The description of the cakes etc. behind the glass made me want to visit the place. Not every article needs to be showy to be good and, in my opinion, you have done good job with this one!

Eternal Sage Eliza ☘
Elizabeth Earle
30 Mar, 2022 00:05

"The Place To Be For Anyone Who's Not Quite No One" I adore this sentence; your writing in general is great, very evocative. And I do love me some tiramisu. <3   For the header, try doubling the recommending dimensions and you may have less problems with pixelation - that trick always works for me.   Awesome vibes!

Feeling stressed? Need some time away from it all? Visit Lupine Bay's Shamrock Bar & Grille! Our charming coastal town will sink its hooks into your heart forever.
Sage eccbooks
E. Christopher Clark
30 Mar, 2022 00:13

I really adore the use of the "you" throughout this. Makes me feel like your narrator is speaking right to me and that I'm right there in a story. A great touch, that! And my favorite line, for some reason, is "Admittedly, none of us are precisely famous individuals, but it's safe to say that many of Stamford's patrons do hold some, sway, over certain worldly affairs, and we're certainly not nobodies."

Check out the Bekiskpan — originators of the chain mail bikini and my entry for “On the Shoulders of Giants.”
30 Mar, 2022 23:24

Aww, thanks mate! Coming from you, that really means a lot! :)

Sage George Sanders
George Sanders
31 Mar, 2022 03:13

You give a feel for how customers interact and use the space as well as who is coming and going. There is a lot of potential development for the character sitting sharing all this that might turn into something in the future too!

Read about the ancient history of the Anhult Wildlands in my Challenge article, Echoes of the Past.

Submit articles for Lavani to read by leaving a comment on her Reading List!
1 Apr, 2022 02:07

What a wonderfully rich and descriptive bit of prose. The writer clearly likes the place. The fact description of the clientele and of the place itself is all great. The only thing I think that would have helped is perhaps a menu of the different types of coffee sold, and perhaps some of the pastries if there is a local favorite, to help fill out the sidebar. (Not being a coffee drinker, but it being prevalent enough in society, i can imagine a harried professor coming in and ordering something called an "All-nighter" or something similar.

As always, it would be appreciated if you would stop by my challenge article The Storm Giant Empire and leave some feedback.   If you are looking for things to read from summer camp there is also my Summer Camp 2022 Reading Challenge.. Happy worldbuilding.