It was a grey and rainy Saturday – believe it or not, not had many of these in Aberdeen so far – and a visit to a coffee shop was in order. Since I was also picking up some ground coffee at MacBeans, I thought it a good idea to follow one of Ian’s recommendations and check out The Beautiful Mountain, just round the corner. I forced myself to do it, to be frank, as – despite featuring on the “to-do” list I got from Ian and generally ranking high in café reviews online, the look of it – or the name – simply didn’t appeal to me. Nevertheless, I decided to give it a go.
It was a confusing experience from the start: upon entering I found myself facing a take-away bistro and a staircase, without any signage. Common sense suggested going upstairs – where, you can either go left or right, again, with no markings on where is what. Only a coffee machine in the room on the left suggested that would be the café area, confirmed by a member of staff sitting by the door, as I gathered, on her lunch break. She got up quickly to check if there was a free table and then led the way to one – a simple process, that seemed very chaotic with how she worried about sitting me down and setting up my table. A bit too attentive, if you will, but I wouldn’t hold that against her.
Then, I waited. There was another waitress who just wandered around moving cutlery from one table to another and wiping it down, whilst the rest of the girls – three more, if I counted correctly – ran around frantically. I assumed she was new and still training, so I didn’t mind much. It was my free Saturday anyway.
I started getting a bit annoyed, however, when first I was delivered a tea (which I didn’t order) and then a main meal (as you can imagine, I didn’t order that one either). Finally, I was asked for my actual order and soon after I was delivered my soy mocha.
Afterwards, the girl who had greeted me asked if I liked the coffee; she was so nice, I couldn’t have done anything else than to agree… which now is going to make me the bad, dishonest one, saying nasty stuff about others behind their backs.
Generally, the coffee was not very good. It lacked sweetness and texture; to be honest, there was very little taste left in the mouth after every sip – taken gingerly, as the brew was simply too hot to enjoy on the spot. I believe they used natural, dark chocolate, as there were still some undissolved bits on the bottom of the cup when I finished it, but I hardly tasted any chocolate throughout. And since they probably used the unsweetened, organic soy, there was no sweetness coming from that either.
I drank it as quick as I can, as the dimness of the interior (not helped by the greyness outside), and the slightly chaotic atmosphere did not feel very inviting.
All in all: Ian, not your best shout, I’m afraid!
Verdict justification: Not very flavoursome, too hot, and set in a bit too cramped and frantic surroundings. The price does not make it any more enjoyable.