While I’ve never been shy about my affinity for coffee, I never imagined seeing myself working in a coffee shop. Not because I wouldn’t like it, just because in the past, whenever I thought about a coffee shop, I was on the consumer side of the counter, but all of that changed on Monday afternoon when I drove out to my old South Otselic stomping grounds to work with Bill and Collette McCurry at Chenango Roasters.
The weather was frightful, and with inches of snow accumulating on the roads, I wasn’t expecting to be thrown in the middle of a busy crowd, but I was wrong. “Sometimes we’re busy on Mondays, sometimes we’re not,” Bill had told me on the phone. This looked like a busy one.
The small parking lot was full when I arrived, and after finishing up some sandwiches for a couple of customers, Bill put me right to work. I cleaned up the work area and watched as the coffee shop owner showed me how to make the giant rolls he had just pulled from the oven.
The dough had been rising for a while, and once Bill took it from the bowl and placed it on the counter, he showed me how to cut the dough into tangerine-sized pieces and weigh each one to make sure that they were consistently a quarter of a pound.