Samui Wining & Dining
A Winning Formula

That’s how Black Canyon keeps its customers happy at its four branches on Samui.


 

17‘Customer Delight’. These words, printed next to a picture of a steaming cup of coffee with a smiley face in the milk froth, are what Black Canyon’s website proclaims as their company goal. Well, goal achieved, one would think, by the scores of customers pouring in and out of Samui’s four branches of this popular Thai coffee house

    The success of a franchise is one that keeps not only its franchisees happy, but more obviously the end user. That’s us. The coffee drinkers, in this case. But if we had to be critical, there are several places to get a good cup of coffee on the island, including a few international brands. So why make Black Canyon your coffee house of choice as so many others seem to do? Well, there’s more to a winning-formula coffee house than just a good cuppa – a good selection for one thing. Gone are the days of a waitress asking, “Would you like tea or coffee?” Nowadays, there’s an endless selection when it comes to your choice of caffeine fix, and few venues have as vast a selection as Black Canyon. In fact, the choice is so great that you’ll have to check out the menu yourself, and it’s a pretty menu at that.

Throughout the glossy ‘catalogue’ as it should possibly be called, there are little anecdotes and stories about the page’s offerings. Read about ‘the benefits of coffee’ or ‘the origin of chocolate’. There’s a ‘tea story’ or a ‘coffee legend’ too, in case you want some reading material while you sip your steaming (or iced) cup of goodness.

      No matter your taste, Black Canyon has a drink for you – from the European style cappuccinos, espressos and lattes, to classic hot teas and plain old black coffee. And there’s a lot to be said for black coffee. “The best coffee is black as the devil, hot as hell, pure as an angel and sweet as love.” Well they borrowed the saying from a 19th century French statesman, Talleyrand. But if you fancy swaying from your regular brew, try something with an Asian twist. Now while the ‘red bean cha Thai frappe’ or the ‘red bean green tea frappe’ may not be to everyone’s liking, most people enjoy the unique flavour of Thai iced tea, with or without milk – it’s quite a bit stronger than English tea, so works well with milk for iced tea. Those avoiding caffeine might try the ‘green tea frappe’, or ‘iced green tea latte’. There’s also a wide selection of chocolate-based drinks, both hot and cold, as well as fresh fruit juices, fruit shakes and smoothies made with fruit and yoghurt. Try the honey-lime frappe for a refreshing wake-up drink.

      Now what separates Black Canyon from the other coffee houses is the brand’s great selection of not only beverages, but also reasonably priced meals. Too often coffee shops only offer a few croissants, cakes and muffins to go with your favourite coffee. But Black Canyon has a full menu ranging from breakfasts through to lunches, of both the Asian and Western variety – and a few fusion options thrown in the mix, for example, spaghetti with green curry sauce, fusilli noodles in tom yum soup and spaghetti with red panang shrimp sauce. There are soups and salads, and fresh fish dishes too. On a hot day, often the last thing you feel like is a steaming plate of food, and something light and cool is what you’d rather have – such as Black Canyon’s Caesar salad, grilled black pepper salmon salad or apple salad with crispy prawn.

      Right, so we know that Black Canyon has good beverages in the way of coffees, teas, juices and frappes, and they have a great selection of dishes, but what else feeds the constant flow of traffic through their doors? Well, there’s air-conditioning. And while few like to admit that the heat and sun that brought them to a tropical island in the first place can sometimes get a bit much, it’s a welcome relief after a few days in the sun. And whether you need to hook up to the internet for work purposes, or update your travel blog for family back home to catch up on your adventures, free Wi-Fi is always a bonus. Add to that comfy seats in a modern, pleasant surroundings and you have a typical Black Canyon store.

      And last but not least, all this comes at a price of course, but in this case, a nice price. Black Canyon serves up great food and drinks at very competitive prices, which is why you’ll not only see tourists spending their euros, but locals enjoying their offerings too.

      Black Canyon is a popular brand throughout Thailand, largely due to the fact that you know what you are getting when you go there. Each franchise is strictly regulated in order to standardise quality, both from décor, menu and food preparation as well as a service perspective. While different can be good at times, sometimes you just want what is familiar, and that’s what you’ll get no matter which branch you visit.

      Now that you have an urge for a java, where can you find a Black Canyon on Samui? Well there’s a branch in each of the main Tesco Lotus shopping centres in Chaweng, Lamai and Nathon, all along the ring-road. And there’s a fourth in Chaweng Beach Road, in the Xin City hotel complex, so no matter what part of the island you’re on, you aren’t far from a Black Canyon.

 

Rosanne Turner


 


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