It occurred to me that coffee is kind of the silly putty of the hospitality industry. It can be used to attract any desired target demographic, and it can make any desired statement. In the United States, we have coffeehouses where the spotlight is on the coffee and its preparation. They're more than willing to tap into the back-to-nature trend by featuring pourover and other low-tech methods of preparation. What adds value in the United States? Image...perception...arrogance...word-of-mouth promotion of consumer products.
In Germany, it's rare to find a service industry establishment that is devoted to anything else than serving the customer. During my recent trip, I had intended to visit a restaurant and retail store called Dallmayr. Unfortunately, I took the wrong train and got into Munich too late to go there in addition to the churches I wanted to see. Also worth noting is the elaborate WMF superautomatic coffee machine, and the fact that WMF's website advertises cups that are said to enhance the flavor of the drink. What adds value in Germany? Machines...engineering...automation, even at the expense of authentic flavor...a smooth, tidy and efficient (and occasionally uniformed) service sector.