In some places, like Venice, there is an intriguing custom literally called “suspended coffee”, unique to the city of Naples. The concept of the “suspended coffee” is of having a cup of coffee at the bar and in addition to paying for the coffee you just drank, you also pay for another cup of coffee , which can later be drunk by a person who is who is less fortunate.
In Italy, coffee is a very important product and an extremely common beverage amongst the people. Many Italians drink at least one cup of coffee every day. Its flavour is bitter, strong and decisive, but when savoured with care, its aroma is roasted, sweet, acidic and fruity.
Preparing coffee in Italy has its base in very old tradition and you can choose to drink coffee at home, at the bar, alone or in company. The strong and intense flavor are one of the characteristics of Italian coffee. For some people it may be a bit too strong, but there are various ways to have Italian coffee, once you get to know them and find the one closest to your liking.
The aroma of coffee, is usually the first delightful smell in the morning when you wake up, it is often drunk at home prepared with a coffee maker (the coffee maker is an appliance with which coffee is made at home in Italy, which is also called “moka”). The coffee that is prepared at home can be had black, with a little milk (cold or hot) or with a little sugar (usually half a teaspoon up to a full spoon of sugar). The morning coffee with its strong flavor is very important to Italians. It serves to wake one up and charge you up for the day. Coffee is something that cannot be missed in the mornings. To be sure to wake up to its aroma, some people put the coffee beans in the coffee maker the night before, leave it on the stove overnight so as not to waste time in the morning.
Nowadays, there are electronic coffeemakers that are activated automatically with a timer for you to wake up to the aroma of coffee from the comfort of your bed without having to get up to turn the coffee pot on. Another important aspect to drinking coffee at home is the “cup”, in which you drink it in. In Italy there is a lot of attention paid to coffeeware where people love to collect items that are also nice to look at.
For people who prefer to have their first cup of coffee out of their homes, Italians often go to a place called the BAR. You will see one of these Bars at every corner in Italy. There are various types of BARs, some very old and elegant, others more modern and informal. There is a BAR to suit every taste. The coffee at the BAR is creamy and has more of an intense flavor than that prepared at home, which is less strong. Italians love to go to the BAR where they can have a cup of coffee quickly at the counter or sitting at a table while eating a piece of cake. Breakfast, therefore, is the favourite moment for Italians to drink a cup coffee. During a workday many take a coffee break between 10:00 and 11:00 perhaps with a friend or a colleague. Coffee machines are also present in the workplace or you can choose to take a short walk to the BAR. In these breaks it is customary to offer coffee to people with whom you share a few moments of your break with, and then, the next time, you will notice the favor being returned.After the mid-morning break, Italians are used to having coffee after lunch, between 14:00 and 15:00. Coffee is had at all times. However considering its high caffeine content, many choose not to consume coffee from 17:00 onwards. it is said in Italy for health reasons it is better not to exceed 3 cups of coffee a day.
Italians love the BAR and, having a cup of coffee at a BAR can be a wonderful experience for tourists who visit Italy. Italians go to the BAR for various reasons: the coffee at the BAR is better than what you can prepare at home; you can order cappuccino’s and various other types of coffee and have a cake or a croissant to go with it; you can relax, let yourself be pampered by the waiters and meet up with friends. Italians love this ritual of drinking coffee, it is a way of sharing. To share a moment of their break time , relaxation, pleasure, and exchange a few words, or time to yourself for reading the newspaper. Often, when a man wants to meet a woman and wants to express his interest subtly, what he does is invite her to have a cup coffee. On these occasions, drinking a cup of coffee together can be an opportunity to get to know each other better … a starting point.
A cup of coffee at the BAR is always shared willingly, it is a small price to pay and people do it with pleasure (the cost of coffee can range from 1 euro to 2 euros in the most beautiful and ancient bars. In some places, like Venice, a cup of coffee can also cost 5 euros). There is an intriguing custom literally called “suspended coffee”, unique to the city of Naples. The concept of the “suspended coffee” is of having a cup of coffee at the bar and in addition to paying for the coffee you just drank, you also pay for another cup of coffee , which can later be drunk by a person who is who is less fortunate. Coffee, today, is affordable and the custom of suspended coffee is disappearing. However, in order to remain faithful to this tradition, the use of suspended coffee has been reintroduced and has taken on a different form compared to the past. Nowadays, when you go to the BAR for a cup of coffee tradition says that this cup of coffee was offered by the person before us, so that everyone can drink their coffee with pleasure, without the thought of paying for it, but with the joy of sharing this pleasure with others. When it is time to pay, you are not only paying for your coffee, but you are offering coffee to the person who will come to the bar after you. Warm chit-chats with affection. In Italy it is said that in order for coffee to be perfect it must include the 3 C’s (Caldo Chiacchierato e Con affetto).
The basic experience of coffee is that in which it is tasted in its purity, in a smallcup. The coffee fills half the cup. If the amount of coffee is lesser, it is called a short (corto) coffee (in Italian); and more than half the cup is called long (lungo) coffee. You can order your favorite type coffee at the bar. Simply ask for a cup of “coffee”, and if you would like a “short” or “long” coffee, you will have to ask the barista specifically. The coffee cup is hot, to keep the coffee warm and to enhance its flavor.
This is why the cups are usually placed on top of the coffee machine. The cups in which coffee is served are small, in order not to disperse the heat and aroma of the coffee. In bars, coffee is stored as beans and ground into powder just before it is served. This allows the aroma of the beans to keep its intensity and fragrance for an experience full of flavor. The most authentic coffee experience involves tasting it pure, bitter, and without milk. You can sweeten it with a little sugar as too much sugar and sweetness will overpower the coffee. Coffee can be had with a little milk, but this is a different way to drink it which we is described below.
It is important to know that not all coffee is the same. Many elements contribute to defining its flavor. The mixture, the type of coffee and how its roasted ; the water with which it is prepared; the coffee machine and, the temperature of the cup in which it is served. These varying elements mean that every time you drink a cup coffee it is a different experience from the previous one, even if you drink it in the same bar every day. The mixture is the main element that determines the taste of coffee. The basic taste is bitter, but its taste remains in the mouth for a long time and after drinking it, all the nuances of its taste are felt. To get the most out of coffee, many bars offer customers a glass of water to drink before enjoying coffee. In fact, water is used to clean the palate for the cup of coffee. Next time you have coffee in Italy, try paying attention to its flavors and note the woody and bitter aromas of roasting or the hazelnut and chocolaty or fruity and slightly acidic tones. The advice is to try various bars that offer other mixtures this way you can find your favorite mixture and have it regularly.
Another aspect that belongs to the tasting of coffee is that in some bars along with coffee and water, customers are offered a biscuit or a piece of chocolate to be enjoyed before or after coffee. You can choose to eat the chocolate or the biscuit first so as to keep the aroma of the coffee in your mouth or you can choose to eat it after coffee to dampen the bitter and decisive taste.
In central-southern Italy sometimes, after lunch, they serve a type coffee called the “correct” coffee, which is coffee with aniseed liqueur.
Coffee and milk | Cappuccino and alternatives
Another type of Italian coffee that has become famous all over the world is cappuccino. A cappuccino is made by pouring coffee in a large cup, and then filling it with hot foam from steamed milk. A cappuccino is a fantastic way to savor the taste of coffee and milk, with its warm and enveloping taste. Cocoa powder can be dusted on the foam of the cappuccino. A cappuccino costs between 1.50 and 2 euros.
The foam should be warm and silky. When it is whipped with too much hot steam the milk is very hot and the milk froth is not creamy and contains large air bubbles. In this case the cappuccino is not very well done. The cappuccino is drunk for breakfast or mid-morning or perhaps with dessert.
You can may see alot of people in Italy drinking cappuccino for lunch or dinner:, but you will never see any of the Italians drink cappuccino after mid-morning.
An alternative to the cappuccino is the Marocchino or Mocaccino. It is a small cappuccino or a cup coffee with milk in a small cup, also sprinkled with a bit of cocoa powder. The Marocchino is ideal for a quick break, for those who want a less strong and decisive flavor than that of coffee. The Marocchino can be drunk in a ceramic cup or in glass glass cup, in the case of the latter it is called vetrino.
The price is around 1.50 Euros
- A specialty worth trying is from Turin, and is called “bicerin. ” Any ‘bicerin’ had outside of Turin is considered an imitation.. The bicerin is famous throughout Italy for its goodness. Bicerin is a drink made of chocolate, chocolate liqueur, coffee and cream … a real treat which is too good to be true.
- Recently throughout Italy, the ‘cosiddeto’ (literally so-called) has seen a rise . It’s a sweet, and cold, coffee served with icecream that is consumed in summer as an alternative to coffee. It is delicious but also very sweet and sweeter …
- You can find it in the bars and see behind the counter as it goes around in the car that prepares it.
- The price ranges from 2 to 5 euros depending on the size.
- In Italy, the love for coffee is great, there are famous coffee flavoured chocolates which is coffee for in the pocket. This way you always have good coffee handy. They are produced by Ferrero, the same brand that produces Nutella.
- Coffee is also the basis of a delicious Italian dessert which is famous all over the world: tiramisu. Tiramisu is a cake with biscuits soaked in coffee with cream made from egg whites and mascarpone.