Coffee, the wonderfully aromatic conduit for the world’s most popular drug — caffeine — began its spread from Ethiopia in the 15th Century and never stopped. Today, coffee is enjoyed all over the world, with Finland (surprisingly) consuming more than any other country – imbibing 608.2 litres of coffee per capita.
Turkish coffee, which is served in small cups where the grounds settle at the bottom, is very thick, dark, strong and sweet. Plenty of sugar and sometimes spices like cardamom and chicory are added to produce a rich, dessert-like treat. After a guest finishes his or her coffee, a host may turn the cup upside down, allow the grounds to cool and then tell a fortune by reading the grounds.
In Italy, un caffé is a “shot” of espresso — an ounce of concentrated coffee. Although Italians drink caffé (espresso) all day long, two of the country’s national beverages, cappuccino and caffé latte, are traditionally only consumed in the morning.
Brazil’s version, cafezinho, is made by mixing hot water, finely ground coffee and sugar, and then straining the mixture through a filter. Like Turkish coffee, cafezinho is dark, strong and sweet – but not nearly as thick – and served in small cups.
During the 19th Century, when Vietnam was under French rule, fresh milk was difficult to store, so condensed milk took its place. A delightful indulgence, Vietnamese iced coffee, called cà phê sữa đá, is made by brewing concentrated coffee over condensed milk, stirring it up and pouring it over ice.
Although drip coffee is ubiquitous throughout the US, the country is often associated with the Americano, which is espresso mixed with hot water. The drink is said to have evolved during World War II, when American soldiers stationed in Italy discovered that “coffee” was just a shot of espresso. As the story goes, in order to make the drink more like regular coffee, they added hot water.
Major coffee producer Kenya has long had a specialised way of drinking coffee. Kahawa chungu, or “bitter coffee”, is a traditional drink made in brass kettles over a charcoal stove and is typically enjoyed by men, according to Reuters.
What blend of coffee do you enjoy the most? Share your favorites with us!
Source: BBC Travel
Image: The Friedman Sprout