Posted in Kafevend Blog

It is perhaps easiest to get across how much more in tune with coffee the Italians are than us with one little fact: What we call an espresso, to them, is "un caffe"- coffee. That's right- that tiny shot of concentrated coffee we might hazard to sip on occasion, to them is standard fare.

<<Warning, warning, sweeping generalisations inbound>> Italians prefer to drink coffee at their favourite bars, even going so far as to have a favourite barista ( an individual who serves coffee at such an establishment). When going to a bar is out of the question however, most will use something known as a Moka, a stovetop brewer, to make their own coffee at home. They often do so in the morning, and the breakfast brew they make is typically a milky one- and the only milky coffee they will probably have that day, as they like their coffee black after lunch or dinner.

Coffee arrived in Britain and Italy only a few years apart in the middle of the 17th century and became popular in both countries, with large numbers of coffee houses springing up around the nations. However, the British drink of choice was set to change when Queen Anne, the wife of King Charles II, brought tea with her to England when Charles reclaimed the throne. Tea quickly became the drink of choice amongst aristocracy, eager to conform to the Royalty's preferences. Coffee remained more popular amongst the lower classes for a time, but by the middle of the 18th century, tea drinking became widespread with the large quantities of tea and sugar that were imported into Britain.

These days, whilst tea remains the favourite national beverage in the UK, coffee has undoubtedly regained its popularity and the rapid growth in Italian style espresso bars confirms its growing status and its move away from lower quality instant.

by Kafevend

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