“Prendiamo un caffè?” (Fancy a coffee?)
It is a well-known fact that the Italians love their coffees. They have also invented a coffee culture that is unparalleled to any other place in the world.
The coffee drinking habits and culture of the Italians may not be easy for foreigners to understand (is it really odd to have a cappuccino or caffé latte during the afternoon?), but these habits are considered as the norm in Italy.
As the saying goes, when you are in Rome, do as the Romans do. When in Italy, drink coffee as the Italians do (this will save you from more than a few curious stares and raised eye brows!).
The Five Coffee Commandments
1. Do not order yourself a cappuccino, caffé latte, or any other milky variations of coffee after the morning has passed. The Italians cannot stomach the idea of consuming hot milk after having a full meal.
2. An espresso is the default cup of coffee you will get when you order yourself a serving in coffee places throughout the country. The term ‘espresso’ is not used – instead, locals place orders for their coffee with the term ‘un caffè’, which refers to a single espresso.
3. A single espresso may not look like much, but do not belittle this tiny cup of caffeine, for an Italian espresso is known to pack a powerful punch.
If you think you are in need of a huge jolt of energy, you may choose to order a double espresso (un caffè doppio). However, do note that this is uncommon among the locals. The Italians do drink ample amounts of coffee, but they usually consume them in small doses throughout the day.
4. Like your coffee strong, but want to have something other than an espresso? Order yourself a cup of caffè lungo, which is an espresso with hot water added to it. This beverage is less diluted compared to the caffè americano.
5. If you really cannot imagine having coffee without a single drop of milk, a cup of caffè macchiato will float your boat. This coffee, unlike the type of macchiato that is served in places outside of Italy, refers to an espresso containing a tiny froth of milk.
Enjoy your coffee the Italian way with our BonAppetour hosts, Francesca and Cristina! Even if you are not a fan of coffee, check out other BonAppetour dining experiences in Italy!