We love our coffee, and we all have our favorites, whether a latte, cappuccino, espresso, or American-style sweet coffee drink. Around the world, every country has unique coffee flavors and preparations, and they are all worth a taste.
Turkish coffee is the most popular coffee preparation in many countries throughout the Middle East, Eastern Europe, and North Africa. The coffee may be called “Arabic,” “Persian,” “Greek,” or “Armenian,” rather than Turkish, but the preparation is essentially the same. The coffee is prepared in a special pot, where the water is heated, and finely ground coffee added and stirred until the mixture is hot and creamy on top. This thick, powerful coffee is not filtered. Some of the fine grounds sink to the bottom, with a froth developing on top. It is drunk out of small cups, with a side glass of water. A layer of mud-like grounds will remain at the bottom of your cup, and you will drink some of them – that’s normal!
Café de Olla – Mexican Coffee
Café de Olla is translated to “coffee from a pot.” This traditional Mexican coffee is infused with cinnamon or star anise and sweetened with unrefined dark brown sugar, called piloncillo. A sweet and spicy coffee, it is prepared by placing water, cinnamon, and sugar in a pot to simmer until the sugar dissolves. After the water boils and the sugar has dissolved, the coffee is added, the heat turned off, and the mixture is stirred and steeped for about five minutes. The coffee is then poured through a strainer before serving with heated milk or black.
The Austrians enjoy several coffee preparations. One could be compared to the Italian cappuccino. Espresso is topped with steamed milk and milk foam, whipped cream, and may be finished with a dusting of cocoa powder or powdered sugar. Slowly sip your coffee through the creamy top layer. Austrians are master bakers, so enjoy your Austrian coffee with some cheese strudel, or one of the traditional crescent-shaped cookies, vanillekipferl.
French Café au Lait
A café au lait is half steamed milk and half brewed coffee. This coffee drink is like an Italian café latte, but gentler, as it is made with drip coffee rather than espresso, and frothed milk. It may be served in a large cup, perfect for dipping a freshly-baked croissant. If you find a café au lait on the menu in New Orleans, it will be made with coffee and chicory, a unique local flavor.
Moroccan Spiced Coffee
In Morocco, spiced coffee is traditional. The coffee flavors are enhanced with cinnamon, peppercorns, nutmeg, ginger, cardamom, and cloves. The coffee and spices are ground together, and the coffee then made in a French press. Milk is heated almost to the boiling point and then added to the coffee. Some people add sugar, and some don’t, as the flavors of the spices produce a sweet flavor to the brew.
While we think of Japan as being a tea-drinking nation, coffee is popular too. Just like the care with which every dish of food is prepared, the Japanese have taken coffee brewing to the next level. A siphon coffee maker will make making coffee look like performing a science experiment. The coffee maker has an upper and lower bowl and a burner, and a filter. The filter is soaked in warm water. Boiling water is added to the bottom bowl and heated with a special burner. Once the water achieves the right temperature, a vacuum is created which moves the water upward to the top chamber, where the coffee brews. Once brewed, the heat source is turned off, and the fresh coffee flows back to the bottom chamber. While it sounds complicated, you will drink some of the purest, strongest coffee on the planet.