Italian coffee phenomenon is a worldwide machine and while coffee itself came from the Arabian peninsula, it is today synonymous with Italy itself. Naturally, coffee bars outside Italy tend to cling on to the Italian heritage just as you find Chinese restaurants outside of China.
Here, then, are the commandments of having coffee in Italy.
Milk in the Morning
Cappuccino, latte macchiato or caffe latte are all drinks that use milk as the main ingredient alongside coffee. Such drinks are designed for the morning cup and never meant to be taken after meals. Italians do not appreciate the thought of hot milt mixing with food in the stomach. If you happen to prefer milk in your coffee no matter the time, better apologize to the barman first as you place your order in Italy!
Never try and experiment a lot with coffee. Try asking for a mint Frappuccino when in Italy and witness how you instantly alienate the entire staff and natives present at ear’s length! Unless a coffee style is available in a region, you should never ask for it. For instance, in Naples you can find yourself a caffe alla nocciola but do not ask for that anywhere else. Likewise, in Milan there’s the un marocchino, that is a variation on cappuccino and it comes in a small glass served upside down with light sprinkling of cocoa powder. But you won’t find this anywhere else other than in Milan.
Never use the word espresso around Italians. It is a very technical term for Italians and not one to be used on a daily basis. What you want in Italy though is the un caffe which is the single shot espresso you are used to elsewhere.
Double shot of espresso once again is referred to with a unique name in Italy and it is called caffe doppio. However, remember that this is not Italian by any stretch of imagination so, be frugal when ordering such extravagant Western influences.
Be Loud And Clear
Always be confident of your order and call them out with authority to the barista. You should never be timid as the Italians believe in being confident and upfront. Also remember to pay the barista instantly after receiving your beverage.
Remember To Pay First
When in a station bar, airport or tourist destination, you are served with “ticket” as you receive your order and that is your cue to pay first before you consume your beverage.
If you need not, then do not sit. Coffee is a believed to be a drug in Italy and it is best enjoyed in a single standing.
The Right Temperature
Coffee in Italy is served at the precise temperature at which you can take it down instantly. If you feel the coffee is too hot for your liking, then you should ask for an un caffe bollente instead of trying to blow the froth off the cappuccino in an attempt to cool it down.