How to drink coffee in the world. Its function as a catalyst among different peoples.

Article written by Michele Sergio published on L’Espresso Neapolitan of September 2018

There is no drink in the world as engaging as coffee: you drink it at all latitudes, even in countries that, for culture and tradition, have in the past been reluctant to consume it, preferring the traditional tea.

The undisputed homeland of coffee remains, of course, Italy. It is no coincidence that the terms of the Italian language coffee, cappuccino, espresso, caffellatte, macchiato, are now used internationally in the cafeteria. Not is it a coincidence that the most important “coffee cities” are Italian, in addition to Naples, which is its capital, Turin, Venice, Rome, Florence and Trieste. Nevertheless, the beloved drink is not native to our peninsula but to the Kaffa region in Ethiopia and the first people who started using it were the Arabs. Still to confirm the universality of coffee we must add that the same has had great development in terms of production in the subtropical countries such as Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Vietnam, Indonesia, Kenya, where the shrubs have adapted with success at their climate. Lastly, let’s not forget that, alongside the producing countries, coffee has also spread, and above all, in the consumer countries or in those with a high consumption of infused black: Italy, France, Spain, Austria, Germany, United States of America .

Coffee, even if drunk with different recipes and methods of preparation in different parts of the world, constitutes, everywhere and transversally, an important social catalyst, just like music or cinema, able to unite people of different languages ​​and cultures. The proof is the fact that tourists from all over the world come to Naples to try our unique and unmistakable coffee, keeping the Neapolitan espresso among the most pleasant memories of their holiday.

Drinked in Naples, coffee has the capacity of a real “icebreaker”, a pretext of comparison, a reason for dialogue and a good conveyor of knowledge among foreign visitors and Neapolitan bartender. This also happens elsewhere, albeit to a lesser extent.

In short, coffee is a drink capable of uniting a thousand cultures, surpassing, with its sip, differences and diversity! In the current international context, with serious problems linked to the migrations of peoples, to racial and religious conflicts, the coffee cup can be a small example of how, with little, we can break down differences and misunderstandings: sharing the universal drink is dialogue, meet, get to know each other, understand each other. The places where you drink coffee, from the smallest of bars to the renowned cafeteria, exclude fears, misunderstandings and differences, represent the ideal room for linguistic and cultural exchange, where “the stranger” meets “the other foreigner”, where it is easier to understand that, beyond the apparent differences, peoples are not foreigners but constitute the different children of the same family, that of the human race over colors and religions!

We do not want to be presumptuous but, we think and with conviction, that a shared coffee helps to make the world a more beautiful place to spend that wonderful experience that is life.

 Turkey – Turk Kahvesi

The spread of coffee in Europe, starting from the end of the XVII century, is a truly revolutionary event in the customs and eating habits of the inhabitants of the Old Continent. Open the coffee shops and infused black seduces Europeans with its strong and intense taste; black infused, yes, because it is infused. This original way of preparing and drinking coffee has remained unchanged over the centuries and is still used in Arab countries, while in Europe and the Americas different technologies and recipes have been successful.

In Turkey, where the preparation of coffee as an infusion originates and remains, the national drink is the very famous kavhe (protected by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site since 2013), which is prepared by boiling coffee powder in a particular jug ​​with the long handle (called ibrik), usually made of brass. Coffee grinding must be very fine. Once ready, this coffee must rest for a few minutes so that the powder settles on the bottom of the glass.

 Vienna – From the Kaffeehaus to the Einspänner

The official date of the spread of coffee in Europe is 1683, the year of the Ottoman Turks’ siege of Vienna, in whose camp the soldiers of the European armies, after the victory, found beans and coffee powder. This is how coffee makes its entrance to the court of Vienna and quickly spread with the rise of “coffee shops” which later will be called KaffeeHaus. After more than 300 years, Vienna is a city of coffee, with many historic cafés recognized as Unesco heritage as a typical institution of the company

 France – Les Cafès de Paris

Coffee in France arrives in the mid-seventeenth century and is the first Parisian café, the Procope, opened its doors in 1683. Coffee does not immediately win the hearts of the French even for the real “boycott” promoted by winemakers who feared that the “Wine of Arabia” is played in crisis the French wine. After the resistances, the coffee spread very soon and towards the end of the nineteenth century Paris is full of cafes, places for entertainment of the boulevards, not just cafes but places where to eat and drink wine, oysters and champagne and, of course, coffee. Their structure is unmistakable: verandas, covers, chairs and tables in Belle Epoque style. In France, the French press enjoyed a home-made coffee machine with the plunger that I have our cousins ​​of the French overseas to prepare their coffee.

 USA – From the filter coffee to the big coffee multinationals

Are you coming to drink in the United States? Stainless steel cup with stainless steel frame with stainless steel lid or, finally, in the refreshment points where the waitress on duty walks among the tables of customers with this species of carafe that in the United States is called a bowl. The type of coffee that has been created for coffee is a type of coffee prepared by pouring hot water into the ground coffee, collecting the resulting liquid in a machine using a filter. Over time, the American idea of bars and cafés all over the world.

 Mexico – Cafè de Olla

Central and South America are coffee growers and exporters. Mexico is a country where coffee is very consumed. There is a special type of coffee, an exact Mexican voice, which is cooked in earthenware pots and prepared with a cinnamon stick, brown sugar, coffee powder and boiling water.

 Ireland – The Irish Coffee

It is said that in the ’40s of the last century, in the airport of Shannon, the bartender Joe Sheridan had the habit of refreshing the exhausted and cold travelers with a coffee enriched with whiskey and sugar. It is the Irish Coffee, a drink with a strong and delicate taste at the same time, which gives sweetness to the palate. With a glass of Irish whiskey, brown sugar, hot coffee and thickened cream, it is an excellent alternative to traditional coffee. When the news of this coffee arrives in the United States, thanks to a journalist of the San Francisco Chronicle, once tasted he was very successful, making well-deserved entry into the official list of IBA Cocktails.

  Vietnam – Ca Phe Da coffee

A really refreshing drink consisting of a cup of coffee, 3 of boiling water, ice and two tablespoons of condensed milk. For those wishing to dare you prefer the Ca Phe Trung, a special coffee dove filtered Vietnamese coffee beans and mix perfectly with a cream made of yolk and condensed milk.

 Ethiopia – The Buna Coffee

The typical Ethiopia coffee is characterized by a rich and fragrant flavor flavored with black cardamom. The preparation of this drink is a ritual truth that goes from roasting to the bean pan, grinding the latter in the mortar, to the infusion in the jebena, a traditional earthenware coffee pot that cooks on the hot coals.

 Senegal – Coffee and religion

In this country it is a true rite: it accompanies the faithful in the recitation of daily prayers. It is called Touba in homage to the holy city of Senegal. It is prepared by pouring into a cup of coffee, sugar with the addition of selim (a spice) and cloves.

 Scandinavian countries – Karsk

Perhaps not everyone knows that in Norway, Sweden and Finland there is the highest per capita consumption of coffee in the world; here it averages about 10 kilos per person per year. The special version is Karsk, a rural coffee with a substantial amount of liquor, useful to combat the harsh climate. Truly unique is the use of putting a coin on the bottom of the cup and pour the coffee until it is completely submerged. Then pour some liquor until the coin re-emerges again.